There is no doubt you might have come across a phono preamp. The phono preamp is important to help listening to your old records. These preamps are all about enhancing the sound that you get from these various records. If you get to do it right, you can be sure to have a great time always.
We get to help you find the best phono preamps on the market right now. All the models discussed below should help you find one that works for you.
Let us get into the reviews already.
Top 10 Best Phono Preamps 2020 Reviews
- Top 10 Best Phono Preamps 2020 Reviews
- 1 LEHMANN Audio Black Cube Phono Preamp
- 2 Marchand LN112MC Tube Phono Preamp
- 3 Emotiva Audio XPS-1 Phono Preamp
- 4 Musical Surroundings Nova II Battery Powered Dual Mono
- 5 Parasound Zphono Phono Preamplifier
- 6 Music Hall Mini MM Phono Pre-amplifier
- 7 U-Turn Audio Pluto Phono Preamp
- 8 Pro-Ject Audio Phono Box DC
- 9 SPL Phonos ProFi MM/MC Adjustable Phono Preamp
- 10 Musical Fidelity MX-VYNL
- Best Phono Preamps Buying Guide
1 LEHMANN Audio Black Cube Phono Preamp
If you are looking to get one of the best phono preamps, you might want to think in the line of Lehmann. The brand is known for its phono stages and other multiple products that it makes. The good thing about a reputable brand is that you always end up with a performance product. It is the reason we had to check this out.
This model comes with an advanced circuitry. This is crucial when it comes to the overall performance. You do not want to end up with a model that cannot deliver on the best sound. The circuit comes with the high quality op-amps that ensure there is enough power for amplification. They will also last longer thus not requiring you to keep changing them more often.
The manufacturer further made it to have several options when it comes to customization. You can be sure that it offers the best performance that suits the user’s cartridge and the following amplifier. Each time you get to use it, you will feel it was worth getting one for yourself.
The most common bit of tailoring the preamp ability is to set the gain to low or high. These two are easily achieved by moving the magnet cartridges and coil types respectively. This is done by the miniature switches underneath the product. They might hard to reach, but they are crucial for offering more functionality.
The model is all about being professional and emotional at the same time. You get to enjoy the kind of sound you get from the model. It belongs to a premier league of phono preamps that are all about giving the user quality sound. With its unmatched quality, there is no doubt you will have an easy time using the model from today.
You will also love the compact size. It might be compact, but it is still powerful. You can feel that it is better than some other big or expensive models on the market.
Our Rating: (4.5 / 5)
2 Marchand LN112MC Tube Phono Preamp
If you are a person who loves stuff made or assembled in USA, then this should be good for you. It often signifies that the product is of high quality. Even when you touch the preamp, you will feel that a lot of work went into making it. Well, you might see that it has a simple wood design, but it is for sure worth the money you are spending on it.
The overall design and circuitry is another top thing you will love. It will deliver of precision amplification that works for everyone. You will now end up with a model that gives you the best sound quality. To make it even better, it uses the RIAA correction for moving magnet and moving coil cartridge. With such features, you are sure that the model can deliver on the best functionality always.
That is not all, as the model still has an 8Hz subsonic filter. The aim of this filter is to suppress all the frequencies below 8Hz while keeping the in-band sound signals unaffected. You can see that the manufacturer did a good job when it comes to keeping the unwanted noises down.
The model’s subsonic filter is also important for reducing the unwanted cone movements brought about by record warp. The sound quality will never have to be an issue with this one.
The manufacturer also uses the high quality parts when making the product. This includes the transformers, resistors, capacitors and more. There is no doubt you will never have to worry about replacing the preamp when high quality products are involved.
Our Rating: (4.5 / 5)
3 Emotiva Audio XPS-1 Phono Preamp
The model is all about giving the user high performance. Well, you can be sure to enjoy using it thanks to the various features that they have to offer. The model can easily support both the moving coil and moving magnet phono cartridges. With such versatility, you should always find use for such a product. The best part is that you do not have to worry about the price. The manufacturer made it to be affordable so that many can use it.
The model also accepts the standard RCA inputs and outputs. This will make it great in terms of works with various equipment that have line level analog inputs. You can be sure that you will always end up with ease of use when it comes to the overall use of the preamp. The type of versatility you get with such features makes it worth every penny spent on it.
The model is all about having an advanced design important for exceptional performance. This preamp takes cues from the brand’s overall reputation of making some of the best models on the market. You will get the high quality components throughout the signal path of the preamp. It will now deliver on accurate RIAA equalization and extremely low noise for the low-output cartridge.
Because it delivers on low distortion of the sound, the final output will always be great. You never have to worry that your sound quality might not be as you want.
