Welcome to the AudioShark Forums.
Results 1 to 19 of 19
  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2022
    Location
    Adelaide, Australia
    Posts
    26

    Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

    I have a pair of X260.8 monoblocks arriving later this year and am in a quandary about what to drive these with. I have an Auralic digital front end which also accepts analog that I have been using to drive my power amps. However, when trialling an X250.8 earlier this year felt i needed a bit more oomph than just using the Auralic, hence a preamp. The question is which one.

    Do I go for a Pass Labs line stage, or something more Swiss army knife like with DAC like an ML No.5206. The latter would considerably simplify the number of boxes. Right now I have the option of a near new demo XP22, which is actually in the country, so there is no waiting (unlike the X260.8 and the ML No.5206 if I went that route). There is a certain attractiveness of something that is immediately available, but it’s very difficult to demo anything atm in order to be sure. There will no doubt be more single box devices come out in the future like the ML and the Boulder 812, which are both competent preamps and DACs at the same time, which will reduce complexity as well as challenge the notion and benefits of a separate line stage preamp.

    I probably know the answer to this question, but would appreciate anyone’s thoughts on the suitability of an XP22 with the X260.8, or any other pre or pre/DAC for that matter in the same league.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    St. Louis, MO, USA
    Posts
    2,386

    Re: Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

    I would go with XP22. I'm a fan of same brand synergy.

    I have not heard the 5206. I used to have a Pass X250, it didn't have good synergy with Levinson but it was the older 326. Nevertheless, I wouldn't purchase without a return option.

    Another preamp with good synergy with Pass would be the Coda 07x. It performs beyond it's price. Neither it or Pass would had DAC
    Aurender ACS10 w/Audioquest Diamond USB,
    Mark Levinson #526, 532h, JBL 4367's
    Clearaudio Performance DC w/Maestro cart
    Clarus Concerto & their Crimson cables

    HT: Marantz AV8003, Linn 5125, JBL SAM3ha, Revel s30,
    SVS PC13 Ultra
    Transparent, Analysis Plus & Tributaries. PS Audio filtering
    Sony XBR-75X940D & BDP
    Parasound P6, Coda CSX, Artisan speakers

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2018
    Location
    Tampa
    Posts
    463

    Re: Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

    XP22 gets lots of love on this forum. I heard the Boulder 812 at Mike’s store and it sounded great. Not to mention looks great. And like you said, takes care of streamer/DAC/pre.
    Lumin X1 | Enleum 23r | Scansonic MB3.5 B
    Wireworld Platinum Eclipse 8 ICs | Wireworld Platinum Starlight 8 Ethernet (L1) | Owens Corning OS2 SM Fiber (X1)
    HiDiamond Genesis Big XLR signal cable
    Zu IBIS speaker cable
    Ayre L-x5e Line Filter (amp and X1) | Keces P3 LPS w/ Uptone Audio Saphire DC cable (switch and L1)
    Shunyata Alpha ZiTron Digital, Transparent Premium Powerlink MM2 PCs
    Lumin L1 NAS | Qobuz

    Tweaks: Artesania Audio damper | Shakti Air | Shakti Onlines | Synergistic Big MIG footers | Alto-extremo Lyd footers | Ginko Cloud 15 (X1) | Carbon fiber shelf (amp)

    On the lookout for: SOtM sNHG-10G switch

  4. #4
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2022
    Location
    Adelaide, Australia
    Posts
    26

    Re: Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

    Quote Originally Posted by jmusica View Post
    I heard the Boulder 812 at Mike’s store and it sounded great. Not to mention looks great.
    Also heard an 812 driving an XA30.8 recently at a local dealer, sounded excellent. There is a definite attraction to a single device that does a number of things, but I would want it to do those things at a very high level. I already have a very good digital front end, don’t really want to go backwards, but as I said, it’s very difficult to demo stuff atm, not to mention have actual supply available. At the risk of more boxes, the XP22 might be the best solution!

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Sacramento
    Posts
    879

    Re: Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

    How easy would it be for you to find a buyer for the XP-22 if you decide to move on later? With a 10-month wait in the USA, it should be easy to "Pass" the preamp on in Australia if you decide to.
    Contributor to stereotimes.com

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    lachen / sz
    Posts
    931

    Re: Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Peabody View Post
    I would go with XP22. I'm a fan of same brand synergy.
    +1, absolutely!!

    mjs, the xp22 is a no brainer, plus you get it straight and at a reduced price.

