TVC vs 'normal' passive pre - don't get it

Just a (quite possibly stupid, but I’ll live with it) question about passive pre’s.

Over the years, I’ve tried a fair few passive pre’s, in the £50 - 500 (in case it makes a difference) price range and, without exception, they have left me mourning the loss of energy / Dynamics.

Now, I have my first TVC pre and no such problem: why is that?

Let the piss taking commence.

You are deluded, TVCs are shit as well. without exception., and I have heard very expensive TVC pre-amps drain the life out of very good systems.

Pretty heavy start, but hey, thanks for the explanation :+1:

Try something thicker and maybe more sparkly

The theory with inductive volume controls is that there is no discarding of energy. But they can introduce various other phenomena.

Thank you Guy

There certainly is a lot less energy loss and, from what I can tell, no other, obviously discernible, negative effects.

I have a Horn Shoppe The Truth Passive pre amp that Arthur Salvatore gives an A+ too and rates it the best he has heard. (Going for £500)

1 Like

Happy with my TVC Dave (for now :grinning:)

I think a TVC needs careful system matching, or as stated already it can suck the life out of the music. When it works though it’s pretty good.

Check the input impedance of your power amp?

Also check the output impedance of the pre. It has to drive the capacitance of the interconnect cables. This could be a few hundred picofarads and if the output impedance of the pre (strictly speaking in parallel with the input imedance of the power amp) is more than a few tens of kilohms then treble roll-off can happen.


1 Like

had about 10 plus TVC passive pre amps , only one was a bit lifeless for my liking [stereoknight] . the rest were very dynamic . the best being the music first baby ref v2 which was stunning really . it was one of our AA members who got me in to TVC pre amps many years ago . currently using a 360 quid schiit saga passive in buffered form with absolutely superb results currently .

What was your experience with it? If you don’t mind me asking.

I have tried a couple and found that when driven by a source with a very low output impedance it could sound really nice and introduced a lot of that calmness that good transformers can deliver, however used with a higher output impedance source, such as most of my valve stuff, they just sounded lifeless meh
Even when at their best neither did proper kick ass bass dynamics and the top end was not a clean as a good line stage, but as usual ymmv

1 Like

I must have been very lucky then, because I don’t have a Scooby about any of my kit 's input or output impedances but the system certainly isn’t lacking in dynamics :smiley:

See whether you find that the quality changes with level. Played quietly ie attenuating a lot they can be prone to ringing which doesn’t manifest itself so noticeably when played loud ie not attenuating (transforming) so much. In my experience, auto formers have been more successful but even then I think they need careful buffering fore & aft.

I bought it on a whim but I stayed with my more expensive gear. You can have a loan if you want, no pressure.

1 Like

Thanks for the offer but I don’t even have a system set up currently. My life isn’t brilliant right now and I need to sort some stuff out before getting back into this. I’d just buy it to try if I was sorted but don’t have the system or the money right now.

Definitely an interesting piece of kit though.