Is an autoformer (AVC) always superior to pots and resistors ?

This is an argument some of my friends made to me. AVC is always the best volume control, better than anything else such as rk50 or resistor based volume controls. Have you found this to be the case?

I am also curious why AVC is not implemented more often in high end audio preamps / integrated amps.



I did understand the autoformers different than TVC in my Statement, which  by the way is dual TVC, one for each channel in fully balanced active pre. I just threw it in there since I thought we were discussing different volume controls in general.


As for passives, I do find @mrdecibel  comments to be accurate as to what I've experienced with passives with pots or resistor based VC. Not heard the autoformers, although was considering at one point, saw usual complaints about passives in general. Not to say passives may work in some setups

The Statement sounds like it does everything well. However, I have eliminated tubes from my system. Enjoy ! My best, MrD.

low powered set amp, an inductive volume control, and high efficient speakers = audio nirvana 😃

I ended up purchasing the icOn 4PRO balanced unit, which has four Slagle autoformers (copper). It is supposed to arrive tomorrow and I look forward to trying it in my system, both as a stand-alone preamp and also as a volume control in front of my SMc unity-gain buffer.

I have been using a Hattor passive preamp (Amtrans AMRG resistors) in front of the SMc buffer for a pretty good sound, and recently tried swapping the Hattor for a Goldpoint passive (SMD resistors) I still have here. Both sound good with the Goldpoint providing a bit more precision and the Hattor providing a bit more body and smoothness - maybe due to the carbon film vs. SMD resistors?

An equipment manufacturer I know has stuck with resistive preamps and told me, in his opinion, "TVCs sounded excellent with simple material, but started getting a bit irritating and “confused” with complex, dynamic music. Ymmv." I notice he said "TVCs" and not "AVCs" so I don’t know whether there will be a difference between the TVC units he has heard and the AVC icOn unit. I also don’t know whether he used the units alone, or in front of an active buffer, or both, and whether that even makes a difference. I will give it a try.

I’m in the process of building a simple avc attenuator with the budget autoformers from Slagle. To be used with my Sayes SET and Omega single drivers.

2 inputs with a switch and 2 outputs

vintage 16 step rotary knob

progress pic HERE  and FRONT

Really looking forward to finally being done with it.

Still need to put in the rca connector and wire it up.