  7. #7

    Re: Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

    The XP-22 is a fantastic partner - very low noise floor and great dynamics. Folks tend to also like ARC tube pre’s with Pass amps.
    Sean

    Lumin T2
    Pass Labs XP 22 & X260.8
    Magico A3
    Shunyata Research PS8/Defender; Alpha/Delta/Venom NR PC; Alpha Ethernet/Venom IC/SC
    HRS E1

  8. #8
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2022
    Location
    Adelaide, Australia
    Posts
    26

    Re: Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

    Demo XP22 now gone unfortunately, missed it by a few hours.

  9. #9
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2022
    Location
    Adelaide, Australia
    Posts
    26

    Re: Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

    Just pulled the trigger on a new XP22, available in 3-4 weeks.

  10. #10
    Super Moderator
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    NY
    Posts
    18,660

    Re: Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

    Congratulations, it’s a wonderful preamp.
    Fleetwood Deville by Oswald Mills Audio, Vienna Acoustics Haydn Jubilee, Wharfedale Linton w/ stands, Klipsch RB-75, Klipsch RP-160M.

    Job INTegrated. Luxman L-595aSE

    NAD C 658 streamer.

    First Watt SIT-3, Job 250 Monos, NuForce STA200, AkitikA GT-102 amp, ASL Wave monos, Dennis Had 45 monos. Absolute Audio Labs PCF 25 amp (improved First Watt F7 super clone)

    Topping D90, RME Audio ADI-2 DAC FS, ModWright Ultimate Sony XA-5400ES.

    Burmester 948, McIntosh MCLK12, Kimber Kable, Siltech, Cardas, Avanti Audio cables.

  11. #11
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Location
    Denmark
    Posts
    619

    Re: Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

    Congratulations with your new XP22 , will be interesting to hear your impressions with it.
    Flemming

    Lumin X1
    Accuphase E-470
    Focus Audio FS788

    Inter connect : Nordost Frey 2
    LS cable : Yter
    Power Cables : Nordost Frey 2
    Nordost QB8
    Fibercable for feeding the Lumin X1
    Rack : Finite Elemente Pagode

  12. #12
    Audioshark
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Sarasota, FL
    Posts
    28,977

    Re: Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

    Fabulous pre. Congrats.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    My Systems: http://www.audioshark.org/showthread...481#post158481

    "We can hear everything we measure, but we can't measure everything we hear. Let your ears be your guide."

    Dealer for: Aqua Hi-Fi, Aurender, AudioQuest Cables & Power Products, Avantgarde Acoustics, Avid HiFi, Berkeley Audio Design, Block Audio, Boulder Amplifiers, Bowers & Wilkins (B&W), Bryston, Chord, Classe’ Audio, Degritter Record Cleaning Machines, Enleum (Bakoon), Esoteric, Finite Elemente, FirstWatt, Focal Loudspeakers and Headphones, Franco Serblin Loudspeakers, Furutech, Fyne Audio Loudspeakers, GigaFoil, Harbeth Loudspeakers, Hegel, HiFi Man, HiFi Rose, Innuos, ISO Acoustics, Keces Power Supplies, Kharma Loudspeakers and Electronics, Koetsu Cartridges, Kuzma Turntables, Lumin, Luxman, Magico Loudspeakers, MBL Speakers & Electronics, MSB Technologies, MySonicLabs Phono Cartridges, Naim Audio, Nordost Cables, Ortofon, Pass Labs, Quadraspire, Rega Turntables and Electronics, Shunyata Research, SimAudio, Stein Music Products, Stillpoints, VAC, Vicoustics, Viva Audio, Vivid Audio Loudspeakers, VPI Industries, WireWorld Cables.

    https://suncoastaudio.com/
    Phone: 941-932-0282
    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Suncoast-Au...1105178279194/

  13. #13
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    St. Louis, MO, USA
    Posts
    2,386

    Re: Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

    Congrats
    Aurender ACS10 w/Audioquest Diamond USB,
    Mark Levinson #526, 532h, JBL 4367's
    Clearaudio Performance DC w/Maestro cart
    Clarus Concerto & their Crimson cables

    HT: Marantz AV8003, Linn 5125, JBL SAM3ha, Revel s30,
    SVS PC13 Ultra
    Transparent, Analysis Plus & Tributaries. PS Audio filtering
    Sony XBR-75X940D & BDP
    Parasound P6, Coda CSX, Artisan speakers

  14. #14
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2022
    Location
    Adelaide, Australia
    Posts
    26

    Re: Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

    X260.8’s arrived this morning. Have some rearranging to do and still waiting on some Solidsteel plinths to arrive on Wednesday. Will be a test of patience to see if I can wait till then Great stuff!


