Any true music lover knows that there is a lot more to experiencing good sound than simply compiling a list of quality tracks from top artists and then pressing play. Indeed, audiophiles have more technical factors to consider before they can take pleasure in a music-listening or deejaying session. If we think, for example, about how most music fans have quite a passion for vinyl, it is quickly realised that these listeners or DJs will need specialist sound equipment. A phono stage, also known as a phono preamp or phono amp, is one such specialist product that amplifies the audio signal received by any vinyl based music system before the sound reaches the speakers.
However, not all phono stages are identical; while any phono amp is capable of amplifying sound, the performance of this essential task can vary from faultless to atrocious. This is because only the best phono stages achieve high levels of precision when they amplify.
When selecting a phono stage, it is therefore best to make precision a priority. Reducing background noise to a minimum should be a matter of particular importance to those looking to transfer their vinyl collection to a digital format. In brief, it should be remembered that the quality of the music input as played on vinyl will be reflected in the eventual digital output. The analogue to digital transfer thus needs to be effected with great care and with investment in the best quality products: a better turntable and phono stage setup will ensure that the time spent on digitizing a music collection is not time wasted.
If the word investment inspires alarm, you may be worrying in vain, because even some of the audio manufacturing companies that have achieved worldwide acclaim and offer bespoke services charge only a little more than a basic phono stage or phono amp supplier. Altogether, if you care for your ears, and respect your favourite artists and your audience, just remember there may be more to be gained from your music with a reasonable phono preamp than what can be delivered by a more basic turntable.
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