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The TPAD Model 1000 Vacuum Tube Phono Preamplifier!
In Stock! Only $599!

• Precise RIAA phono equalization and highly natural, open, accurate sound
• All-tube signal path with novel circuit architecture
• High-quality USA-made PC boards, chassis, and custom power transformer
• Premium 6922 tubes selected for low noise & microphonics
• Internationally-compatible 120/240 VAC, 50/60 Hz
• 34 dB gain at 1kHz; perfect for moving-magnet and high-output MC cartridges
• Approx. dimensions: 12"W x 8"D x 3"H, shipping weight 12 lbs.
About TPAD

Tritschler Precision Audio Devices was formed in 2003 to commercialize my proprietary phono preamp technology, which started as a capstone project in college and developed into the published version that has been in my reference system for over 16 years and enjoyed by high-end DIY audiophiles all over the world. Read the audioXpress articles HERE and HERE!

The TPAD Model 1000 is the ultimate expression of this design at the highest-possible performance/price ratio. What better way to enjoy one of my albums than through a phono preamp I designed and use in my studio?

Phono Preamp FAQ

What's a phono preamp and do I need one?

If you've ever listened to an analog LP, you've listened to it through some type of phonograph preamplifier! A phono preamp provides the necessary amplification for the tiny signals emanating from your phono cartridge. It also implements a very special equalization curve so that records play back to an international standard set by the RIAA. If you take an ordinary turntable and try to plug it directly into a line or auxiliary input or sound card, you'll barely hear anything but a faint, scratchy whisper.

Don't most receivers have phono preamps built-in?

It depends; older models, yes. Newer A/V receivers sometimes don't and require an external phono preamp, which you would connect to an auxiliary line input. Even if your receiver has a built-in phono preamp, it's probably nothing special.

Why vacuum tubes?

Many audiophiles simply prefer their sound. I certainly do, and there are engineering advantages, too.

When I use the TPAD 1000 plugged into the tape input of my receiver, I have to turn the volume up higher than when I use the built-in phono preamp. Why is that?

Good question. Most phono preamps have about 40dB of gain at mid-frequencies; that's a voltage amplification of 100 times. Mine has a gain of about 34dB, or 50 times. In Spinal Tap terms, this is about "two quieter." The reason for this design decision is that I wanted to minimize the number of amplifying stages in the signal path and this is the most gain I could comfortably squeeze out of the topology without resorting to semiconductor current sources or more tubes. After 16 years of listening, I still feel it's the best way to go. I promise you will still have enough range on your volume control to blow your ears and speakers apart. And the sound will be quiet, pristine, and marvelous. I actually use mine straight into a tube power amp with plenty of volume headroom. If you use a moving-coil cartridge with less than a millivolt or two output, you'll probably need to use an external step-up transformer or pre-pre-amp. If you have a regular moving-magnet or high-output moving-coil unit, plug it right in and enjoy.

I want to use this preamp to transfer LP's to hi-res digital. Any problems driving a sound card or A/D converter?

No problems at all. In fact, the TPAD 1000 is near-ideal for this application; low noise, ultra-low distortion, and the comparatively low gain is actually a plus for ensuring that signal transients don't overload the converters. The preamp will comfortably drive any input impedance down to 10kΩ.