The model comes with a circuitry that provides for optimum gain and noise performance. You can be using the moving magnet and moving coil cartridges. This is a recipe for good performance for any application in mind.
Our Rating: (4.5 / 5)
4 Musical Surroundings Nova II Battery Powered Dual Mono
The model comes from a brand that has established itself for being one of the best. The brand delivers on the best quality to price ratio. You can now be sure that the model you get from them will work great at all times. The model is built in California meaning that it adheres to the US quality standards. You should have a great time using this model for yourself today.
The model is battery powered which can make it flexible too. This is great if you want to use it in places you cannot access the power outlet. If you had used the Nova Phenomena, then you will like this one even more as it replaces that model. This means that it will have more new features that are all about giving you the best experience.
It comes with an improved chassis design to accommodate more parts just as you would have wanted. The model comes with a dual mono and discrete circuitry. These are important when it comes to having an extensive gain and loading flexibility. You should have some good times when it comes to using this type of model.
The rear panel is where you get the switches and other controls. Since it is a compact product, accessing these switches should not be hard. You can adjust the gain and many other settings that relate to the application you have in mind.
The model features the RIAA equalization that is all about giving you the best functionality always. You never have to worry about sound quality when you can get the best signal to noise ratio with the model.
Our Rating: (4.5 / 5)
5 Parasound Zphono Phono Preamplifier
This model is all about having great performance that you need when it comes to sound quality. It is made by a brand that specializes in making preamps. With that kind of experience, you can be sure to always end up with a top quality product that you will like. There is no doubt having a great phono preamp will make listening to your music better.
The model works great with all the line drive preamplifiers. It is one of the most important things that you can have. With such capability, it should be able to deliver on the best performance that you have always wanted. It also stays as a versatile product that you can enjoy using today.
The model is also great in terms of sound quality thanks to RIAA construction. This feature is all about keeping the sound just as great as many would want. It is possible to get several users enjoying the ultra-low distortion sound that comes with the model. You will never have to worry that the sound quality will be affected.
It also comes with switchable gain. You can easily change from moving magnet to moving coil cartridges and vice versa. You can be sure it is a model that works great for many users to enjoy having one in their homes.
To make it even better, this one comes with an exclusive AC polarity switch. The feature is important to eliminate hum when using the model.
The opamps used in the model are ultra-high speed and low noise. This a great combination that is all about giving you one of the best sound quality at all times.
Our Rating: (4.4 / 5)
6 Music Hall Mini MM Phono Pre-amplifier
You never have to worry much about getting the best performance product when such a brand is available. Music Hall works together with some of the best engineers to ensure you get the best quality in terms of sound always. You can be sure that many people will be comfortable getting a model for themselves right now.
When other models are costing the users thousands of dollars, things are different with this one. It is an affordable product that should make it easy for many users to get one. It is under a hundred bucks which is a bargain comparing what you pay to get the other models.
The model appeals to the various users for its size. It is compact so that you can easily set it up anywhere you want. The great size is what makes more people enjoy using the model even further. You will always end up having a great time using this type of model thanks to the overall performance.
You are going to like the solid state phono preamp feature with this model. With this kind of build, it will use the moving magnet and high output moving coil cartridges. Getting a good time with this kind of model is possible thanks to the impressive performance that comes with the model.
The model is also designed to amplify the RIAA equalized phono signal. This makes sure that you get the high level signal in the end.
The functionality of the model allows you to use it with the various electronic components that lack a built-in phono stage. You can easily set it up and get started with using it in a snap.
Our Rating: (4.3 / 5)
7 U-Turn Audio Pluto Phono Preamp
There is no doubt you end up having a great time when it comes to using a top performance phono preamp. That is what you get when it comes to using this model. It is one of the best models you can get right now on the market. The best part is that you will not have to pay a lot of money. It comes as an affordable product that you can always use for yourself right now.
Some of the things that you will like about the model should be the elegant design. The model looks simple, but yet stylish. This is great to ensure that you have a great time using it all the time in the house. You can set it up anywhere and it should easily blend into your existing décor.
The design is not the only elegant thing as the circuitry is on another level. You will always have a great time using this type of preamp as it delivers on the best performance that you could use. The manufacturers the high performance gain stage and subsonic filter to help with removing the low frequency noise. You can be sure to have a good time using this type of model today.
It comes with a number of impressive precision components. The aim is to make sure that you end up with a model that delivers on the best performance. This model comes with RIAA equalization network that consists of WIMA capacitors and precision resistors. If the components can deliver on the best performance, you can be sure the sound will also be as good.
