Product Summary:The Van Den Hul Grail SB Phono Preamplifier is a fully-balanced version of the Grail, with double the internal circuitry to completely isolate the left and right channel signals. The sound profile is the same as the Grail, but the balanced circuitry enables a higher level of performance, in the form of lower distortion and lower noise floor. This is Van Den Hul's all-out statement on world-class vinyl sound.... Click To Read More
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Van Den Hul – The Grail SB Balanced Phono Preamplifier
The Van Den Hul Grail SB Phono Preamplifier is a fully-balanced version of the Grail, with double the internal circuitry to completely isolate the left and right channel signals. The sound profile is the same as the Grail, but the balanced circuitry enables a higher level of performance, in the form of lower distortion and lower noise floor. This is Van Den Hul’s all-out statement on world-class vinyl sound.
The Grail SB makes a reference-level statement that when matched properly in a system cannot be surpassed. SB, for “Stereo Balanced” manifests itself in blacker backgrounds, from a lower noise floor. The Van Den Hul sound is Neutral with Lightning Fast Dynamics…in a sense, the opposite end of the spectrum from the Lamm.
“this is emotional transfer, pure, clean and not a trace of distortion or background noise is found.”
HiFi Music Gear
Rene’ Van Es
Note: Balanced operation requires cables with XLR/balanced connectors.
- a specific designed Phonograph preamplifier section, unique in the world
- Phonograph RIAA – equalization with coils only, no sound impairing capacitors in filters
- special printed circuit board material with gold conducting paths
- the printed circuit board has a special seating to evade microphonics
- special equipment foot made of selected wood avoids mechanical energy storage
- low noise moving coil input stage, no annoying noise even with low-output cartridges
- automatic adapting input stage for moving coil cartridges, no matching resistors needed
- possibility to compensate phonograph cartridge sensitivity (level adjustment)
- cut out of coupling capacitors in the signal path as far as possible
- strictly separated amplifier sections and circuit layout deliver a very natural soundstage
- Note: separate power supply not pictured
- three phonograph inputs, two for MC cartridges, one for MM or MC high-output
- a shielded transformer is placed in an external housing to avoid hum and EMI noise
- power supply with Gyrators for each amplifier stage deliver very high noise cancellation
- the external transformer is available for different mains voltages
Winner of the Positive Feedback Brustus Award!
“Like other perfectionist-quality phono preamps that have impressed MF, van den Hul’s The Grail is a current-amplification rather than voltage-amplification device, and thus is distinctly well suited to phono cartridges of very low impedance and inductance. (Note that vdH refers to this product not as a current amplifier but as an “automatic adapting input stage”; as we say in upstate New York, same difference . . . ) The Grail is a two-box design—one’s the preamp, the other the power supply—with separate RCA input jacks for MM and MC cartridges and one pair of single-ended RCA output jacks. A gain of 56, 64, or 73dB can be selected via DIP switches; loading jacks (also RCAs) are provided for those who wish to alter The Grail’s load characteristics by adding resistors or capacitors in parallel with the default load of 47k ohms, 50pF. According to MF, “The Grail produced spectacular results”—and not just with vdH’s own Colibri XGW Stradivarius Signature cartridge. That said, it was with that cartridge that The Grail impressed Mikey with “the ‘blackest’ backgrounds, out of which sprang startlingly delicate yet believably solid three-dimensional images.” (Vol.41 No.8)”
Mains Power: 115 or 230Volt, 50/60Hz
Power consumption: 7 Watts
Temperature operating range: from 15 up to 30deg. Celsius Use only in dry rooms
Max. undistorted output voltage: 25Vss
Output impedance: 330 Ohms (real resistive)
Input sensitivity values: for 250mV resp. 0,707Vss output level on amplifier output
Amplification factor 33dB: 5,6 mV
Amplification factor 41dB: 2,2 mV
Amplification factor 50dB: 0,8 mV
Input impedance: 47KOhm / 50pF
Amplification factor 56dB: 0,4 mV
Amplification factor 64dB: 0,15 mV
Amplification factor 73dB: 0,05 mV
Input impedance: autom. matching from appr. 40 up to 400 Ohms