Locked inside the grooves of every vinyl record is the most realistic, most natural, most moving sound one could ever experience. The trick is getting that sound off the record and into your speakers. Dan D’Agostino always found this task challenging … yet irresistible. He knew that no matter how much care he took in the design of his phono preamps, there was always more soul lurking within those grooves. With the Momentum Phonostage, he has finally extracted every last bit of music hidden in even the most microscopic fluctuations in the finest vinyl records.
How did Dan do it? By combining the finest possible analog circuitry with the precision of digital control. Every adjustment is right there on the front panel of the Momentum Phonostage, with its own LED readout. You can reach them easily, without opening up the component, without having to go into onscreen menus, and without having to fuss with DIP switches or analog controls. They practically beg you to experiment! Pushbuttons on the front precisely control gain, resistive loading for the two MC inputs, resistive and capacitive loading for the MM input, and record EQ curve.
Knowing that even the best circuitry is no better than the electricity that powers it, Dan gave the Momentum Phonostage what may well be the cleanest AC power supply ever created for a phono preamp. The Phonostage uses not one, but two separate power supply components: a transformer that sits on the floor, and power rectification and regulation circuits built into the base on which the Phonostage sits. Thus, the sensitive phono preamp circuits are double-isolated from the transformer electrically, and also separated by a safe physical distance.
As an audiophile, Dan likes to follow his muse, changing and expanding his system in whatever way the music demands. He can’t stand it when an audio component imposes limitations on his ideas, and that’s why he gave the Momentum Phonostage enough inputs to handle multiple tonearms and even turntables. It has two moving-coil inputs and two moving-magnet inputs, each with XLR and RCA jacks, plus XLR and RCA outputs.
The Momentum Phonostage uses the best parts available (and Dan’s tried most of them), and employs through-hole construction for maximum possible sound quality and reliability. And as with all the other products from Dan D’Agostino Master Audio Systems, each Momentum Phonostage is built by hand in Dan’s Arizona factory, literally within a dozen footsteps of Dan’s desk.
|Inputs||4 pr inputs via XLR and RCA
2 MOVING COIL Inputs
2 MOVING MAGNET Inputs
Inputs are selectable from the front panel
|Outputs||1 pr Balanced outputs via XLR|
|Gain||70 dB for MOVING COIL
50dB for MOVING MAGNET
|Input Clipping||1Khz typical for 70cM/sec recorded velocity,
gain trim at “0”
Equivalent input noise, 20 to 20 kHz < 60nV
Equivalent input noise current None
Gain adjustment is +/- 6dB and is selectable from the front panel.
|Equalization Curves||There are five selectable equalization curves available from the front
panel. These include the Standard RIAA equalization curves and 4
alternatives used by various record labels. The available curves are:
Represents the above curves +/- .2 dB from 20 Hz to 20 kHz.
|Loads||16 selectable resistive loads for MOVING COIL and MOVINg MAGNET
16 selectable capacitive loads for MOVING MAGNET inputs
|Power Supply||The base of the phono stage houses critical power supply
rectificaition circuitry while a third chassis houses the power
transformer for maximum isolation from AC-generated
Main: 15.5 x 12.75 x 3 1/2
Power Supply: 13.5 x 11 x 2.5
Total Height: 7
Transformer Box: 4 x 10.5 x 2
“When I reviewed D’Agostino’s Momentum line preamplifier in the August 2014 issue, I said that it had “delicacy, transparency, three-dimensionality, and especially liquidity and freedom from grain without softening transients-all floating above the blackest backdrops.” All of this was also true of the Momentum Phonostage … the most enticing solid-state phono preamp I’ve reviewed” — Michael Fremer, Stereophile