This is the new line level pre-amp from Tube Distinctions, aptly named the ‘Soul-Mate’, as it was originally designed specifically to compliment the existing Soul Series power amplifier range. Like the amplifiers, it is quite unique in design and it’s the first pre-amp to incorporate the new two stage ‘Hyper Regulators’ that are unique to the Soul Series products.This now means at last there is no need for the use of cheap, mass produced, off the shelf regulators in any of the gain stage circuitry of the ‘Soul-Mate’ what so ever…
The design criteria for the ideal preamp is as i am sure you will agree a very important one, here are just a few of the atributes the soul-mate has to offer:
Shortest signal path posible, directly coupled, with perfect channel balance at all usable frequencies, the ability to place the all important power supplies [including large low noise twin transformers] and regulation devices as close as posible to the circuitry they are supplying, Ultra-wide frequency response, low output impedence to ensure correct amplifier drive capability at all frequencies and loads, exceptionally low distortion figures and noise…
ONLY with carefull design and layout, and the use of modern component technology is the soul-mate with all its exceptional atributes idealy and able to be contained in one neat unit, with no need to house the power supplies in an aditional box for what ever reason…
The signal path is ‘directly coupled through out’ and uses high power FET’s, the silicon world’s closest offering to the vacuum tube in terms of operation…
At the heart of the power supplies, buried in the lower chassis of the preamp is a pair of 100va low noise transformers, one for each channel! there is also an aditional single low noise transformer fitted in the same housing to supply the remote control board and ilumination.
As stated The Soul-Mate is one of the rare preamps that uses totally direct coupling, hence the circuitry features a soft start which eliminates pops and bangs on first turn on. Also, each Soul-Mate incorporates constant DC correction circuitry to cancel out any un-desireable DC element appearing at the output at any volume level. All these exceptional features combined contribute to a pre-amp that is not only very linear, and quiet, but also a joy to listen to.
Details and specifications:
• Up to five inputs, all line level.
• Two outputs per channel makes it simple for bi-amping.
• Fully dual mono circuitry, including power supply and transformers.
• Dact switched attenuators, with remote control option.
• 120v and 240v options.
• Casework; solid black, or semi-translucent red, or blue, acrylic.
Since the Soul-Mate was first introduced in 2004 it has been continually evolving and although in its original form its performance was classed as “staggeringly good”, in the later versions there are areas of the signal circuitry that have further been upgraded to squeeze out even more of the unique attributes that customers who already own the Soul-Mate are accustomed to. Please inquire for further info, quoting the serial number of your unit and the dealer that originally supplied it.
What the customers are saying…
Just a few of the emails and comments i have received about the new Soul-Mate preamplifier…
by copy of this memo I am sharing my initial subject impressions with my best customers, many of which already own the Soul amp. I now have 24 hours of break-in and can categorically state the Soul mate is already the best pre-amp I have ever heard — and by a significant margin.
In the words of your countrymen — I am gob smacked! This preamp redefines musical expression and emotional involvement, I find myself totally immersed in the music in a way heretofore I would not of believed possible. The sonority of instruments, the body, texture and air this preamp allows to come thru is revelatory. Dynamic expression at both ends of the scale is effortless and powerful. Image solidity, sound staging, transparency and the natural placement of instruments upon the sound stage is as good as I have ever heard and better than anything I have ever achieved in my reference system. The top end is the one area that I believe will improve the most with break-in. At present it is not as airy and ethereal as I have achieved in my room.
To my customers:
I know this ‘mini review’ sounds like I have “been in my cups” a wee bit too long this evening. Your judgments will be forthcoming in your systems but I will stake my reputation on the excellence of this product. As good as the Tom Evans Vibe + Pulse is the Soul mate is clearly and substantially better in every way but one at this juncture of break-in.
Tony, my opening order will follow this e-mail. Congratulations!”Rick Brown - Hi Fi One
“Hello Mr. Matthews,
I want to tell you my appreciation for your work, specifically the Soul 15W amp and Soul Mate preamp that together form the backbone of my system. A month has passed since I took delivery of the Soul Mate. It has just gotten better and better. Last night I was listening to Glenn Gould’s
Beethoven piano concertos. The speed, power, depth, emotion of the music was amazing. It was fluid, liquid, and geologic in its mass and seriousness.
There was warmth, just like the blood and sweat and tears of being human. It conveyed the risk it takes to conceive and to execute at that level of artistry. Your electronics rock. Well done.
Sincerely, David Terry”Mr D Terry
“Several weeks ago, Rick Brown graciously sent me a Soul Mate for evaluation.
To make a long story short: I bought it and love it.
To make a short story a bit longer: In comparing Soul Mate with Vibe/Pulse: both are extremely quiet, extremely neutral (i.e., uncolored) line stages. The Soul Mate has a deeper, more tuneful bass, and a more extended, delicate high end.
But, what captivated me about Soul Mate (and, in American-ese, what “made the sale”) were two characteristics that I continue to marvel at: First, Soul Mate provides the ebb and flow of the music that Vibe/Pulse miss. The Vibe/Pulse, to be sure, provides all the notes, but Soul Mate provides a more convincing illusion of the real thing. This has something to do, I think, with the Soul Mate’s ability to communicate very subtle changes in dynamics. But I was/am most impressed with the ability of Soul Mate to reproduce all the instruments and voices all the time, with the same level of detail and delicacy. In contrast, the Vibe/Pulse, in spotlighting whatever the lead instrument/voice happens to be at any given time, somehow loses the ability to present the detail and delicacy of the other instruments/voices. This detail and delicacy returns when that instrument/voice are spotlighted again, but not until then. Time and time again, I went back and forth between these two excellent line stages, thinking that the Vibe/Pulse had lost those background instruments/voices. Time and time again, I found that it hadn’t “lost” that background instrument/voice, but in losing that delicacy/detail, it had lost something musical about it that Soul Mate laid out before me.
So, well done (again), Tony! And thanks.”Professor L Schwartz
I have now spent quite some time listening to the soul-mate and am very pleased. The key thing is the way transparency has been retained despite adding another item of equipment in the chain. This has not been the case with anything else I have listened to.
I have had the pleasure of having top of the range DCS gear in my system over the past few days, and any item in the reproduction chain which wasn’t absolutely transparent would be very apparent.
In short I am very pleased with the soul-mate, so am confirming that I want to go ahead and purchase.
Can you confirm the price and how you wish me to make payment.
Very many thanks for letting me listen to the preamp over the last few weeks.
S. Brocklebank ”Mr S Brocklebank