BAT VK-P12 - All Tube Balanced Phono Preamp - Like New And Complete
Super clean and well cared for Balanced Audio Technology VK-P12 all tube phono preamp.
Impressive build quality, component selection, and design that's capable of getting the most performance from just about any phono cartridge.
Comes to you in its original box with the owner's manual and accessories.
• AT THE FOREFRONT OF ANALOG PLAYBACK TECHNOLOGY
Transparent, dynamic, warm, involving: The path to the ultimate in analog fidelity begins here. Equipped with fully balanced zero-feedback topology, this incredible instrument boasts high-quality input step-up transformers and a Six-Pak of custom oil-filled capacitors.
• MAMMOTH ENERGY RESERVES HANDLE ANY CARTRIDGE
Low-output moving-coil cartridges are a forte
of the VK-P12. Most are easily handled by the phonostage’s direct mode. And with energy reserves that exponentially exceed those found in competing products, this phonostage could be a sizeable power amplifier.
• SUPERLATIVE BUILD QUALITY, BREATHTAKING PERFORMANCE
VK-P12 is built to a spec that ensures it will be passed onto future generations. Experience it, and unlock the glory of vinyl music reproduction that few music lovers have ever imagined—let alone enjoyed.
Click below to add our recommended matching cables from Kimber Kable, all brand new as SkyFi is an official Kimber dealer.
Kimber Kable - XLR Interconnects
Kimber Kable - Phono Interconnects - Better
Kimber Kable - Flagship Tonearm Interconnects - Best
Kimber Kable - Base Series PK14 Power Cord
More from BAT - please see our photos for specifications:
BAT VK-P12 PHONOSTAGE
Dual-mono construction, balanced inputs, vacuum-tube current sources, enormous energy reserves, and a massive power supply push the VK-P12 to the forefront of the world’s finest phonostages. VK-P12 uses the same amorphous core output transformers employed throughout Balanced Audio Technology’s premier line of phonostages Complementing the unit’s all-tube zero-feedback design, a unique Flying RIAA circuit maximizes accuracy, brings the benefits of fully differential operation to the critical equalization stage, and delivers standard-bearing fidelity to the original recorded signal.
The VK-P12 is fully balanced from input to output. For the best possible performance, the phono cartridge should be used in a matching balanced configuration. Many turntables and tonearms allow for such a termination. In some cases, even if only RCA connectors are present on the arm, the cartridge can still be used in a balanced configuration by using a specially designed cable.
TEN-TUBE, ZERO-FEEDBACK DESIGN
The VK-P12 features an all-tube zero-feedback design that combines the benefits of balanced operation with complementary vacuum-tube current sources. Dual-mono construction and enormous energy reserves are matched by extensive flexibility in cartridge loading. Equipped with a new aluminum top cover, this incredible music instrument boasts high-quality input step- up transformers for greater flexibility in handling the lowest-output moving-coil cartridges as well as a Six-Pak of custom oil-filled capacitors in the output stage.
FLYING RIAA NETWORK
Among the benefits of the VK-P12’s differential RIAA network are ease of adjustment and improved common mode noise rejection. This circuit is also completely passive and has fewer components than a more traditional implementation. The ease of factory adjustment translates into improved matching of the RIAA curve to specification, with an RIAA error typically not exceeding 0.1dB! With the BAT Flying RIAA network, you can be assured that all of your records sound the way that the recording engineer intended.
VACUUM-TUBE CURRENT SOURCES
Vacuum-tube current sources further improve the linearity of any gain stage to yield a more open and textured sound than a simple resistor-based solution. In the VK-P12, dual 6SN7 vacuum tubes act as current sources for the second gain stage. They complement the inherent strength of vinyl playback in that the finest texture and harmonic structure of musical instruments are portrayed with greater delicacy.
SELECTABLE STEP-UP TRANSFORMERS
The VK-P12 features second-generation step-up transformers that provide as much as a 20dB improvement in signal-to-noise ratio in comparison to direct mode operation. This allows the customer to successfully use even the lowest output moving-coil cartridges. With up to 80dB of gain available, no signal is too small!
The whole of the engineering of the VK-P12 is greater than the sum of its parts. Such synergy will pay countless dividends on your investment in vinyl. And, of course, all VK-P12 phonostages can be further upgraded to VK-P12SE or VK-P12SE SuperPak status, maintaining the commitment to a rational upgrade path that has earned BAT tremendous customer loyalty.
BAT (Balanced Audio Technology) VK-P12 - Sales Brochure
BAT (Balanced Audio Technology) VK-P12 - Owners Manual
The SkyFi Testing Process for Preamplifiers (All):
We start with a visual inspection of all internal components to make sure there are no signs of stress or aging. Capacitors are checked for telltale sings of bulging or leaking, resistors are checked for signs of overheating or cracking, and transistors are checked for signs of stress or damage. Special attention is paid to the power supply which is the most common source of failure for preamps. We then power up the unit and run a simple 1k sine wave while monitoring the low voltage output on an oscilloscope for signs of distortion or noise to get a baseline.
At this point we will lubricate and clean all switches and potentiometers (that are not sealed) with a high quality contact cleaner, and then re-test all functions for any signs of noise or scratching.
Final testing involves putting actual music through the preamplifier We have learned over time that some issues are only noticeable to a trained ear while listening to a familiar source material. Our test bench has reference vintage KEF speakers that we are super familiar with which will quickly reveal any discrepancies. Some preamps will then move into the listening room where they will be tested with our in-house reference system.
The SkyFi Testing Process for Preamplifiers:
We start with a visual inspection of all internal components to make sure that there are no signs of heat stress or damage. Capacitors are checked for telltale signs of predictive failure including bulging, shrunken wrappers, or physical leakage. We also inspect the PCBs for discoloration from resistors or transistors that may have been running hot. On vintage units we often spot check select capacitors for value and ESR.
When we first power on a preamplifier we connect its RCA output to a Sencore PA81 Power Analyzer which simulates real world loading conditions and gives us an oscilloscope interface. The first order of business is checking that the volume control works smoothly throughout its entire range with acceptable channel balance. This is accomplished by feeding a 1KHz sine wave into one of the preamp’s line level inputs while monitoring the preamp’s output on an oscilloscope. We then switch to a 1KHz square wave to test the tone controls, loudness function, and filters where applicable. During this step we are watching for equal alteration of the test signal by both channels. This also helps us identify dirty controls that will need treatment. Once the basic line stage functions are verified, we test each input individually. This is especially important for devices that use relays to select their sources. If the preamp is equipped with a phono stage we test that as well. We use an inverse RIAA filter which allows us to feed a reference test signal into the phono input with the proper RIAA equalization and level. A square wave or sine sweep is used to verify that the device’s phono stage is faithfully reproducing the RIAA curve. If the preamp under test has balanced inputs and/or outputs these are tested as well.
We finish up our bench testing with a listening test with our bench amplifier and reference speakers. During this test we check for hum or hiss that may not have shown up in earlier testing. We also check that all of the tone controls and filters perform as expected. If the preamplifier has remote control functions these are also tested. Preamps with tube circuits or complicated power supply topologies are connected at our long term test rig for extended stress testing under real world conditions.
Yes - Power Only
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