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  1. #1

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    Default Input and Value for a Audible Illusions L1 Tube Preamplifier

    I am shopping for a tube Pre and there is one of the Audible Illusions L1 Tube Preamplifiers for sale here.
    Reviews sound pretty decent, but I can't find much on value for this one.
    I fouud one on AudioTrader from 09 that sold for $525.

    thanks

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  2. #2

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    Hard wired power cord, not good. It is to difficult to upgrade.

  3. #3

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    yeh, saw that... but not 'too' hard to change, when the time comes....

    any input on the $$/ value? they are asking $650?
    thanx

  4. #4

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    The price you've gotten is at the lower end of the spectrum for the L1. More often they're offered at 700-750. A broken leg kept me from investigating one in the $600 range a few years ago. Still am curious...

    Many love the AI preamps, although I saw a review of one yesterday that called its sound "cold"--That's not the majority opinion though it seems. Some of the AIs are rough on tubes, as they push them harder than most preamps do. I'm not sure if the L1 is part of that list, or if it's just the ones with phono stages as well. If you do a bit of research on AI there are some who think these preamps are tube killers and some who've had no issues. Read a smidgen here: LINK.

    Anyhoo, I'd be tempted at the price you're seeing. I don't imagine it would be hard to get your money back. If you do end up with it, please post a review here--I know of at least one person who'd be interested in reading about it!

    Jay

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    thanks Jay, I will check out your links.
    I am not to excited about a tube amp that is "Cold"... anti to the whole reason of having a tube amp, IMO
    I had not read that about 'tube killers', I will ask him about that.

  6. #6

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    Mind you, the "cold" comment was one person's take and not a common theme in reviews I've seen. Being difficult with tubes is more common (and easy to find discussion about on the internet). The good news: the preamps sound very good with the less-expensive Russian tubes that hold up to running hotter; the bad news is that at least some of the AI pre's aren't compatible with some of the vintage tubes that one can source.

    OK, I just stopped being lazy and looked up some old PMs that I've downloaded--I reached out to George Daniel at the time I was considering the L1 as I saw he had owned one--To paraphrase, he expressed regret at having sold it and indicated that in spite of AI's rep as hard on tubes, he never had an issue and did well with NOS Amperex tubes in his. He suspected that it was the Modulus 3 preamp (with phono stage) that was the guilty party. You might contact him for further interrogation () but that was the gist of his comments.

    Finding a tube pre remains high on my "to do" list, and the L1 remains one that I'm highly interested in. I'm kind of hoping that you decide to go for it and that it works out for you, but you'll have to be the one pulling the trigger! Good luck.

    Jay

    Edit: GD also mentioned that the headphone amp is a good one in the L1 if that holds appeal to you.
    Last edited by agfrost; 09-03-2012 at 12:43 PM.

  7. #7

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    thanks Jay, I am waiting to here back from the seller re getting together to hear it. AI also recommends the Solek (russian tubes) & Amperex tubes and says that tubes should last at least 2 years in their pre's.....
    Sounds good enough to spend my time checking it out.

    There is also one on the Klipch forum for $700 with a couple of sets of extra tubes (says $300 worth), but it from a single post seller and he has not answered any of the replies to his post...so not putting 'alot' of credance in that value, just from a reliability point of view.

    WE'll see what becomes of this :)

  8. #8

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    The AI- L-1 is a very good pre-- pair it up with a Belles 350 and you have a match made in heaven!!!
    JC approves....he told me so. (F-1 nut)

  9. #9

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    thanks george, that means alot coming from you :)
    now if I can just find a time to get together with the guy and listen to it.

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