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Best MM phono under $500

 

New member
Username: Analog_sergio

Post Number: 1
Registered: Oct-10
Hi there,

I am looking for the best value phono under $500, at the moment I have a MM Cambridge 540p preamp, but I think that I could get something better. Please advise, thank you.

My turntable is a Pro-Ject RPM 5.1
Cartridge is Ortofon 2M Red
Amp is NAIM XS
Speakers are Totem Model One Signature"

thanks a million for the help

Sergio
 

Platinum Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 13369
Registered: Feb-05
A lot of excellent choices at that price but you won't get the goody out of them with a 540P. In fact you could get alot more from thr 2M Red with better phono pre amp. Nearly every brand makes a credible contender at that price. Ortofon, Clearaudio, Goldring, Nagaoka and so on and so forth. Also HMOC's (high output moving coil) like the Dynavector 10x5 would work and fit the budget.
 

New member
Username: Analog_sergio

Post Number: 2
Registered: Oct-10
Hi Art,

thank you very much for the advice, I think that I messed up things; what I meant to say is that I am looking to upgrade my phono stage, I am looking to get rid of the Cambridge 540p, but I don't know what to upgrade it to, would you have any suggestions? I am looking at the NAIM phonostage ($500) but would be there something better for the same amount of money?

thank you
 

Platinum Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 13370
Registered: Feb-05
The Clearaudio Nano is a very nice phono pre amp for $350. It has variable gain and adjustable gain whic would support an upgrade path with your cartridge. Also the budget SimAudio phono pre amp is on close out at a couple of websites last I saw which puts it under $500. The Naim Stageline N is one of my favorites and I've listened to it with an XS and was very impressed.
 

New member
Username: Analog_sergio

Post Number: 3
Registered: Oct-10
Thank you Art, I think that the Naim will be the way to go, I just wanted to make sure that I was not making a mistake going that way, Thanks a million.

Sergio
 

Gold Member
Username: Stu_pitt

Stamford, Connecticut USA

Post Number: 4054
Registered: May-05
Naim's Stageline is top notch IMO. I also like the Simaudio LP3, but would easily take a Stageline over it, especially with a Nait XS. The Nait XS has a powered input for a Stageline, so no need for an external power supply.

For a more flexible phono stage that'll sound excellent, you may want to look into Dynavector's P-75. I think it retails for about $750 or so, and can possibly be had second hand for your budget. It's more flexible, so it'll handle a wider variety of cartridges. It may have a sonic edge, but not enough to justify the cost over the Stageline IMO.
 

New member
Username: Analog_sergio

Post Number: 4
Registered: Oct-10
Thank you Stu_Pitt,
I have a question for you, I downloaded the manual for the Phono, and XS but I couldn't figure out how it would connect to the XS or if I have to buy a custom cable to connect this together, would you know how this works tia.
Sergio
 

Gold Member
Username: Stu_pitt

Stamford, Connecticut USA

Post Number: 4057
Registered: May-05
The manual says to connect a Stageline to the AUX 2 input, which is a DIN socket. I'm pretty sure the Stageline will come with the appropriate cable. Their other sources do, and I can't see why a Stageline wouldn't. If not, your Naim dealer should be able to sell you one and tell you what exactly you need.

I got the information from page 22 of the manual. Last paragraph on the left before the notes.
 

New member
Username: Analog_sergio

Post Number: 5
Registered: Oct-10
Thank you Stu Pitt, I guess you have more patience that I, thanks again.

Sergio
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