Comments for page: MXR Preamp

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Posted by Steve L. June 17, 2014 - 02:18 pm
Hi DCinDC, It's good to hear a contrary point of view. I respect your opinion but I'm puzzled by the reaction you had to the MXR preamp. It's true that the jacks weren't gold plated but otherwise they have held up well for 30-plus years. The pots don't have the resin damping which the Japanese components did back then. But then, I didn't know of any American-made pots which did. While the resin gave pots a smooth feel, it was purely an aesthetic feature and didn't affect the electrical quality. Otherwise, the pots seem of good quality to me and have also held up well. As far as the cabinet is concerned, the thick, extruded aluminum front panel and oiled walnut sides gave me the impression of it being built like a tank. Moreover, it's built with a fiberglass PCB, which was unusual for consumer products. To me, its simple but attractive physical design eschews fancy frills and favors convenient functionality.

As far as performance is concerned, the specifications, backed-up by test reports and 30-years of happy listening, speak for themselves. The lack of a loudness switch (and tone controls) is by design. If the rest of your system is flat, such frequency response adjustments shouldn't be necessary. If the rest of your system isn't flat, those adjustments would probably not be sufficient for accurate sound. The issue should be addressed at the offending element. If I had to characterize the sound of the MXR preamp, the word that springs to mind is: transparent. It does nothing to alter the sound and I've never found fault with it in any way.

Having said all that, I would like to thank you for posting and sharing your thoughts.

Posted by DCinDC June 17, 2014 - 11:49 am
I bought one of these new from the AAFES catalog (service member BX) back when new for about $150.
I bought it for the features, like most people. I thought it was poorly constructed and performed poorly. The cheap rca jacks, pots and cabinet really put me off. I also really missed a loudness control. I returned it almost immediately. Still I always liked it's functionality. Thanks so much for your efforts at the schematics and collecting this info. Maybe I will try to recreate it with better components. I am trained electronics tech and have been inside many pieces of good stereo components. I consider the PL 4000 poorly made also. I had one of those around the same time and dumped it quick.

Posted by Steve L. June 15, 2014 - 12:37 pm
Hi Jim, Thank you for posting about your model 150. It's good to hear that all works well after all these years. Sorry that I don't have a clue about pricing for these, as they so rarely appear. I wish you well in finding a buyer. I'm sure that it will make someone happy.

Posted by Jim R June 15, 2014 - 12:12 pm
Bought my model 150 new in the early 80s, using all the features (equalizer, tape loops, etc.) for many years. Just recently hooked it back up and was happy to find everything works. This is all a prelude to selling the unit. Any ideas about pricing? Anyone out there interested ? If so, leave a comment with an email addr. and I'll get back.

Posted by Steve L. January 27, 2013 - 08:07 am
Hi Don, (Why did you have to wait for yours to be available? What did you use the mixing feature for?) I bought my Model 150 new, circa 1981. The mixing feature was important to me also, because I had a vision of having two turntables and recording realtime collections of tracks...

Posted by Don January 26, 2013 - 10:08 pm
Hello Steve et al
I bought the MXR System Preamp II to replace a dying Phase Linear 4000. The PL 4000 could fade from one input to another, so the MXR was the logic (and only) replacement I found. I had to wait for it to be available, and it was worth the wait. I use the MXR pretty much daily, works great even after all these years. It's the best piece of hi-fi I ever had.

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