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  1. #1

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    Default Judge this preamp

    Hi all...
    Met someone online willing to sell a Xiang Sheng 725A preamp with extra tubes...comes with the original chinese tubes. Never heard of this company, and not much about it on the web which scares me. Not sure if it's a decent little known brand, or shiny junk. I will have pics if you want to see it, but I have seen some and it looks almost brand new...but not the highest quality. Would be paired with my 2 channel setup in my signature.

    Thanks for any input!

    James
    2 Channel/HT:
    Sony SS-M9 P's (ES version)
    Sony SS-M1CN Center Channel
    Polk RT800 Surround Speakers
    Odyssey Stratos Dual Mono Amplifiers
    TAD 150 Signature Tube Preamp
    Harman Kardon HK354
    Sony SACD Player

  2. #2

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    Default Some pictures

    Here are some pictures...any opinions would be lovely!

    thanks,

    James
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version

Name:	Xiang sheng tube preamp 006.jpg‎
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Name:	Xiang sheng tube preamp 016.jpg‎
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    2 Channel/HT:
    Sony SS-M9 P's (ES version)
    Sony SS-M1CN Center Channel
    Polk RT800 Surround Speakers
    Odyssey Stratos Dual Mono Amplifiers
    TAD 150 Signature Tube Preamp
    Harman Kardon HK354
    Sony SACD Player

  3. #3

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    Default

    Is it cheap enough to give it a whirl? Or would you be pissed off if you didn't like it and spend that money?

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  4. #4

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    $200 dollars. I can't find anything about this company on the internet. It looks like it's in great condition, but also looks (I guess looks can be deceiving) like it's got cheap parts....not sure even what to think about it...was hoping someone had first hand experience with this company.
    2 Channel/HT:
    Sony SS-M9 P's (ES version)
    Sony SS-M1CN Center Channel
    Polk RT800 Surround Speakers
    Odyssey Stratos Dual Mono Amplifiers
    TAD 150 Signature Tube Preamp
    Harman Kardon HK354
    Sony SACD Player

  5. #5

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    Default

    It looks cool anyhow.

  6. #6

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    Same styling as Vincent Audio.
    "He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you." Friedrich Nietzsche

  7. #7

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    IF you've seen it you should be able to "demo" it.
    It's cheap enough and looks nice.
    Surprisingly a lot of the "chi-fi" sounds pretty good especially with a little rolling to your system.
    $200 isn't much at all for a nice looking, good working tube preamp.
    Many of the companies are manufacturing units for other companies and occasionally will put their own name on the same units.

  8. #8

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    Default

    For $200 i'd give it a shot.
    I don't read the newsssspaperssss because dey aaaallllllllll...... have ugly print.

  9. #9

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    Default

    I haven't actually seen it...more like, looked at the pictures :)

    Thanks for the input so far...would love to hear more opinions and info. Thanks...

    James
    2 Channel/HT:
    Sony SS-M9 P's (ES version)
    Sony SS-M1CN Center Channel
    Polk RT800 Surround Speakers
    Odyssey Stratos Dual Mono Amplifiers
    TAD 150 Signature Tube Preamp
    Harman Kardon HK354
    Sony SACD Player

  10. #10

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    Default

    ALSO...I find literally NOTHING about this online. When I search, I get a lot fo hits for the 708 and the 728, but the the 725. The preamp in the pics looks like a bigger version of the headphone preamp. This is bothersome to me. Anyone have any info on this specific model?
    2 Channel/HT:
    Sony SS-M9 P's (ES version)
    Sony SS-M1CN Center Channel
    Polk RT800 Surround Speakers
    Odyssey Stratos Dual Mono Amplifiers
    TAD 150 Signature Tube Preamp
    Harman Kardon HK354
    Sony SACD Player

  11. #11

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    This is America. The pre is innocent until proven guilty.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by George Grand View Post
    This is America. The pre is innocent until proven guilty.
    Mountain Dew on monitor. Thanks!!! :D
    I don't read the newsssspaperssss because dey aaaallllllllll...... have ugly print.

