Audio Research PH3 PHONO PREAMPLIFIER

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Audio Research PH3 PHONO PREAMPLIFIER

Postby jadis » Tue May 07, 2013 8:54 pm

AN OLD WAR HORSE...

THE AUDIO RESEARCH PH3 PHONO PREAMPLIFIER:

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The advent of having another phono preamp in my system gave me a chance to visually 'dissect' the innards of my ARC PH3 as it suddenly has been 'benched' and is technically inactive.

Having owned this phono preamp for more than 8 years, I consider it a war horse of sorts, good enough to be top dog and the only dog without being issued a warrant of divorce all these time. :D One thing about this preamp, I didn't like it with the stock China 6922 tubes that came with it then. When I discovered the Mullard CV2492 as their replacements, they were a match made in heaven with the unit and I had been using them ever since. Right now, I am awaiting the arrival of a different kind, the Amperex USN CEP 7308 and in the meantime, breaking in the EE Minimax to continue my listening and learning experience.

Off the bat, I am going to say that the PH3 is an excellent phono preamp. Having used it since 2004, I am so familiar with its good traits. It is very dynamic, quite extended, and has a very open and spacious sound stage. Where it is ticklish is its sensitivity to the 'flavor' of tube brands. I had tried some Siemens CCa, Telefunken CCa, E188CC, Mullard E88CC(2492) and while each tube had its own strengths, I lived with the 2492s the longest because of its all-around qualities. I have decided to try other pastures like the Amperex which I heard briefly in my system when it was on loan here and I quite liked the fullness of the sound that it provides. So when these tubes arrive, I can make another head on comparison with the EE Minimax, with its own set of 'maxed out' tubes.
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Re: Audio Research PH3 PHONO PREAMPLIFIER

Postby Klik » Tue May 21, 2013 1:03 pm

Love this phono preamp. I have the same preamp. Planning to mod it to replace lytics, diodes and add chokes and replace all caps to Mundorf SGO.
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Re: Audio Research PH3 PHONO PREAMPLIFIER

Postby jadis » Tue May 21, 2013 1:12 pm

Hi Klik,

That's great to hear! It's a pretty good performing phono preamp in my books. With mods, it can definitely sound better! :)
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