Review : 12-Level Step Volume Controller 10K / 50K / 100K Pot

Budget Esoterica Review Magazine
June 2018 Issue

12-Level Step Volume Controller 10K / 50K / 100K Pot

As you recall i recently reviewed the Nobsound passive preamp and found it to be a little lacking in the bass and dynamics. I decided i would try to find something with a little beefier sound for around the same amount of money. 
That leads me to this review of the 12-Level Step Volume Controller sold by  Ebay seller, 2012htj*2012htj .  Say that three times fast. It sells for just under $60 with free shipping. 

Not only is this volume controller a little beefier sounding than  the Nobsound preamp, it also has an extra input. Rather than the understated elegance of the Nobsound, the volume controller shoots for the cute and cuddly side of the fence and it hits it on the nail head. With what looks to be cool Chinese writing flanked on either side of the gold or silver knob with the word "Volume" on top you might mistake this piece for Chinese art work. The volume knob is so strong and precise you might think you are opening up your dad's safe. Don't get too excited, though, you are going to need to use this with at least an 80 watt power amp to get appreciable volume levels. 

Have you ever noticed that some amplifiers lean towards a silvery sound and others can have a little bit of a golden tone? This is just one area to consider when discussing the ying and yang of audio amplification. Where the Nobsound has a refreshing clean silvery sound, the 12-Step Volume Controller can lean towards a slight golden tone with maybe a little warmth. Which do you prefer? I like them both. Essentially we have two flavors of preamps built for audiophile connoisseurs who like to have a choice. 

So with the 12-Step Volume Controller you are gaining a little bit of dynamics with a different perspective in tone. I really like the addition of the extra input which is controlled on the back with a toggle switch. This allowed me to hook up both a cd player and a FM tuner to my preamp. I think  a lot of audiophiles will appreciate that. 

Associated Equipment

80 watt power amp
Onkyo DV-SP405
Mission Bookshelf Speakers
Energy speaker stands
Ultralink and Belden audio interconnects
Fatman speaker cable