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Holiday 2018 > Recommended Reference Components > Esoteric - E-02 Balanced MM/MC Phono Preamplifier
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ESOTERIC - E-02 Balanced MM/MC Phono Preamplifier

Phono Preamps

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Item: AESOTE02
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Fully Balanced Dual-Mono Boards and Dual-Mono Power Supply Fuel Esoteric's Premium MM/MC Phono Preamplifier: E-02 Features Nine Impedance Positions, Plays Vinyl with Heaven-Sent Fidelity

Your cartridges will fall in love with the Esoteric E-02 MM/MC phono preamplifier. As for your ears? Say hello to heaven. This Japan-built analog instrument epitomizes uncompromising quality and audiophile prestige. Fully balanced from the input stage all the way to the final output stage, E-02 features dual-mono construction, exceptionally dynamic MC head and RIAA amplifiers, proprietary current-enhancing buffer circuits, and nine impedance positions. A demagnetization switch, subsonic filter, and mono switch give you even more nonpareil options for hearing every LP in your collection in exemplary sound. This is high-end analog as you've always dreamed it. 100% Music Direct Guaranteed.

“The E-02 simply sounds like the recording and the rest of your system. The execution and build quality are exemplary.”
The Absolute Sound, Editors’ Choice Award

Fully Balanced Circuit Design and Dual-Mono Construction
E-02 features fully balanced circuits from the input stage right through to the final output stage. It is designed for handling the extremely low-level signals from a MC cartridge, minimizing noise interference, and powerfully amplifying signals to bring the very best sound out of cartridges. Identical power supply transformers, power boards, and amplifier circuits are mounted independently on each channel. Outstanding channel separation and robust power-supply components deliver solid, powerful, and exceptionally high-quality playback.

Premium MC Head Amplifier and RIAA Amplifier
E-02 has a newly designed fully balanced MC head amplifier and RIAA amplifier. The NF-CR type RIAA amplifier achieves outstanding RIAA characteristics of ±0.2dB together with minimum Negative Feedback, and the high-voltage power supply delivers exceptionally wide dynamic headroom.

Demagnetization, Subsonic, and Mono Filter Functions
Play a record for around 30 seconds with the DEMAG function switched on to demagnetize any unexpected magnetization of the cartridge's coils or step-up transformers, and recover the original sound. E-02 is also equipped with a subsonic filter (17Hz, -6dB/octave) a Mono switch, and output switching (XLR, RCA, ES-LINK Analog) controls.

Highly Rigid Chassis Construction
Phono preamplifiers that amplify extremely low-signal levels are highly sensitive to vibration, which is why E-02 touts chassis construction to control vibration wherever possible. Each component is designed in minute detail, with slit construction used in the bottom chassis that supports all of the circuits. The highly rigid aluminum enclosure and proprietary pinpoint feet prove extremely effective in minimizing the effects of vibration.

ESOTERIC-HCLD: Proprietary Current-Enhancing Output Buffer Circuit
E-02 employs the same buffer amplifier technology as found in Esoteric's flagship Grandioso C1 preamplifier, which features a high-current output capability and exceptionally high slew rate of 2,000V/μs. Each channel is equipped with two buffer amplifiers that separately drive the hot and cold signals when the system is in XLR output mode. When switched to RCA output mode, the amplifiers work in parallel to maximize the output linearity. This design achieves super-fast current output, resulting in breathtaking sound.

ES-LINK Analog Output
E-02 is compatible with Esoteric's unique ES-LINK Analog current transmission in addition to regular XLR and RCA outputs. ES-LINK Analog is a current transmission method that fully utilizes the high speed and powerful capabilities of the HCLD circuit to maximize the potential of compatible devices.

Three Types of Input Options and Load-Impedance Switching Function
E-02 comes equipped with one XLR (MC dedicated) input and two RCA inputs, with the RCA inputs also featuring fully balanced transmission throughout all stages after the input amplifier. Cartridge impedance, filter on/off, and Mono switch on/off settings can be configured as presets for each input and switched easily using the large dial control on the front panel. E-02's load impedance switching function exploits the full potential of the cartridge, enabling you to select between nine different impedance positions (MC: 10Ω, 50Ω, 100Ω, 200Ω, 300Ω, 500Ω, 1kΩ, 10kΩ; MM: 47kΩ).

High-Grade Components Employed Throughout
Esoteric uses nothing but the highest-grade components, including custom-designed power-supply capacitors and machined, gold-plated RCA terminals. The two large, aluminum selector knobs on the front panel feature a ball-bearing structure based on the VRDS drive mechanism, providing a beautifully smooth analog feel without wobble.

   XLR connectors: 1 pair (MC)
   RCA connectors: 2 pairs (MC/MM)
Input impedance:
   MC: 10,50,100,200,300,500,1k,10kΩ
   MM: 47kΩ
   XLR/ES-LINK Analog Connectors: 1 pair
   RCA Connectors: 1 pair
Output impedance:
   XLR: 20Ω
   RCA: 23.5Ω
RIAA deviation (10 to 20kHz): ±0.2dB
Total harmonic distortion (1kHz, MM, rated output): 0.007%
Rated output level: RCA: 2Vrms
XLR: 4Vrms
Gain: RCA: MM 40dB, MC 66dB
XLR: MM 46dB, MC 72dB
Input sensitivity (1kHz, rated output): MM 20mV, MC 1mV
Maximum input level (at 0.1% distortion): MM 100mV, MC 4.8mV
S/N ratio (Input short, rated output, IHF-A): MM 100dB, MC 80dB
Channel separation (MM, 10kHz, IHF-A): <-96dB
Sub-sonic filter: 17Hz -6dB/octave
Power supply:
   AC 220-240V, 50/60Hz
   AC 120V, 60Hz
   AC 220V, 60Hz
Dimensions (WHD): 17 5/8" x 5 1/4" x 14 1/4"
Weight: 27.6 lbs.
Included accessories:
   Power cord x 1
   Felt pads x 3
   Owner's manual x 1
   Warranty card x 1

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