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REVIEW: Conrad-Johnson (CJ,C-J) ET3 - SE Preamplifier (Tube)

24.191.83.162

Posted on February 3, 2012 at 06:15:43
tamule
Audiophile

Posts: 73
Joined: December 5, 2009
Model: ET3 - SE
Category: Preamplifier (Tube)
Suggested Retail Price: 4000.00
Description: single 6922 tube / ss hybrid
Manufacturer URL: Conrad-Johnson (CJ,C-J)
Model Picture: View

Review by tamule on February 03, 2012 at 06:15:43
IP Address: 24.191.83.162
Add Your Review
for the ET3 - SE


After reading the rave reviews I took a 3hr ride to Spearit Sound in Mass. for audition. The CDs I brought were more enjoyable, less fatigueing compared to my solid-state Bryston BP-26. I was sold. My 1st impressions at home after ~6 hrs are terrific. Not missing any trait of the Bryston at all. The detail, impact still there plus realism, bigger stage, harmonically rich mids, more music meat on the bone. I think CJ hit it out of the park with this one- great value,gorgeous sound, no noise,no balanced circuits, and a managable single tube. Nice to be immersed in music again.


Product Weakness: some may prefer a heftier remote. I actually love this tiny,light plastic one.
Product Strengths: best of both worlds - tube/ss


Associated Equipment for this Review:

Amplifier: Bryston 3B-sst
Preamplifier (or None if Integrated): old Bryston bp-26
Sources (CDP/Turntable): Meridian G08.2 cdp
Speakers: DIY big 3-way design by Troels Graveson
Cables/Interconnects: AQ
Music Used (Genre/Selections): classic rock,jazz, classical
Room Size (LxWxH): 20' x 12' x 8'
Room Comments/Treatments: absorber panels
Time Period/Length of Audition: 2 days
Other (Power Conditioner etc.): PS Audio UPC-200 conditioner
Type of Audition/Review: Product Owner
Your System (if other than home audition): n/a


 

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RE: REVIEW: Conrad-Johnson (CJ,C-J) ET3 - SE Preamplifier (Tube), posted on February 3, 2012 at 10:34:57
LouGiants
Audiophile

Posts: 78
Location: Tampa bay
Joined: March 20, 2008
Hi Tamule -
The CJ is a higher gain pre-amp if I am not mistaken 25db. Any issues that you noticed as far as volume levels - precise?
Juest wondering with an Amp that has I think 28db of sensitivity.

Thanks!

 

RE: REVIEW: Conrad-Johnson (CJ,C-J) ET3 - SE Preamplifier (Tube), posted on February 3, 2012 at 11:03:11
tamule
Audiophile

Posts: 73
Joined: December 5, 2009
Yes Lou . I had to switch the gain setting on the back of the 3B-sst to 2V (-23 dB). The 1V {-29 dB) was too much even at the lowest possible volume of the ET3-SE. The volume goes from dead silent to step 1 with no in-between. I find step 1 volume and -23dB amp gain low enough for any condition.
regards, tom

 

RE: REVIEW: Conrad-Johnson (CJ,C-J) ET3 - SE Preamplifier (Tube), posted on February 3, 2012 at 14:59:27
AbeCollins
Audiophile

Posts: 22314
Location: USA
Joined: June 22, 2001
Contributor
  Since:
February 2, 2002
They gave you only one tube in that CJ linestage?! ;-)

Congrats. Now you have the best of both worlds, tube magic and solid-state muscle. I drive my Brystons with a tube linestage and couldn't be happier.

 

It's a hybrid, posted on February 3, 2012 at 15:05:32
E-Stat
Audiophile

Posts: 19919
Joined: May 12, 2000
Contributor
  Since:
April 5, 2002
with a MOSFET buffer stage.

ET3

 

Ditto, posted on February 3, 2012 at 16:16:54
unclestu
Dealer

Posts: 4829
Joined: April 13, 2010
uses an IRF 710 as the mosfet buffer, IIRC. Same mosfet used in their series pass voltage regulators.

Stu

 

RE: REVIEW: Conrad-Johnson (CJ,C-J) ET3 - SE Preamplifier (Tube), posted on February 3, 2012 at 20:44:37
tamule
Audiophile

Posts: 73
Joined: December 5, 2009
yes - somehow only 1 tube for the line stage does the trick. You get 3 more with a built in phono stage.

 

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