This is LVAC member Dave's pick for Component of the Week.
Dave says: "This is really one Hell of a preamp. Packed with features (see the links below) and a complete array of digital inputs (including usb and optical out,) this is a preamp for the 21st century. I first saw and heard it at the 2011 CES and I was very impressed. Don't let the low price (in high end audio terms) fool you, this is truly a state of the art component. Word on the street is that it compares to preamps costing up to $4k, some say even $10k. Well, that may be a bit far fetched, however what is true is that this unit punches way above its weight class; it's user-friendly, built very well, and sounds superb. What's not to like? Well, some high-end nuts (I mean that in a good way,) will poo-poo the lack of balanced XLR inputs and outputs, the lack of adjustable phono loading, and too many bells and whistles for their tastes. For this price you can't have it all, and in my opinion, I think it's crazy to spend $3k or more on a preamp that just has balance control, input control, and volume control. Which is what the overwhelming majority of high end preamps are like! Anyway, I've got my eyes on this unit, and when the time comes, I am most likely going to buy one! I urge you to go and check this preamp out. You won't be sorry."
Price: $1699 USD