For sale current Companion III Reference pure analog no electronic attenuators line stage with 47 position 1.5 dB steps. Gold Point Attenuators! Surface Mount NiCr Resistors
Note: 5 year Warranty parts and labor
Note: parts quality high standard! including Cardas RCA's
Gain: 23 dB
1 Hz to 500 kHz +0, -1dB
Maximum Output: 25V
THD: < .03% @ 2V
Noise: -98dB below
2V RMS output
Tube Complement: 3
ea. 6DJ8/6922, 2ea 12AU7
30 watts (detachable line cord)
= 3.6" (79 mm), width = 16" (381 mm), depth = 12" (241 mm)
Shipping Weight: 25
Notes: Has 5 Line
Inputs, Main Out and Tape out
You’ll need a firm grip in trying to lift the Companion III. Although
its shipping weight is listed at twenty pounds, it feels heavier. This is a
solid, well put together piece of gear. The faceplate consists of a
quarter-inch slab of brushed aluminum adorned by four large rotary knobs. The
first from the left is the source selector. It controls the choices for phono,
tuner, CD1, CD2 and tape. (Remember, this is a line stage. There isn’t any
You’ll need to connect your own.) The next
two knobs are for the left and right channel volume controls. They’re detented,
making it much easier to set the balance between left and right channels. The
last knob is the mode selector. It controls the mute and a/c on/off. There are two small blue lights at the
bottom center of the faceplate. The first indicates power-up. The second lights
up when you take the pre-amp out of mute. All controls are straightforward and
easy to use. Their solid feel is commensurate with a high quality pre-amp.
A peek inside reveals a well-laid out circuit board loaded with
high quality parts and the five tubes listed in the headnote.
The rear panel sports a total of fourteen RCA connectors
straightforward in their layout. They do not appear to be gold plated but are
of high quality nonetheless. There is also a conveniently placed fuse holder
and an IEC socket for the detachable power cord. (Something else to tweak.)
Aside from the sound of tube gear, another advantage the pre-amp
offers is the ability to tailor the sound by changing tubes. How many of you
have gone to the expense of chasing down NOS (new old stock) because you
absolutely must have Mullards or Telefunkens with their legendary
characteristics? Also Cryo treated JJ Tesla's work quit well ! In this case, there are only five tubes to contend with, but
that can still be expensive if your tastes run toward matched sets.
Fortunately, pre-amp tubes tend to last for quite a while.
Quality of parts and build is all well and
good, but they don’t mean a thing unless they swing. So, how does this pre-amp
sound? Very good, I’m glad to say. The overall character of the Companion III
tends to the warm side. This is not surprising, given its tube design.
I will gladly put this unit up against ARC REF#1 to REF #3
See Review from Bound for Sound!