Our Rating: (4.2 / 5)
8 Pro-Ject Audio Phono Box DC
For any list about phono preamps, you can never miss having this model on it. It is not that reviewers are biased, but it simply belongs on the lists. The model’s overall design makes it one of the best when it comes to using the model. You can now end up with some of the best functionality at all times.
The manufacturer made the model to be compatible with the moving magnet and moving coil phono cartridge. This goes further to show that the model is highly versatile. You can be sure to have an easy time using it for the various applications.
The model also allows for external power supply. This is important for reducing the noise and interference. With the noise and interference kept at a minimum, you should be good to go. There is no doubt you will always enjoy using this type of phono box starting today. In the end, you always get clear sounds as the noise is kept to a minimum.
This model features the gold plated input and output jacks. The aim is to make it great against corrosion in the long run. The construction is also great for keeping the model solid. You never have to worry about the overall performance of the model in the long run.
The signal-to-noise ratio is kept within the acceptable limits. This is to ensure you get more in terms of the best sound quality always. You can easily set up the model in a few minutes and start using it. The manual still comes in handy to make sure you have no trouble at all.
Its compact size should make it great for various applications.
Our Rating: (4.2 / 5)
9 SPL Phonos ProFi MM/MC Adjustable Phono Preamp
If you are in the market for a top performance product, then you can always go for this one. It is made to be one of the best on the market and deliver on the best quality sound that makes more people want to get one today. Having a high-end compact design makes it appealing to various users. They can now get it today knowing that it will not have a huge footprint.
The model is meant to be versatile. This is because it can work for record players using either the moving magnet or moving coil cartridges. It is therefore important to make sure that it is something you want. The model delivers on the best performance needs that you might need when it comes to using a preamp.
The model comes with an equalization curve based on RIAA. It shows that the model is suitable for using it with the vinyl record since 1954. You can be sure that it is going to deliver on the best performance at all times.
The manufacturer uses the top quality components to make sure the model is also great. It will last for long making sure you can use it for various applications. Top quality components eliminate the need to change them more often.
The control parameters are adjustable on the front. This is something that makes you even want to use it even more. You can be sure that they are easy to adjust so that you get the best sound.
Having the subsonic filter is important to ensure that you always end up with the best sound quality. No more worries about the noise.
Our Rating: (4.5 / 5)
10 Musical Fidelity MX-VYNL
The moment you take it out of the packaging, you will feel that it is one of the best models. It feels solid in the hand with some of the smartest machined front panel. You will get that the controls come with a positive feeling that should make it great to keep using.
The model comes with impressive flexibility. This is in terms of the gain switch. It will increase the sensitivity for the low output cartridges. If you find yourself needing this type of functionality, now you know which model to check out first.
It is possible to swap between the IEC and RIAA equalization curves. This is done from the front panel making one of the easiest thing for you to do.
The various ports make it great to be used by the vast majority of decks around. You can be sure to have a good time when it comes to the overall performance for this model. You will always have a good time knowing that the model will deliver on the best performance.
The sound on the other hand is the best thing you will get with this model. You will feel that the sound is transparent and detailed the whole time. You can have a great time listening to the music at all times. Most people love the way it handles the vocals. It makes you appreciate even the old music.
Our Rating: (4.5 / 5)
Best Phono Preamps Buying Guide
You will find that most of the phono preamps come with a built-in equalization mode such as the RIAA. They help with correcting the signal coming from the cartridge so that it can be better. It is important for people to understand how the model works making sure that the equalization is present. Some of the other common equalization brands include Decca and Columbia.
The size is always crucial so that you can use it appropriately as you want. This is for those who might have to carry it around more often. It is important that you pick a top performance model that is still compact for ease of portability.
Inputs and outputs
The input and output ports will determine the number of devices that will easily connect to the preamp. You need to make sure that you get a model that delivers on the best number of inputs and outputs. Depending on these ports, you can find one with more ports than others have. More ports always make the model more versatile for various applications.
There is always the need where and why you need the preamp. It does not have to be a complex phono preamp when you just need to handle a few simple tasks with it. Depending on the purpose, you might even have to spend more to get the appropriate phono preamp. Make sure that you pick a model that can deliver on your needs.
It will be great if you can get a model that is within your budget. For a model that costs more, you can always expect it to have more performance features that you need. You can always pick one that is within your budget with a bit of flexible room of spending more. This does not mean you cannot find quality preamps for affordable prices. With proper research, you should have the best preamp that you can use today.
When it comes to the overall performance, you can be sure it is going to be easy to pick a great preamp. From the list above, you can easily know what you can and cannot do with a model. It is always important that you get to pick the best based on your needs. Even if you are on a tight budget, we have still included models that are cheaper. You can be sure that the list has products for people with varying budgets.