The best tube preamp on the market below $5,000
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DOGE 8 Clarity (2017 Edition)

5.00 out of 5 based on 1 customer rating
(0 customer reviews)

DOGE 8 Clarity is our newest and most achieved version of Doge 8. It is a pure tube preamp with a built-in 100% tube phono stage. It has 5 Line inputs and one phono input.

Description

Every 3 to 4 years we try to do slight improvement to our preamp DOGE 8 The “DOGE 8 LP” was replacing the DOGE 8 in early 2014 and this year the DOGE8 CLARITY is replacing the DOGE 8 LP. All previous versions are discontinued. 

The Doge 8 is a great preamp so we would be foolish to revolutionize it. In the newest version we tried to do two things mainly required by our customers : to get higher range coupling capacitors and bring back the dual MM-MC phono inputs. The second request was not too difficult to achieve. We spent some time and we now offer again a MM and MC with two gain choice, low sensitivity MC and high sensitivity MC.

The first request was more difficult. We lacked of space on the PCB so getting to higher range of coupling caps meant to use bigger caps (even legends say size does not matter….).

One part of Doge 8 LP PCB was used for the balanced outputs. Indeed, the Doge 8 schematics is unbalanced. In order to offer XLR (balanced output) we have to balanced the schematics before signal go to XLR jacks. To do this we were using some solid state chips. We finally realized that : 1) very very limited number of Doge 8’s owners we using XLR outputs (around 2%), and 2) these XLR outputs were some kind of hybrid output and many email discussions shown our customer were not fully aware of this. We thought that Doge 8 XLR outputs sound performance was slighly lower than RCA outputs sound performance.  3) the little section on PCB with OP chips, and voltage regulation were taking space that could be used to increase coupling capacitors space on PCB.

Finally, after reflexion, we thought that XLR outputs were useless and the demand of higher range of coupling capacitors was bigger than the demand of XLR outputs. SO, DOGE 8 CLARITY has not anymore XLR output and this is not to do savings of course, because the cost of the new models of couplings capacitors is significantly higher than the cost of XRL removal.

Here are the key differences. We chose as newest coupling capacitors the UK ClarityCaps ESA models that were on our opinion the best choice to go higher in range, but keeping price increase reasonable. As a matter of fact, DOGE 8 CLARITY is $1,479 including delivery to your front door, instead $1,429 for DOGE 8 LP.

The name Clarity is in reference to ClarityCaps brand, but also because this nickname reflect well Doge 8 quality with lot of transparency and neutrality.

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Chassis height, length and width is the same as Doge 8 LP and overall appearance is the same. The silk printing of course is “DOGE 8 CLARITY”.

Our photograph will make studio shoot soon.

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There are many testimonies in forums and blogs reporting that it is the best preamp in the world at this range of price. We won’t make it our own statements as we didn’t listened all other preamp in the world, but we are proud of these feedback. We also got customers feedback that it has no competitors below $5,000.

Salvator Arthur, an independent reviewer managing the website high-endaudio.com has listed our Doge 8 in his favorites preamplifiers.

One of our customers recently compared our Doge 8 LP to an Audio Research LS27 he owned. Finally after having compared the sound performance with the Doge 8 of a friend has been so impressed by our Doge 8 LP, he finally decided to sell his LS27 and to buy our Doge 8 LP.

In addition to offer a fabulous sound performance, it also includes a high-end full tubes Phono built-in stage that can compare to stand-alone Phono preamps around the same price.

This preamp is incredibly neutral and transparent, all what you expect from a preamp. You will be delighted by the silky sound of Doge 8 LP. It has this little warmth you can expected from a tube device, but not an exaggerated warmth compared to other tube preamps. So half of our clientele are solid state power amps owner would like this little transparency and subtlety

The schematics of Doge 8 LP is at the same time simple and sophisticated. It allows perfect matching with all power amps as it has a sophisticated buffer impedance stage, driven by a current generator. In addition it has a low impedance output which is also a guaranty of good matching with power amps.

The Doge 8 LP uses 2 transformers and a choke (a choke is a power supply filtering device which has the same appearance as a transformer.
One transformer is for main power and the second one is for stand-by mode and digital functions of the remote controller in order to separate digital from analog.

All components are either imported brand or Chinese high end brands. The electrolytic capacitors are Japanese Nippon Chemicon, while film capacitors are french SCR and for the most sensitive ones, where signal goes through, we use the UK ClarityCaps, model ESA.

The chassis is particularly stiff and luxury due to the use of 6mm thick aluminum for all panels.
The front panel is made of brush anodized aluminum in black color.

The Doge 8 LP has an output socket designed for a proprietary cable to connect the Doge 8 LP with the Doge 9 PAB mono-blocks. It allows the Doge 8 to turn-on automatically the Doge 9 if you use them as a whole set.

> Read here the review in the Hifi blog Stereomojo.com (please note that the price listed in this article was in 2007 and Chinese Yuan currency got 20% stronger versus USD since that time).

PRICE POLICY

> Estimated retail price in shops : $1,990 (excluding VAT)

> Factory-direct price : from $1,479 (Australia, Canada, UE, USA) including delivery to your front door, Paypal or CC fees and two years warranty served in your country.

RIGHT NOW THE CHINESE YUAN IS LOW VERSUS USD, SO WE CAN GO BELOW THESE PRICES. Please mail.

VACUUM TUBES UPGRADE OPTIONS :

All our Doge 8 are supplied with tubes printed with a Doge logo. They are first grade Shuguang origin with Doge additionnal QC.

However since many customer asked some upgrade choices, we now offer these ones :

  • Optional Psvane 12AT7-T grade A for line stage : $110
  • Optional Psvane 12AX7-T grade A for Phono stage : $118

Please note that for safety reason according international air freight regulations, remote controllers are supplied without batteries. They use traditional AA type.

  • Tubes components : 12AT7 x 4 for line stage, 12AX7 x 4 for Phono stage
  • RCA Line inputs : 5
  • RCA Phono inputs : 1 MM cartridges compliant
  • RCA Output : 2
  • XLR ouput: 1
  • Remote controller : yes
  • Stand-by function : yes
  • Remote controller material : Luxury black aluminium
  • Bandwidth :12Hz to 30KHz
  • Line S/N ratio :>100dB
  • Phono S/N ratio :73dB
  • Line THD :0.05%
  • Phono THD :0.1%
  • Input impedance : 50K ohms
  • Line input sensibility : 200mV
  • Phono input sensitivity 3mV
  • <Max output voltage :10V
  • Output impedance : 600 ohms
  • Size in inches : W:17″ x D:14.5″ x H:5.1/4″
  • Weight in mm :W:44cm x D:36cm x H:11cm
  • Weight in KG :16kg + packing
  • Voltage :depending your country :120V, 220V, 230V, 240V. 100V on special order
  • Warranty :2 years on electronic, 3 months for vacuum tubes

Reviews

  1. 5 out of 5

    I’ve now put just over 200 hours on this preamp and it is excellent! I, obviously, haven’t’ heard every preamp under $5,000 but I have owned/heard a lot of preamps. I have no reason to doubt no other preamp in this price range is even in the same league. A++

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