Stereo equipment is one more significant variable that can greatly affect the Classic Vinyl Listening Experience. In addition to the quality issues surrounding turntables and preamps, amplifiers, receivers, and speakers also greatly affect overall quality of sound reproduction. It is worth reminding you that these variables affect all forms of music playback, including CDs and tape recordings.
When the discussion turns to the phono preamps (short for pre-amplifier) we are really getting down into minute details of the record groove in order to understand its role and its importance. It is essential that you understand the role of the phono preamp as it will affect the decisions that you will make about purchasing equipment and ultimately the pleasure derived from your “Classic Vinyl Listening Experience”.
Many amplifiers and receivers (a receiver is an AM/FM tuner and amplifier built in the same piece of equipment) have phono preamps built into them.
Like all components of a stereo system there are significant variations in quality in the preamps, which has significant effects on the quality of the playback of your records.
Preamps can be purchased as a separate stand-alone component for as little as $20 or you can spend $3000 or more! It should be obvious by now that a phono preamp is really, really important for proper playback of vinyl records. So let’s discuss preamps for a while.