Please help ...

amplifiers, receivers and loudspeakers
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British Raj
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Please help ...

Post by British Raj » 03 Dec 2019 21:21

Firstly, I am not a techie when it comes to amps, pre-amps and speakers so please go easy!

Current Set-up
Rega Planar RP2 with an upgraded tone arm (looks like an RB330)
Arcam P77 Cart with Paratrace LowMass Diamond stylus that I invested in as an upgrade
A vintage NAD 3020E that has unfortunately styarted to hum a bit
B&O Beolab 8000 speakers

As I have concluded from a previous post on here, the integrated amplifier is actually not doing anything in terms of amplification because the Beolab 8000s are fed through an earphone jack on the NAD 3020E. there is no other way to output the sound from the amplifier to the speakers and still have tone and volume control.

This means, I am importing background noise from the amplifier into the system for no benefit. My thinking is that if I get a decent Headphone amp with volume and tone controls, I will get a better, cleaner sound from my set-up. Is this logical? Any recommendations for a headphone amplifier? I have been looking at the Cambridge Audio Duo Phono Headphone Preamp. Would it do the job?

georgesgiralt
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Re: Please help ...

Post by georgesgiralt » 05 Dec 2019 17:48

Hello,
If, like you say, the Beolab are amplified speakers, you just have to buy a decent phono preamp to fed them from the turntable.
It may not cure your hum problem (if it is not the Nad having a problem, but the turntable grounding or the Beolab amplifier inside the speakers) but I bet the Beolab input will be fine with it. Check needs for the beolab and choose the preamplifier according to this need.

fscl
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Re: Please help ...

Post by fscl » 05 Dec 2019 18:04

Check out this topic:

https://forum.beoworld.org/forums/p/23023/190449.aspx

Remove the U shaped jumpers from the Pre Out to Normal and connect the Pre-Out connectors on the rear of the NAD to the line (switch first) input of the 8000s as directed in the link above.

You will have full control over the volume and tone along with the NAD's headphone jack for use for personal listening as intended. Powered speakers can be turned off with the use of a power strip or smart plug...... :-k

Good luck

Fred

British Raj
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Re: Please help ...

Post by British Raj » 05 Dec 2019 19:07

Thanks! Will give the suggestions a go at the weekend and come back.

Ottermel
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Re: Please help ...

Post by Ottermel » 07 Dec 2019 03:24

He can't remove the jumpers that are not there, he has NAD 3020E which has no preamp-power amp separation!!

British Raj
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Re: Please help ...

Post by British Raj » 07 Dec 2019 10:22

That is correct. No separation on the NAD.

So, if I get a plain preamp, most don't have volume control.
If I get a headphone amp, most don't have tone control.
It I get an integrated amp, I am back to square one where the power amp will be sitting there doing nothing but adding noise.

I am stuck :D

JaS
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Re: Please help ...

Post by JaS » 07 Dec 2019 10:53

British Raj wrote:
07 Dec 2019 10:22
So, if I get a plain preamp, most don't have volume control.
Active speakers are designed to be used with a preamp which provides input switching and volume control. These are not to be confused with a phono preamp which usually just provides equalisation and fixed gain to allow connection of a turntable to a line level input.

There are lots of stereo preamps, many of which have built in phono stages.

Here are a selection by NAD:
https://www.hifiengine.com/database/hif ... e=NAD&mdl=

British Raj
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Re: Please help ...

Post by British Raj » 07 Dec 2019 14:46

Thanks, Jas. I am beginning to get the drift. Just for absolute clarity ... What I really need with my Beolab 8000s is a 'stereo preamp'. Not an integrated amp like the NAD3020E. Correct?

Ottermel
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Re: Please help ...

Post by Ottermel » 07 Dec 2019 15:01

Yes, you need a preamp, but, if you can get a phono preamp with a volume control and enough gain and if you plan on only playing records, then that could be a solution or, get another integrated amp with a possibility of separating amp and preamp and then you have other inputs for tuners or CD's (a receiver with this capability is also a consideration).
If you can find a used EAR 834P with a volume control, that would solve your dilemma!

pivot
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Re: Please help ...

Post by pivot » 07 Dec 2019 15:34

The "started to hum" statement about the NAD 3020E make me wonder if the power supply electrolytic caps are aging out . You might want to consider having a tech recap the power supply. Electrolytic caps are not "forever" and the NAD 3020E is getting long of tooth.

I sold the original 3020 back when it first came out. It's a classic. I was not aware, and am I surprised, the "e" variant did not offer the "pre-out/amp in" connectors with jumpers the original had.

British Raj
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Re: Please help ...

Post by British Raj » 07 Dec 2019 18:43

Thanks for the ongoing support, guys. I am learning!

Hi Pivot - As you can see in the back, there is no jumper. I have looked at rear panel images on some NAD 3020s and they do have a jumper but not my NAD 3020e.
https://i.imgur.com/YmU5blL.png

Appreciate the recapping suggestion but what has stopped me from going down that route is ... I didn't pay a lot for this amp so it was always meant to be just something to get the system going. If I get it fixed, it will still be a case of the power amp side idling away as they are never going to work the Beolabs. I might still do that because it is a beautiful piece of vintage ... and set it up in my kid's house or the man cave. And finally, I am happy to buy a more advanced piece of technology because I know the turntable set-up a lot better now - it is worth spending some money on.

pivot
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Re: Please help ...

Post by pivot » 07 Dec 2019 21:35

I did check that the 3020s did not have the jacks. Odd. NAD did make preamp that had 3020 circuit in it.

fscl
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Re: Please help ...

Post by fscl » 09 Dec 2019 16:05

Ottermel wrote:
07 Dec 2019 03:24
He can't remove the jumpers that are not there, he has NAD 3020E which has no preamp-power amp separation!!
#-o

Sorry, used the 3020 Owner's manual in HiFi Engine to formulate an answer, should have referred to the e schematics before answering. #-o #-o

Perhaps unit(s) like this could be used / inserted into the Tape Monitor circuit along with a few required adapters ...... :-k

https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail ... lsrc=aw.ds

https://www.amazon.com/Behringer-HA400- ... 68d1cdd790

No affiliation, used for illustration purposes only.

Good luck

Fred

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