Gold Note’s new PH-1000 phono stage combines a digital interface with a Class-A discrete component design, and claims to offer “the widest range of equalisations, gain, load and capacitance adjustments to correctly match any cartridge ever developed”. It has 18 EQ curves available for stereo, mono and 78rpm records and allows EQ adjustment to “virtually recreate any EQ curve ever used to press a record”.
It also boasts a headphone output with dedicated volume control, 3 independent inputs (RCA and XLR), and a single control that allows you to navigate the menu on the display to change settings while playing music. There’s also the option of external loading, stereo/mono control, phase inversion, L/R channel swap and a subsonic rumble filter.
The whole design is in apparently based on a very simple idea: to control analogue components through a digital interface and get rid of dip-switches, external boards and other less practical solutions. The other simple idea that emerges is that the audio signal path is always as short as possible to preserve the highest audio quality. The same idea that inspired the addition of the headphone output, which makes it possible to create the shortest audio chain ever, going from the cartridge to your ears in only 4 steps. Or the Class-A line preamp that allows the PH-1000 to be connected straight to your power amp.
The phono stage features 12 load options (from 10Ω to 100KΩ), 14 gain levels (from 31dB to 74dB) and 7 options to adjust the capacitance (from off to 1000pF). There are 3 RCA and 2 XLR inputs which can also be used for external load plugs, and a dedicated connector for the external power supply. This phono preamp is available in two models – PH-1000 (€9.600) and PH-1000 LINE (€13.500), with the LINE model featuring the Class-A line preamp stage.