Conrad Johnson ET5 Preamplifier
Includes the owner's manual, power cord, and original packaging. Serial # 2861155.
This preamp is less than a year old and is in brand new condition. The customer ordered a replacement tube as the stock one didn’t last, and wanted me to sell him something where I could guarantee no problems. I told him he may have to do this over and over because the ET5 has 25dB of gain and is simply going to burn through tubes by design. So he traded it in on a PrimaLuna DiaLogue Premium preamp, and he’s ecstatic (the PrimaLuna is only $3199).
Look kids….when you use a preamp, you are not adding ANY gain. You are dropping gain (volume) by typically 6dB OR MORE. So when you have a preamp with 25, 26, 27, or even 30dB OF GAIN (like the Audible Illusions) you have to do something with it. More like deal with it, in the form of thermal noise, microphony, and short tube life. That’s why you can’t use super-sexy tubes in this preamp. Same thing with Aesthetix, Audible Illusions, and so on.
So, if you buy this preamp, buy a Russian 6H23-EB 6922 variant and it will hold up. The problem is made worse if you have efficient speakers 93dB efficient or higher. Before you buy any preamp, read this page as it has some prudent advice: http://www.primaluna-usa.com/how-to-buy-a-preamp