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In Reply to: RE: Audio Research LS-28 line pre. Just how much better? posted by audioman on April 16, 2017 at 10:29:58
The LS-27 was in production for 7 years that is quite a long time. ARC products typically have a 5-7 year life cycle. About right IMO.
The latest crop of ARC products are a big step forward from the previous generation that they replaced. This in not hyperbole they have made major improvements in every aspect of the designs, circuits, power supplies, parts, chassis and of course cosmetics. Livio Cucuzza has done amazing work with the ARC aesthetic. I own a Reference Phono 3 and consider it the best looking piece of equipment ARC has ever produced.
The LS-27 is a stunning performer but the LS-28 is better in every regard. It really shines over the LS-27 in areas of bass impact and grip, overall resolution. But the biggest improvement is the increased sense of timing, the togetherness of everything, it simply sounds more integrated and pulled together versus the LS-27. The LS-27 sounds confused by comparison.
Edits: 04/16/17Follow Ups:
I thank you very much for this informative and thorough reply. It is obvious in your descriptions that indeed the LS28 is move forward in both aesthetics, yet more importantly, sound ! I sincerely appreciate your comments here and as I said, I tend to seek the advice of end users over reviewers. It's not that I do not trust reviews, it is simply I feel that the opinions of consumers, in my opinion, have found to be more honest. I am going to make a date with my dealer and find out for myself.
I have also had my eye on a Reference 75SE power amp as well which my dealer did tell me would work very well with my LS-27, but thats another story :> )
Again, thank you my friend
Glad to help.
The REF75SE is a killer amp perhaps the best small wattage amp ARC has ever produced. I have owned two first the original REF75 and the REF75SE since last fall. The difference between the two is not subtle. I encourage anyone that has the REF75 to upgrade to the REF75SE. The changes ARC made in the amp is far more than a switch to KT150 output tubes and new coupling caps. There are improvements in the power supply, input stage, and much more.
The REF75SE will be an excellent match with the LS-27. Depending on your speakers and the rest of your system it may be a better upgrade than the LS-28.
Sometimes new ARC products do turn out to be incremental improvements over what they replaced. The SE upgrades for the current amps and the new preamps, phono stages represent more than just incremental improvements they are a big step forward.
Yes my brother, I have also heard this from a number of dealers who carry the ARC brand. My dealer told me this as well, that the Reference 75SE amplifier has actually
interfered on the interest and potential sale of the 150 and G series amplifiers.
Although I do not have extensive experience with the ARC brand, it has a presentation that is "right for my taste" and their seems to be a level high of consistency from product-to-product. I think it would be a safe statement that the Audio Research products are very well respected throughout the industry on the whole.
Thank you again for your valued input, much appreciated
IME, the Ref5SE pre-amp is the best value, for your money.
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