Pass Labs XP-30 Stereo Preamplifier


Conclusions About the Pass Labs XP-30 Preamplifier

As with the Pass Labs XP-20, the new XP-30 is an extraordinary preamplifier. It is not what I would call "better" than the XP-20 (in terms of sound quality, not the additional features), but rather, "different". I think any audiophile would be delighted with having either one of them, but from my own point of view, I would pair the XP-20 with a tube power amplifier, and the XP-30 with a solid state power amplifier (like the Pass Labs X1000.5 monoblocks which I had on hand for review). A combination of solid state with tubes is what I prefer to have in all my testing labs, and if you have the chance to listen to such combinations at a dealer showroom, I think you might agree with me. In any case, the XP-30 is a killer product, and certainly approaches the theoretical zenith of high fidelity sound reproduction.