Looking for a different preamp for Gryphon Mephisto

amadeus

VIP/Donor
Jan 13, 2018
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#61
You have awesome systems, Amadeus! I always enjoy reading your signature block. Would love to hear the Koda, Kagura, Kalista Dreamplay, and Peak Consult Dragon someday! And the Gryphon Kalliope as well...

Tahnk you:)
If/when you visit Netherlands let me know and we can make a appointment.
e
 

reverendo

Well-Known Member
Mar 10, 2014
119
9
70
Dallas, TX
#62
I know this is an old thread, but I am having the same question. I have a fully recapped Antileon and want to find a good matching preamp. Most of the suggestions here are above my paygrade.
I have been a long-time Gryphon owner and have come to the conclusion, as many others, that their true strength lies in the amp section. preamps are not where they shine.
Would anyone have suggestions?
 

reverendo

Well-Known Member
Mar 10, 2014
119
9
70
Dallas, TX
#63
I know this is an old thread, but I am having the same question. I have a fully recapped Antileon and want to find a good matching preamp. Most of the suggestions here are above my paygrade.
I have been a long-time Gryphon owner and have come to the conclusion, as many others, that their true strength lies in the amp section. preamps are not where they shine.
Would anyone have suggestions?
BTW, I am driving my amp directly from my DAC. I am just wondering if I am not getting the full potential of my setup.
 

jfrech

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Sep 3, 2012
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#64
You have a great amp. And I think most set ups benefit from a preamp. Do you have a price range?
 

LL21

Well-Known Member
Dec 26, 2010
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262
283
#65
I know this is an old thread, but I am having the same question. I have a fully recapped Antileon and want to find a good matching preamp. Most of the suggestions here are above my paygrade.
I have been a long-time Gryphon owner and have come to the conclusion, as many others, that their true strength lies in the amp section. preamps are not where they shine.
Would anyone have suggestions?
Looking at your system...i will say I have liked Wilson, Gryphon and CJ preamp for many years now...a combination i have simply upgraded electronically within the family. Antileon to Colosseum to Mephisto and from CJ ACT to CJ GAT 1 to GAT 2. Yes, they are single ended to XLR...I have discussed this on 2 occassions with Niels in their Technical Department and he was happy with the combination. At his recommendation upon settling on the equipment, i got my cables reterminated (to get rid of the XLR adaptors).
 

reverendo

Well-Known Member
Mar 10, 2014
119
9
70
Dallas, TX
#66
You have a great amp. And I think most set ups benefit from a preamp. Do you have a price range?
I forgot to mention that and a few other things:
  • I prefer balanced, since the Antileon is fully balanced and only has balanced xlr inputs
  • my preference is for a SS preamp
  • price range is $2k - $3k
 

reverendo

Well-Known Member
Mar 10, 2014
119
9
70
Dallas, TX
#67
Looking at your system...i will say I have liked Wilson, Gryphon and CJ preamp for many years now...a combination i have simply upgraded electronically within the family. Antileon to Colosseum to Mephisto and from CJ ACT to CJ GAT 1 to GAT 2. Yes, they are single ended to XLR...I have discussed this on 2 occassions with Niels in their Technical Department and he was happy with the combination. At his recommendation upon settling on the equipment, i got my cables reterminated (to get rid of the XLR adaptors).
thank you. this might be a way to go, but it has two things that I prefer not to have to deal with: tubes and unbalanced. will still look into used options around
 

LL21

Well-Known Member
Dec 26, 2010
11,151
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#68
thank you. this might be a way to go, but it has two things that I prefer not to have to deal with: tubes and unbalanced. will still look into used options around
I totally get that. And to be fair the CJ GAT 1 was actually more in need of robust tubes in order to avoid getting noisy after a year of playing 20-40 hours a week. But the CJ GAT 2 so far has only had 1 retubing in over 3 years). And it is only 2 tubes. Nevertheless, i get what you are saying...in which case I would suggest you might consider the Robert Koda Takumi 10...i have not heard it but know several who have including 2 who own it. I could imagine if the CJ works for you 'voice-wise'...the Koda could as well. It is Solid State and XLR.
 
