VTL TL-7.5 Series III Comparative Listening Impressions

Ron Resnick

Site Co-Owner, Administrator
Jan 25, 2015
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Beverly Hills, CA
#1
Have you auditioned the VTL TL-7.5 Series III line stage preamplifier?

If yes, what did you hear -- what were your impressions?

What were the other components in the system in which you auditioned the TL-7.5 Series III?

Have you compared the TL-7.5 Series III directly, in the same system, to any competing line stage preamplifier?
 
Jun 15, 2013
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#2
Have you auditioned the VTL TL-7.5 Series III line stage preamplifier?

If yes, what did you hear -- what were your impressions?

What were the other components in the system in which you auditioned the TL-7.5 Series III?

Have you compared the TL-7.5 Series III directly, in the same system, to any competing line stage preamplifier?
Ron, I am guessing that you have read Roy Gregory's comparative review of the VTL 7.5 MKIII vs ARC Ref 10 vs CJ GAT 2 on The Audio Beat?
 

Ron Resnick

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Jan 25, 2015
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#3
Yes, thank you. :)

Based on that comparison I would like to mix into the 7.5’s sonic characteristics some of the CJ’s more traditional tube bloom and richness (but I believe the Io will provide that).
 

LL21

Active Member
Dec 26, 2010
10,589
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#4
Yes, thank you. :)

Based on that comparison I would like to mix into the 7.5’s sonic characteristics some of the CJ’s more traditional tube bloom and richness (but I believe the Io will provide that).
Both Marc and Roy already staked that the Siegfied IIs are their favorite amps. Each of their writing about the 7.5Mk III certainly suggests it is not that far off from that vaunted position as well among preamps.
 

Ron Resnick

Site Co-Owner, Administrator
Jan 25, 2015
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#5
I agree, LL21. Another data point is that I believe Dave Wilson has been demoing the Chronosonic with the 7.5 Series III.
 
May 30, 2010
14,278
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Portugal
#6
Just to make it clear - I would never consider the Siegfried II without the TL 7.5 mkIII. Or at less listening carefully to the other preamplfier side by side. Otherwise every time I would look at the other I would think - what am I missing? :)
 

Ron Resnick

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Jan 25, 2015
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#7
It doesn’t necessarily have to be this way, but I do feel there is something to be said for matching the line stage preamp and the power amp from the same company.

As Shakti and I discussed on Saturday night I bet a lot of displeasure with the sound of electronics in particular and the sound of a system overall derives from a failure to think through the proper impedance matching of components from different brands.
 

KeithR

VIP/Donor
May 7, 2010
3,115
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Marina del Rey, CA
#8
I wouldn't want to mix any of the 7.5s characteristics with "the CJ’s more traditional tube bloom and richness." You're guessing at that point and trying to solve a perceived flaw in one with something in another. Most likely you end up with the worst of both.

It's like Russ saying he added Lamm phono and a tube DAC to the Spectral to fix the sound. The first order problem is the Spectral and the folks on this forum who led him down the fix it path are wrong (sorry, Russ).

Fixing sound with cables, tubes, tweaks or whatever is the antithesis of building a SOTA system imo.
 

Ron Resnick

Site Co-Owner, Administrator
Jan 25, 2015
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#9
Yes, I am guessing!

But it was not in any way from the thought of trying to solve a "perceived flaw." I highly doubt that any of the world's top, state-of-the-art, line stages has any objective flaw.

It was from the thought of adding a drop of honey to my already wonderful tea. :)
 
May 30, 2010
14,278
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Portugal
#10
(...) from a failure to think through the proper impedance matching of components from different brands.
A nice generic sentence that is meaningless unless you specify what we mean by it. What is proper matching? Just matching that sounds good? Or specific, well though rules?

Sorry to come back again to this subject, IMHO if people want to speak technical language they must be able to debate it.

Impedance matching will not be an issue with the VTL Siegfried with 99% of the preamplfiers.
 

Ron Resnick

Site Co-Owner, Administrator
Jan 25, 2015
5,371
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Beverly Hills, CA
#11
By proper impedance matching of preamp and amplifier I am talking about exactly the analysis I am undertaking to figure out the technically proper line stage for my particular amplifier application. I mean making sure that the output impedance of the line stage is appropriate for the input impedance of the power amplifier, for example.
 
May 30, 2010
14,278
130
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Portugal
#12
By proper impedance matching of preamp and amplifier I am talking about exactly the analysis I am undertaking to figure out the technically proper line stage for my particular amplifier application. I mean making sure that the output impedance of the line stage is appropriate for the input impedance of the power amplifier, for example.
The problem is that the coupling is strongly dependent of topology, factors such as gain and speaker efficiency or distortion behavior of the amplifier. Simple misleading rules based just on impedance value are of little help.
 
May 30, 2010
14,278
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Portugal
#13
I wouldn't want to mix any of the 7.5s characteristics with "the CJ’s more traditional tube bloom and richness."
This characterization of cj sound does not apply to modern cj's and I think Ron is considering current equipment ... BTW, what characteristic of the 7.5 should we consider a "perceived flaw"?

A good friend has owned for long a VTL 7.5 series 1 with a cj premier 350 - a great sounding pair, I spent long hours listening to this unorthodox coupling.
 

Ron Resnick

Site Co-Owner, Administrator
Jan 25, 2015
5,371
154
63
Beverly Hills, CA
#14
The problem is that the coupling is strongly dependent of topology, factors such as gain and speaker efficiency or distortion behavior of the amplifier. Simple misleading rules based just on impedance value are of little help.
The topic is already a complicated one; there is no need to make it gratuitously more complicated. I am making a very simple point that it is important to be cognizant of the output impedance of the line stage and the input impedance of the amplifier.
 
May 30, 2010
14,278
130
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Portugal
#15
The topic is already a complicated one; there is no need to make it gratuitously more complicated. I am making a very simple point that it is important to be cognizant of the output impedance of the line stage and the input impedance of the amplifier.
And my point is that of you forget the "gratuitous" complication you risk behaving like the scientist that thinks that the legless frog is deaf.

It is important to be cognizant of the output impedance of the line stage and the input impedance of the amplifier to exclude the few cases that are easily not compatible, not those that sound excellent.

Anyway, do you have a rule to suggest us? Extreme objectivists have a very nice and simple one. Using it they usually conclude that most of the time the preamplfier is useless unless you need a switch box. :)
 

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