Born Again Audiophile

No longer being a churchgoer I have no idea what it feels like to be born again in a religious way. I do know what it’s like seeing the audio heavens open when a new piece of equipment takes the music to heights of realism you have not heard before.

I’ve been an audiophile for over 40 years and have had some of the most reputable names in high fidelity in my listening room. Not until I began to replace components one at a time with PS Audio flagships did the experience of live concerts truly revisit my senses.

It started with the P15 power plant, followed by the BHK 250 and the DSD DAC. It now culminates with the BHK Signature preamp.

Previously a preamp non-believer, forum members made a compelling case for my at least trying the BHK. I am now listening to the Chesky recording of the Brahms Piano Concerto #2. The opening horn, far in the distance, grabbed my attention immediately and did not let go.

The soundstage is huge, both deep and wide. The instrument separation, a challenge to reproduce in a heavily orchestrated work by Brahms, is remarkable, as is the weight and clarity.

This 1967 recording by Antal Dorati and the London Symphony is a classic, and for good reason. I’ve been hearing it for years and I’ve never felt I was as much in the performance hall before. There’s air around the music that makes notes seem as if they float in space.

The sound is so resolving I would venture Gina Bachauer is playing a Bosendorfer piano, not a Steinway. The clarity and power of the lower registers can be easily heard. Maybe I’m wrong, but I have a 50/50 chance :slight_smile:

That all of this is due to the insertion of the BHK preamp after only 80 hours of play makes me look very much forward to the impact of further burn-in.

Fortunately, tracing the evolving changes in SQ as a component stretches its muscles just means that one can be born again many, many times, in an audio sort of way.


Amen brother

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Glad to hear that you are loving your BHK.

@psalvet . . . . . Adding the BHK pre to my system has also markedly improved the sound as compared to going directly from the DAC to the amp (DSsr). The thing is, the bass definition is noticeably better . . . . more controlled, better defined, less rounded, tighter, etc. . . . . So, I don’t think added distortion/coloration is the reason - one of the assumptions about why adding a preamp could possibly benefit sound reproduction . . . . . Unless added distortion is known to create better, more controlled/defined bass response!

Stop, please stop. I thought I had my system simplified. NUC/ROCK to Matrix with AES to my 8cs. My plan was to go to ethernet into the 8cs when they are roon ready and get rid of the Matrix. Then I thought, Wait! I have those freed up XLR/AES ports on my 8cs. I’d like to get into vinyl again. I need a turntable, phono pre-amp (the new Stellar of course), and a pre-amp (BHK for sure given your excellent write-up). If I’m going to add all these new components, I should upgrade my P5 to P12 at least. Thanks for helping me spend more money. :slight_smile:

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You are most welcome, tmurray1. I know just how you feel. Unless you are having a hard time putting food on the table, or have competing hobbies, spending on audio can bring great joy so long as the components are high quality and get along well in community. Have fun with the improvements!

I glossed over reading that you’ll be needing a new turntable. I’m going to be selling my own excellent analog rig in Audiogon. Contact me privately for details if you are interested in learning more…

You won’t regret getting a VPI or similar TT with a Stellar Phono preamp. It will let you enjoy music like no CD system can. It will be so much more natural and real sounding. Digital is fine, but Analog is King!!! As good as my digital is, it’s not in the league of my analog rig.