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on 24 August 2008
There are lots of turntables available these days to convert your vinyl to MP3 or other digital music forms, but most of them look cheap and plasticky. I have a Dual CS505 from 1982, and it cost more back then than most of the modern computer interface types do today. So, why spend about £80 when you probably already have a sound card, audio manipulating software and a good turntable. Get this phono pre-amp for less than a tenner,and end up with better results!

The unit I received said "Commtel" rather than Eagle, but was otherwise identical to the photo. It takes a 9 volt power supply to run it, either a PP3 inserted in a compartment in the bottom, or an AC adaptor supplying 9 volts to a "centre terminal positive" plug. There's a small on-off switch on the back, to save battery life. So, what's the switch on the top for? Well, look at the back, and you'll see 3 pairs of phono sockets (gold plated in appearance!) One pair is the turntable in (Moving magnet cartridges, not moving coil!) and one pair the output to your amplifier (you can use it with any amplifier with line in sockets, as well as computers). The third pair are "line in" so, whatever you used to have plugged into the device you are now feeding this amp into can be plugged into this, and selected instead of the turntable input, using that big switch on top.

Ther's a ground terminal for turntables needing one (mine does) so it's all well thought out. The sound quality is excellent, I've already made a couple of CD's from 2 of my albums, and they sound very good. You can also load the newly digitized audio into your portable digital music device. One reason I didn't want an MP3 device was that I have a Sony WALKMAN, which has Sony's superior ATRAC file compression, rather than MP3 as used by iPod and the like, so this gives my control over how I handle the audio files, all it does is feed the sound at line level into my soundcard, what I do with it then is my choice, not the turntables.
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on 25 April 2012
I bought one of these, like many other people, to connect my turntable directly to my laptop for vinyl to CD transfer. This was so much easier than crawling about on the floor taking a feed from my system amplifier, and at a cost of £12.99 (when I bought it) it was worth every penny for the added convenience and pleasure that it brought to doing the job.

Even at this bargain price, there is nothing to criticise about the construction or operation of the device or the delivery service. Just one little niggle perhaps, as somebody mentioned, is the lack of an LED to remind you to switch it off at finishing time, but I wouldn't knock a star off just for that.

I won't be risking introducing hum by using a mains power unit. I've spent a lot of time familiarising myself with the excellent free download Audacity software, and transferred several LPs to disc and I'm still using the same PP3 battery I started with - and they were in a pack of two from the Poundshop!

Incidentally, these jobbies come with a variety of name labels on them, mine's an "Electrovision", so don't worry that you might have been sent the wrong one.

Buy one - you know it makes sense.
0Comment| 9 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 17 September 2008
I bought this to link my Pioneer record deck to my Home PC to copy my old vinyl records.
It works superbly. rating? 100%
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on 23 February 2012
Having read some of the previous reviews, I went ahead and purchased a Soundlab phono pre-amp - it also seems to come badged as Eagle, or Electrovision, like the one delivered to me. I am very pleased with its functionality and ease of use. I wanted to use an old belt drive hi-fi turntable with my Dell PC to play and digitise old LPs - and this does the job fine for £14 considering you can pay £100 plus for a hi-fi pre-amp. I did not feel the quality of many of my LPs and singles (rock and pop) merited a high-end pre-amp, and any limitations are not really noticeable.

One of your previous reviewers explained in helpful detail how to connect the pre-amp if you are not sure. This unit has AUX or PHONO switch with corresponding RCA phono sockets on the back to connect your turntable into (you use PHONO) - and then I bought a cheapy 2 phono plugs to 3.5mm jack plug lead to connect directly into the PC's soundcard at the back of the PC (may buy a better lead if I get serious). The pre-amp unit has an earth connection to avoid mains hum from the turntable - good feature - and runs off a 9v battery to avoid mains power issues (you switch unit off when not needed to save battery).

I was amazed when it played through the PC speakers first time and I also discovered I actually have all the software I need to digitise LP tracks already on the Dell PC. You probably do too! This works a treat after the usual learning curve.

Does the job, quality OK, easy to fit, good value - why not buy one? Hope this helps someone.
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on 17 December 2009
I was looking for a way to get an amplifier and speakers so I could use my vinyl turntable and also to digitise. The answer was simple, I bought the Commtel phono preamp at the knock-down price, coupled it to the turntable and my PURE Evoke TX2 DAB radio and away it went. Good sound and the PURE links to the PC. Naively, I forgot that the preamp would need a power supply but I used a PP3 battery until I got a mains powered one from Maplin. This has worked out to be a good way to convert from vinyl to digital without buying one of the many dedicated units. Incidentally, the Evoke TX2 is available at low cost just now and it is a decent DAB radio (only fault from my poit of view is too few presets).
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on 25 November 2010
Excellent piece of kit for the price, Sounds really good on A Shure 95ED moving magnet.
Not sensitive enough for moving coil types.
Needs A very quiet power supply (mains hum), Best on Battery.
You could pay A lot of money for A phono preamp that would not be as good as this one.
11 comment| 14 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 19 March 2012
This preamp completely trounced the two other preamps I purchased, one of them was from a major high street electronic retailer for £20 and the other had fancy gain, rumble filter and capacitance controls with clip and power LEDs - bought from an internet retailer for £45.

Both of the outgoing reject preamps were cased in metal but the sound they produced was weak and anemic compared to the Eagle Soundlab and it was the cheaper of the three.

Please don't be fooled by expensive looking boxes and tweakable controls that do absolutely nothing to enhance the sound, save your money and buy this great sounding preamp!
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on 28 October 2010
This product is not shipped with either a 9v adaptor or PP3 battery. Like most people, I have a collection of adaptors and managed to find one of correct voltage and pin size. It worked perfectly well for several months and then an annoying buzz started. Having spent over a day trying to eliminate earth feedback loops with mixed success and concluded that a new turntable with pre-amp fitted was called for, I did the obvious and tried a PP3 battery - instant success and no buzz.
I guess they do not supply an adaptor because not everybody wants one. I was worried that I would spend a fortune on batteries, but there is an on/off switch.
I would recommend using a battery which means siting the pre-amp where you can get at it so make sure you have long enough RCA leads to reach your amp.
Sound quality seems excellent with my old Dual & only gets 4 stars because of lack of instructions in the box or on-line.
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on 14 March 2015
Despite this unit claiming that it has RIAA eq for phono cartridges, the eq is not correct for phono use and is more akin to eq for a tape head.
The bass response is very roughly right, but the treble equalisation is completely incorrect. I bought the unit with the intention of modifying it if I needed to, so for me it was worth the small price. However, for normal users, this unit will be very disappointing.
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on 19 November 2009
After trying out a couple of other preamps with little success, I decided to give this a go and really wish I'd bought this first instead of wasting money on other preamps.

As other reviews have stated, this is great for hooking up to a PC to convert your vinyl collection but it's even better just listening to records with this connected to a hi-fi or amp. The sound quality is superb as the EQ is well balanced and the signal is strong and clear. It certainly helps to have a good quality amp but I got great sound running through a boom box aswell.

A great thing with this preamp is that you can connect your turntable's ground wire to it, cutting out horrible buzzing and hum.

Out of the few preamps I've bought, this is by far the cheapest and by far the best.
0Comment| 12 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

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