Choosing a Phono: Parasound zphono or Yaqin MS-23b?

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by redflag, Aug 6, 2018.

  1. redflag

    redflag Forum Resident Thread Starter

    I'll be getting a Yaqin M-13s in about six months to replace my Onkyo TX-8050 so I'm currently looking at getting a phono. I mostly listen to rock and hard bop. Sabbath and Cannoball Adderley are equally likely to be played here. So, I'm wondering which of the above phono preamps will work best for me and if anyone had experience with either. Will a solid state phono be the way to go to tighten things up or tubes for that all-tube warmness?
     
  2. Helom

    Helom Forum Resident

    Location:
    U.S.
    Having owned the Z-Phono for several years, I fully endorse it, especially for those genres. I hate to make a blanket statement that it's the best in its price range, but probably is. It's extremely quiet for a budget preamp. Parasound customer support is unbeatable as well.
     
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  3. G B Kuipers

    G B Kuipers Forum Resident

    Location:
    Netherlands
    I have the Yaqin and find it an amazing preamp. After rolling some tubes and fitting an aftermarket power cord, it competes with my EAR 843P. If I have to choose, the EAR is probably a bit more dynamic, but they sound really close.

    The Parasound is probably great as well. It's just, with every affordable ss phono preamp I have heard, I was missing something. Finding the EAR felt like coming home.
     
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  4. redflag

    redflag Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Thanks for the replies!! I went with the Yaqin and it should be here tomorrow!

    GB Kuipers, do you have any tube recommendations?
     
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  5. G B Kuipers

    G B Kuipers Forum Resident

    Location:
    Netherlands
    The stock Chinese tubes sounded a little muffled to me. I tried the commonly available New Sensor new production Genalex Gold Lion and Mullard. I also tried the 12ax7 that came with my Line Magnetic amp.

    All were an improvement over the stock tubes. The Gold Lions sound very warm, with big and well defined bass. The "Mullards" sound a little leaner in the bass (still nice), but they compensate with a very insightful treble region. I was pleasantly surprised by these.

    NOS tubes will probably be better, but I did not want to fall into that rabbit hole.

    Have fun!
     
    H8SLKC likes this.

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