matching pre for Dynaco mk4 monoblocks

Hi All,

I just purchased my first pair of monoblocks, a set of Dynaco mk4's that have been fully recapped and are running the 2x 12au7 mod, and would love thoughts on a nice preamp to match. this would be my first set of separates, I'm currently running a Jolida 202a that I want to improve on. I could spend up to 3k on a preamp, but I'm open to spending less if the right fit doesn't cost that much. I've heard with these Dynacos that a SS pre might be the right thing, but I'm open to tubes too! was thinking something modern, perhaps the Benchmark LA4, or the SPL elector, both would be attractive to me with the smaller form factor - this is for a bedroom system, driving Buchardt S400's. I'm intrigued by the Rogue RP-1, and the EAR 834L, and am curious if people think an all tube chain would be a bad thing. I'm mostly a vinyl listener, rock and jazz, and have a Linn lp12 with an Ittok and an MC cart. I have a musical surroundings phono stage I could continue to use, but if the pre had a nice MC capable stage that would be a plus. the guy I bought the Dynaco's from had suggested an old Kenwood C-1 at only 250$! thanks again for ideas here.


The Kenwood C-1 would be a good match, especially at that price! I have one in my collection. An excellent sounding preamp competitive with today's four-figure gear!

If you like what good tubes have to offer, an all tube chain can be amazing.  I'd definitely go with tubes in a preamp for that amp.  VTA from has some great options. 


In my opinion for vintage, the Kenwood C-1 is nice but I prefer the Luxman C-12 preamp. List price new in 1976 was $600 (I did purchase one new in 1976 along with a pair of Luxman B12 mono amps, and had such for 30 years!). For something new, maybe look at the Schiit Freya+ or a Schiit Kara...


lots of Dynaco pass preamps out there maybe one of those to match, but yes to a tube preamp.

Be carful with the Mk4 mono's they tend to blow transformers if not biased correctly and if over driven hard. They may not be enough power for the Buchardt S400 if you intend to crank them up at all. Just be carful. 

thanks for all these thoughts everyone! have a friend willing to let go of a VAC standard LE, so I think I'll start with that.