Used at Apoxna 2013.
I thought the BC 307 preamp with L3 power supply was one of the coolest things I have ever seen in audio. It is a multi-hybrid preamp. I'm using the word "multi-hybrid" because you have a choice of either listening to it in one of four configurations: 1) solid state, 2) with a 6922 tube, 3) with a 6SN7 tube, or 4) any combination of the three-- it's four preamps in one. Some time ago, I had a 6SN7 preamp. While I did experiment with tube rolling at the time, I did find it a bit too smooth for my taste. However, on certain types of music, it sounded great. I currently have a BC preamp which uses 6922 tubes. I have had the preamp for 9+ years-- and absolutely love it. I am using the EH6922 stock tubes. To my ears, it is much cleaner than the 6SN7, but just as good on music emphasizing vocals in folk or jazz music. When I heard my show disc with the BC 307, in full solid state mode, my jaws dropped and my heart raced. It was fast, clean, VERY musical, and without any sort of harshness typically associated with some solid state gear. I listened most of the weekend, and was simply amazed by it. Come Sunday afternoon, I had zero listening fatigue. I was giddy, and must have been smiling like an idiot. The music I brought was Top 40 pop. I played around with the different preamp configurations, but it was clear that I definitely favored solid state for my disc. Gilbert then played some of his music, setting the preamp to a combination of tubes and solid state. Listening to his music and switching back to solid state, I preferred his combination of both tubes and the solid state. The tubes added a smoothness that I loved on certain music. There is knob for each tube and one for solid state. If you wanted full solid state, for example, you turned it completely one way, while turning both tube knobs to the opposite direction; 100% solid state, 0% for each tube. While I don't know the specs on the L3 power supply, I do know that if your funds are short, one can start with an L1 power supply and build up at a future time-- like all BC gear. I am guessing that you could also get a bare bones preamp (as long as it's upgradeable), and in the future build up to the BC 307 with power supply level XXX-XXX-XX. (As Gilbert often says, "The sky's the limit.") This option of adding solid state to your tube amp or vice versa, with either one or both tube types, is likely possible for one's BC preamp. Checking with Walt at TLP Audio or your local dealer will ensure your answer. I think I can say, for all BC owners, that we just LOVE this flexibility and customization. For me personally, I was sold on the solid state. I have put in an order to upgrade my preamp with the solid state module. I'll have the ability to listen to my preamp with either all tube (6922), all solid state, or any combination of the two.
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