Likes: reverendo

CKKeung

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Jun 18, 2011
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#69
The Robert Koda K10 got a single-end circuit.
The top K15 Extreme is full balanced circuit and sonically much better in all aspects.
Both are extremely musical and can be alternatives to consider for tube audiophiles.
 
Likes: reverendo

LL21

Well-Known Member
Dec 26, 2010
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#70
I forgot to mention that and a few other things:
  • I prefer balanced, since the Antileon is fully balanced and only has balanced xlr inputs
  • my preference is for a SS preamp
  • price range is $2k - $3k
I am thinking perhaps (second hand):
- Pass Labs xp12...stretch to 20?
- Ayre Acoustics K5
- if you can find one second hand at a super-low price, Bespoke Audio (passive)
 
Likes: reverendo
May 30, 2010
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#71
thank you. this might be a way to go, but it has two things that I prefer not to have to deal with: tubes and unbalanced. will still look into used options around
I also have a theoretical preference for solid state and balanced - yes, I am thinking about the latest D'Agostino Momentum HD preamplifier ;)- but when I consider sound quality value for money, particularly in the used market I am very attracted by tubes and unbalanced. I can't think of any SS preamplfier that really tempts me in the used price range you specify, but immediately find a few tubes ones, particularly from conrad johnson. Anyway ,recently a friend of mine got my Parasound JC2B (I just want to keep the JC1's for the Wilson subs, but the seller only wanted to sell the whole lot) and is loving it. I have to recognize it sounds better than I expected.
 
Likes: reverendo

reverendo

Well-Known Member
Mar 10, 2014
119
9
70
Dallas, TX
#72
I forgot to mention that if I could afford it I would get myself a Dart preamp and be happy. It's my reference and my favorite preamp. Anything that comes close to what it does would be of major interest.
 
Jan 22, 2020
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#73
I strongly recommend Audio Research Reference 10 pre with the Gryphon amp which will be a great match and for the value (previously owned units) there hardly any preamps under $40K could challenge the Ref 10 in term of musical quality...maybe if you could find a Nagra HD Pre for under $30K used then it is a different story.
 

LL21

Well-Known Member
Dec 26, 2010
11,151
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#74

GSOphile

Active Member
Sep 4, 2017
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#76
You have an Antileon and are wiling to spend 2-3K on a pre-amp to see if you can realize the amp's full potential? IMO this sounds like hooking a Yugo transmission to a Mercedes engine. You will need to spend more on a pre-amp worthy of the Antileon.... as illustrated by some of the suggestions above.
 

reverendo

Well-Known Member
Mar 10, 2014
119
9
70
Dallas, TX
#77
You have an Antileon and are wiling to spend 2-3K on a pre-amp to see if you can realize the amp's full potential? IMO this sounds like hooking a Yugo transmission to a Mercedes engine. You will need to spend more on a pre-amp worthy of the Antileon.... as illustrated by some of the suggestions above.
My luck is that it is recapped with some magic from @Alrainbow going on, but it is, nonetheless, the original Antileon, which means that from a pure price perspective a huge investment does not make sense. The greater difficulty, though, is that I have always worked with a DAC with analogue volume control directly into an amp when I didn't have an integrated. I did that with a Camelot into a Gryphon Tabu.
I want to see if might be missing something, since I have never used a separate preamp in any of my setups in the past. Hence the caution that gets to be seen in the price range, especially because it does mean that I need to get an additional power cord and a good pair of interconnects. ;)
 

bonzo75

Member Sponsor
Feb 26, 2014
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#79
I forgot to mention that if I could afford it I would get myself a Dart preamp and be happy. It's my reference and my favorite preamp. Anything that comes close to what it does would be of major interest.
Dart pre does not drive all power amps equally, for example it did not drive constellation middle model as well as it drove its own. You need a more flexible preamp.
 

Tango

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Mar 12, 2017
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#80
Dart pre does not drive all power amps equally, for example it did not drive constellation middle model as well as it drove its own. You need a more flexible preamp.
You did a/b/c test. I wonder how anyone could evaluate or put a grading of a preamp working with a particular amp especially amp of different brand without trying different alternatives.
 

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