  13. #13

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    Give it a whirl for 200 bones you have nothing to loose. Some of the Chinese stuff with NOS tubes might really surprise you. I admit it is a 50/50 crap shoot because some of the Chinese gear is very poorly put together and they don;t use the most logical, tried and true circuits.

    Even if you demo it and sell it for $150 if you don't like it you're only out $50 to try something that might turn out to be a nice sounding piece.

    H9

    P.s. The above advice is assuming the unit looks nice and functions as intended.
    "Appreciation of audio is a completely subjective human experience. Measurements can provide a measure of insight, but are no substitute for human judgment. Why are we looking to reduce a subjective experience to objective criteria anyway? The subtleties of music and audio reproduction are for those who appreciate it. Differentiation by numbers is for those who do not".--Nelson Pass

    Pass Aleph 30; Eastern Electric Mini Max; Adcom GDA600; MIT S3/Z Pc; SDA 1C; Squeezebox; Tubes add soul!

  14. #14
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    I would give it a shot. It will give you the opportunity to try out the tube/sand magic plus if you don't like it you can always flip it. Also as stated above you could roll in some NOS tubes which would make it sound like a completely different beast.

    I'm using the combination of tube preamp and sand amp and it's nothing short of spectacular. The only difference is that I can't roll tubes in but I don't need to because of the great sounding perfornance.
    Last edited by hearingimpared; 01-25-2010 at 12:07 PM.

  15. #15

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    Default

    Does it have a remote?

  16. #16
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    Probably a nice grab for $200. I've heard of people modding the heck out of Chinese units if you wanted to go that route, but I'm assuming it wouldn't disappoint for the price.

    http://www.xshn.com/en/display.asp?id=24

  17. #17

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    Probably worth a try. It's only $200.

    That looks a lot like Sheng Ya gear. I wouldn't be surprised if it was made in their plant. I heard a lot of Asian gear sell under different names depending where they're going to be sold. The HiFi scene is much bigger in Asia so there are tons of gear. Some good, some bad.
    CD Player: Original CD-A8T
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    "I would rather have a cup of tone than an ocean of power" **Dr. Harvey Rosenberg**

  18. #18

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    I wouldn’t do it. Is that what you really want, a Xiang Sheng preamp?
    O

  19. #19

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    Default

    I'm with outlander. I don't trust Chinese made stuff. I don't like their tubes, or audio/video equipment. I personally have not seen/heard one thing made to even close to as high a quality as a U.S./Japan/U.K based company. It always breaks in about 6 months as well (in my experience).

    Greg

    Try this instead (used for about $300.00 to 350.00)

    http://www.amchome.com/content/amc-cvt1030-series

    P.S. Make sure you get one with the tube sockets though. (The 1030s or as model)
    Last edited by headrott; 01-26-2010 at 07:24 PM.

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by headrott View Post
    I'm with outlander. I don't trust Chinese made stuff. I don't like their tubes, or audio/video equipment. I personally have not seen/heard one thing made to even close to as high a quality as a U.S./Japan/U.K based company. It always breaks in about 6 months as well (in my experience).

    Greg

    Try this instead (used for about $300.00 to 350.00)

    http://www.amchome.com/content/amc-cvt1030-series

    P.S. Make sure you get one with the tube sockets though. (The 1030s or as model)
    You should get out more.
    "Appreciation of audio is a completely subjective human experience. Measurements can provide a measure of insight, but are no substitute for human judgment. Why are we looking to reduce a subjective experience to objective criteria anyway? The subtleties of music and audio reproduction are for those who appreciate it. Differentiation by numbers is for those who do not".--Nelson Pass

    Pass Aleph 30; Eastern Electric Mini Max; Adcom GDA600; MIT S3/Z Pc; SDA 1C; Squeezebox; Tubes add soul!

  21. #21

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    Antique Sound Lab, Jolida, Original, Sheng Ya, Music Angel, Dussun, Chang Lighspeed, Yaqin, Bada, Xindak, and the list goes on and on.