  15. #15
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2022
    Location
    Adelaide, Australia
    Posts
    26

    Re: Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

    Well, blow me down again. The Solidsteel plinths arrived a bit later today, so I have set the amps up. Only a short period listening so far, amps are brand new, so a bit of running in to do, but already I like what I hear. Imaging is spectacular, bass notes are palpable. More soon

  16. #16
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Location
    Ohio, USA
    Posts
    155

    Re: Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

    Woo-hoo! Congrats and Enjoy!
    Electronics: Pass Labs XP-22, Pass Labs X250.8
    Digital: Sony UBP-X800M Transport, Auralic Aries G1, Bryston BDA-3
    Analog: Pro-Ject X2 w/ Ortofon 2M Black, Decware Custom Zen Triode Phonostage (ZP3)
    Speakers: Janszen Audio Valentina P8, SVS SB13-Ultra
    Other: David Laboga Custom Audio/Shunyata/Audioquest cabling, PS Audio PowerPlant 15

  17. #17
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2022
    Location
    Adelaide, Australia
    Posts
    26

    Re: Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

    OK, some further comments. Have now wrangled the 260.8’s in behind the 3.7i’s, both on Solidsteel S3-A plinths, which arrived shortly after the amps, am quite impressed with these plinths btw. Spaced from the walls to provide enough ventilation. Have had them on for a couple of hours so far. A couple of initial observations, apart from the fact that I am very pleased so far.

    Soundstage and Imaging
    Significant improvement, both in definition of instruments and spatial positioning

    Detail
    There has been a significant improvement in the amount of detail presented, all making things closer to reality. I could best describe this as an ability to decipher extreme harmonic complexity and to separate and delineate instruments, voices, etc. I’ll give you a couple of examples. I am not a huge (or any sort of) Enya fan, but the start of the track Watermark on the album of the same name presents a wall of sound. The X260.8 is able to separate this “noise” into individual sound sources that make sense, which I haven’t previously experienced. On the Clapton album Unplugged, in the track Tears in Heaven, there’s a lot going on in the background, perhaps not a wall of sound, but a lot of stuff. Now, The X260.8 enables me to clearly hear several female back up singers who are down in the mix, again, something I hadn’t heard before.

    All very good so far, more thoughts to come later.




  18. #18
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2022
    Location
    Adelaide, Australia
    Posts
    26

    Re: Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

    Review of X260.8 monoblocks from s few days ago from Positive Feedback/Enjoy the Music

    Pass Labs X260.8 Monoblock Amplifiers - Positive Feedback

  19. #19
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    SE Pa
    Posts
    1,696

    Re: Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

    Quote Originally Posted by mjs View Post
    OK, some further comments. Have now wrangled the 260.8’s in behind the 3.7i’s, both on Solidsteel S3-A plinths, which arrived shortly after the amps, am quite impressed with these plinths btw. Spaced from the walls to provide enough ventilation. Have had them on for a couple of hours so far. A couple of initial observations, apart from the fact that I am very pleased so far.

    Soundstage and Imaging
    Significant improvement, both in definition of instruments and spatial positioning

    Detail
    There has been a significant improvement in the amount of detail presented, all making things closer to reality. I co

    All very good so far, more thoughts to come later.
    Congrats on your acquisition ! As a fellow X260.8 owner I suspect your long term happiness will be as good as mine !
    Cheers ! …. Dave

AudioShark - The Best High End Audio Discussion forum.

AudioShark forum is a leading forum site for High End Audio Discussion, Stereo System Discussion, Home Theater System Discussion, Best Home Stereo System Discussion, Home Theater Installation Discussion etc.

The AudioShark forum was created for sharing the passion of high-end Audio. We have Audiophiles from all over the world participating and sharing their knowledge. From novice to experts, you will find a friendly environment for discussing about High End Audio, Stereo System, Home Theater System, Home Stereo System, Home Theater Installation, Amplifiers, Speakers, Subwoofers, Integrated System, Acoustic treatments & Digital Room Corrections and many more.

At AudioShark, we also have incorporated an exciting Marketplace where members can peruse terrific buys on used gear, as well as meet dealers and discuss the purchase of new gear.

We are as crazy about this hobby as you are! So come on in and join us! Audioshark.org the Friendliest Audio Forum!

Industry Participation Disclosure : The owner and administrator of Audioshark is the owner of Suncoast Audio LLC in Sarasota Florida. Suncoast Audio has a full brick and mortar presence in Sarasota with several great show rooms with many world class brands. More information can be found at http://www.suncoastaudio.com

Audioshark is a community of like minded individuals. Audioshark welcomes participation from all manufacturers and owners of all brands and products. It is our belief that online forums provide a community of like minded audiophiles and music lovers to encourage the growth of this wonderful hobby.

Sincerely,
The Audioshark.org Team

Preamplifier for X260.8 Monoblocks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •