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ART DJPRE II Phono Preamplifier
- RCA-type input R/L
- RCA-type output R/L
- Ground terminal
- Power Adapter Included
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From the manufacturer
The DJ PRE II (formerly named the "Phono MicroPRE") acts as an interface between your turntable and your audio recording / playback system. The analog input capacitance can be switched between 100pF and 200pF to optimize your phono cartridge response. A switchable low cut filter removes turntable rumble while leaving the audio pristine. The front gain trim control and signal/clip LED allow you to optimize the preamp's gain for a wide range of input sources. The built-in low noise phono preamp circuitry is highly accurate and precisely conforms to the RIAA standard. The line output jacks are low impedance and can be used with any sound card.
Housed in an all aluminum black anodized case, the DJ PRE II can be powered by a wide variety of external supplies. If you need to amplify and EQ your vinyl records to interface with your audio workstation, sound card, home stereo system or main monitor system, the DJ PRE II gives you flawless audio reproduction in a rugged and reliable package.
- High accuracy/low noise preamp
- Switchable low cut rumble filter
- Variable preamp gain
- Signal present/clip indicator
- Selectable cartridge loading
- RCA preamp outputs
- Heavy duty extruded chassis
- Designed and developed in the USA
ARTcessories are taking the audio world by storm and quickly becoming a popular brand with musicians, DJs and studio engineers everywhere around the World. Split, combine, mix, power... you name it. On stage, in the studio, in your living room, they’re easy to use and are built to last. For those times when you need a little box to fix a big need or to make more out of a smaller project, ARTcessories has you covered. You’ll discover a robust line of useful tools which include a complete range of direct boxes, headphone amps, small mixers, mic cable combiner/splitters and much more. ARTcessories are designed to deliver affordable solutions for a multitude of audio needs for any size project.
ART DJPREII Phono Preamplifier
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The gain control with clipping indication is pretty neat,green LED blinks red if signal clips.
The wallwart that came with the preamp has some heft to it (unlike the switching phone chargers). So I assume there is a transformer in there which is always a good thing. I don't hear any power supply noise coming through. Clean sound.
As others have said, the power on LED (blue) is way too bright. I had to cover it with electrical tape.
The capacitive coupling (100pF, 200pF) adjustment and low-cut filter are transparent buttons with an amber glow when depressed.
In the attached video, the line out of the DJPRE II is connected directly to the camera mic input.
I definitely recommend getting this.
My only complaints with it were that it has no on-off switch and that the power indicator is incredibly bright. Not wanting to stare at this glaring miniature sun at all hours and finding plugging/unplugging the unit more than a little inconvenient, I went and bought a $3 in-line switch from a hardware store and wired it into the power cord. Both problems solved!
The real trick to get exceptional sound out of this little gem is to feed it what it likes best... that is a diet of PURE 12 volt DC. For a cost of about $30 you can build your own 12 volt PURE DC power supply. I've posted a picture that shows the details about how to do this. This little simple DIY project also gives you the ability to conveniently turn the unit on/off from the front. This is a feature other reviewers have noticed the DJPRE II is missing and would sure be nice to have.
UPDATE Nov 2, 2013: Amazon moved the picture(s) I posted. To see picture(s) click on hyperlink of my reviewer name, then select the tab for "Images," and on that page scroll down and select hyperlink for "Image Gallery." You will find picture(s) and DIY instructions there.
Initially, I'll admit I was a little disappointed. While the sound was very good, there was a subtle but yet unmistakable 60 Hz hum that I just couldn't get rid of. All the grounding tricks in the world, and believe me, as a retired military electronics engineer, I know MANY grounding and RF/EMI shielding techniques, I could not eliminate the hum. I just couldn't live with the unwanted noise. The unit's only drawback turns out to be its own supplied power adapter/converter. The unit's operating voltage is spec'd at 9 to 12 volts (AC or DC). The DJPRE II that I received from Amazon was supplied with a 120V AC to 9V AC adapter. NOTE: As of the writing of this review Amazon Product Features says "12V DC (Adapter included)" - a little discrepancy, but no big deal.
I tried using other power adapters (I have many). I tried 12V DC, 9V AC (supplied with unit), and just to see how rugged this little dude is, I even tried a 15V DC adapter. The DJPRE II performed about the same, regardless of the power adapter used. That low level but annoying 60Hz hum was there in every instance.
I began researching the high end audiophile grade phono preamps costing between $2000 to $7000. Being a technical engineer, I check out the spec's very diligently. I noticed that some of the high-end preamps, although connected to a regular 120V AC wall outlet, actually use an internal relay switch that switches to internal "battery power when operating" and then when not in use, the internal battery is charged by the standard line voltage (converted and rectified to DC of course).
After a trip to my local electronics retailer, about $30 in miscellaneous parts, and a little creative ingenuity along with a can of spray paint and my prototype build time, I was ready to try out my theory. I plugged my custom built PURE 12V DC power supply into the DJPRE II and I was instantly transported to musical nirvana (and NO 60 Hz hum)!
FURTHER INSIGHT: If you check out the photos I posted, you will see that my system uses a non-resonant Sumiko HS12 headshell mounted with a Lyra Delos MC (moving coil) cartridge, that is fed to an Ortofon Verto step-up transformer where it is converted to the MM (moving magnet) output level required as input for the ART DJPRE II. The ART DJPRE II is NOT able to use a high-end, low voltage (typically .5 mV or less) MC cartridge output directly. The ART DJPRE II is designed for use with MM cartridges, output loading: 47 kOhm / 100 to 200 pF. The output range for MM cartridges is usually somewhere between 4 to 9 mV.
I highly recommend this product if you are willing to build a very simple 12V DC power supply. I guarantee you will be amazed at the sound quality that fully complies with RIAA standards. Happy listening to all.