    There are great Chinese gear out there that can compete with the good stuff from elsewhere. I like my Original cd player more than a Rega Apollo. I sold the Rega.
    Last edited by organ; 01-26-2010 at 11:49 PM.
    CD Player: Original CD-A8T
    Pre: Antique Sound Lab Passive T1-X DT
    Amp: NAD C270
    Speakers: B&W DM6
    "I would rather have a cup of tone than an ocean of power" **Dr. Harvey Rosenberg**

  22. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by heiney9 View Post
    You should get out more.
    You aren't suggesting, to China are you?:D

  23. #23

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    Buy American when you can.
    Please. Please contact me a ben62670 @ yahoo.com. Make sure to include who you are, and you are from Polk so I don't delete your email. Also I am now physically unable to work on any projects. If you need help let these guys know. There are many people who will help if you let them know where you are.
    Thanks
    Ben

  24. #24

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    Default

    Here's the same thing on Ebay for $199.00 plus $32.00 shipping new & direct from Hong Kong.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Xiang-Sheng-728A...item3ca9877b1f

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by ben62670 View Post
    Buy American when you can.
    That may have worked in the '70s but I think it is a moot point in 2010.

  26. #26

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    Here is an email I received from the seller!

    "James,

    It is a very good pre-amp. If your not happy with it -just send it back to me !

    I work on a trading desk.....I do not make any dough on this stuff - I "Tinker" so much buying old and NOS tubes....and cables - always end up losing money.

    I have $75 vested in Tube upgrades for the pre-amp. Has wide "Extensions" in treble and bass which are very impressive for the price.

    "Understand" Tube upgrades make a big difference over the stock Chinese Tubes.

    Likely will get more dough if I list it on Ebay.....lot work getting it "Right" with proper tubes .

    James your a nice guy - follow your "Comfort" level this stuff is so subjective it is hard. I promise this pre-amp will give a Much "Warmer" sound with

    great clarity -if that is what your after. I hate the "Cool" sound of integrated amps and pre-amps.


    - - - - - - - - -- - - - - -

    I'm guessing with the upgraded tubes, it would make this very worth while? How would that compare to some of the other preamps in the other thread that people are suggesting: Eirc HF85, Cary AE83, etc.

    Thanks for the continued info.

    James
    2 Channel/HT:
    Sony SS-M9 P's (ES version)
    Sony SS-M1CN Center Channel
    Polk RT800 Surround Speakers
    Odyssey Stratos Dual Mono Amplifiers
    TAD 150 Signature Tube Preamp
    Harman Kardon HK354
    Sony SACD Player

  27. #27

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    Didn't know they still built preamps with bass/treble controls in the 21st century.

    The good thing is that he's offering to take it back if you don't like it. If you know the guy and trust him, I say go for it.

    Oh, and there is great sounding, well built Chinese gear out there.
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  28. #28

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    Just read the specs in the ebay ad. It says output impedance is 50K ohm. This is for sure a typo. If it's 500 ohm you're fine, but if it's 5k ohm you might have issues pairing it with an amp unless the amp has an input impedance of 100K ohm Try to get the real specs from your seller.
    _________________________________________________
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  29. #29

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    Ricardo...

    Found this online: http://www.xshn.com/en/display.asp?id=24

    Not sure if it's an 'official' website, but it's better than looking on ebay or something for specs. To be honest, I don't know what any of them mean :) Any further comments based on this?

    Thanks,

    James
    2 Channel/HT:
    Sony SS-M9 P's (ES version)
    Sony SS-M1CN Center Channel
    Polk RT800 Surround Speakers
    Odyssey Stratos Dual Mono Amplifiers
    TAD 150 Signature Tube Preamp
    Harman Kardon HK354
    Sony SACD Player

  30. #30
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    Chinese electronic product. There's a handful of these "companies" taking advantage of the demand for inexpensive tube-type audio products. Build is mediocre at best. Some people like 'em, some don't.

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