DJM Phono Preamps Testing
So I have a DJM-250MK2 with my Technics and as well as a DJM-750MK2 for my main digital setup. Having owned a A&H Xone 22, there were some quirks that didn't work for my mixing style and despite the sound quality of it (superb) it wasn't worth dealing with.
I always wanted to do this test regarding the phono pre-amps on the DJMs of the current generation to showcase the differences when using an external preamp. It's pretty day and night and you can tell there is this weird sheen that makes the low end muddy and the mids been tucked in a bit with the current preamps.Found a couple Art DJPREII phono preamps off eBay for super cheap, set everything to 0DB and used a brand new record to do my testing. Stylus cart is Ortofon Concorde Mix MKIIs. Everything was recorded via USB out of the the DJMs into Ableton.
DJM-250MK2 PHONO PREAMPhttps://www.dropbox.com/s/h653x9i6dm3f3up/DJM-250MK2%20PHONO%20PREAMP%200DB.wav?dl=0
DJM250MK2 X ART DJ PREII LINE INhttps://www.dropbox.com/s/fqhx1fri3h595g0/DJM-250MK2%20ARTDJPREII%200DB.wav?dl=0
DJM-750MK2 PHONO PREAMPhttps://www.dropbox.com/s/si6q98vhdlo4rkq/DJM-750MK2%20PHONO%20PREAMP%200DB.wav?dl=0
DJM-750MK2 X ART DJ PREII LINE INhttps://www.dropbox.com/s/el29q438k409gvj/DJM-750MK2%20ARTDJPREII%200DB.wav?dl=0
It's crazy that there is a difference in fidelity. With the internal preamps, it's as if the low end is heavily pushed and mids become muffled. With the external preamp, things get cleaner and you can hear more of the top end.
Here is the same recording with the DJM-S11 phono at 0DB, same settings as the others.
DJM-S11 x ART DJ PREII LINE IN
The S11 and the DJM-750MK2 practically sound identical with both the PHONO and using an external preamp via the LINE IN. Spec wise the S11 has A/D bitrate conversion at 32bit just like the 750MK2 so I wasn't surprised at that. I was more surprised at the fact the initial PHONO recording sounds pretty much exactly the same.
Sure, A&H all the way for vinyl if that's your go to and especially if you want the 23. For me? I didn't like my experience with the 22 and felt that would've been the same getting the 23. Was not a fan of the way it looks, the single filter knob, having to deal with opening it up, soldering the pads to increase the gain line for PHONO. But for those that want to stick with DJMs and use it with vinyl, I suggest getting an external preamp to get a better sound.
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