Lehmann Black Cube SE Phono Preamp
Black Cube SE: Cult Object With PowerSince 1995, the Black Cube has gained the reputation of being the most cost-effective phonostage on the market, and has been overwhelmingly acclaimed by the international press. The Black Cube SE takes what is already great to a whole new level, and provides an excellent entry into high-end audio. It has the same features as the Black Cube, but the PWX power supply is added to the package. The PWX features a 30W toroidal transformer; the main reason for the significant upgrade in sonic performance. This PWX sports a grounded isolation coil between the primary and secondary coil, resulting in much more bass authority, a more fluid midrange, as well as more openness. The price per performance ratio is why more and more analogue lovers choose the Black Cube SE right from the start.
The device was vastly improved in 2006. A special 30 VA toroidal transformer of the PWX power supply is the main reason for the sonic performance achieved with the Black Cube SE. This transformer is not only overdimensioned but also sports a grounded isolation coil between the primary and secondary coil. The results: much more bass authority, a more liquid midrange as well as more openness. These sonic benefits are without a doubt the reasons that more and more music lovers choose the Black Cube SE right from the start.
No More Need for Expensive Impedance PlugsThe Lehmannaudio Black Cube SE phono stage is compatible with practically all available cartridges on the market from High Output MM to MC. Apart from the standard switch settings there is one onboard slot plus one hard wire slot that can be fitted with a custom impedances to supply perfect termination even for the most exotic cartridges. No more need for expensive impedance plugs!
The input stages used in the Black Cube SE can also be found in top notch mixing consoles or in well known professional microphone preamps. The entirely passive RIAA equalization network is realized with high precision foil capacitors. All resistors are of the low noise metal film variety. The switches for gain and load settings have gold plated connectors. Because of the small outer dimensions the Black Cube SE can be placed next to the turntable. This minimizes loss due to cable lengths.
Lehmannaudio always pays special attention to details: the cable between power supply and audio section is shielded and uses Neutrik connectors with gold plated contacts at the power supply side. The cases of both the power supply and the audio section are made of nonmagnetic material (aluminium) and are equipped with a top cover coated with a special anti-resonance treatment.
Ratings & Reviews
Has listened to few brands of phonostages and personally feel that this black cube se pump out lots of clean, clear details and tight deep bass throughout the dl-110 and 10watter oto se that's make the music so smooth and enjoyable with high volume without tiring your ears.
If you want lightning fast transients, great dynamics, extended frequencies look no further. Can make vinyl sound like a CD in terms of cleanliness and attack. If you want warmth to an already warm medium look elsewhere, but to me this is a superb phono stage well worth the asking.
This is not only about the most expensive purchase I've ever made (aside from a car), but hands down also the most worthwhile. Compared to a typical stereo's phono input, this is superb. Crystal clear. Effectively ZERO hum or radio interference at max volume. I've had the SE for over 6 years now, plugged in 24/7, and it delivers absolute perfection every time. My stylus is a (somewhat pedestrian by audiophile standards) Ortofon Nightclub E and the pairing is, again, absolute perfection. And... You can switch impedances to work with pretty much any stylus right down to the ceramics used in old BSR-style changers (for that retro response). No regrets whatsoever with this pre-amp.
This is a terrific phono amp for the money. I had read a couple of reviews that said the SE wasn't worth the extra money. My experience was definitely the opposite. Side by side listening showed the SE to definitely have a better sound than the regular Black Cube. Great product for the price.