Rouge Audio RP-7

Hello everyone. 


I dont see much talk about Rouge Audio products on here. Anyone have experience with their pre amps? I don't have much experience with hybrid pre amps. Was looking for a match with the Coda no.8 amplifier that I have coming in a month :)


I had the RP-5 for about 10 months and later traded it in on a PS Audio BHK Pre. Just some of my observations:

1. You had to (maybe it has changed since) to take entire back cover off to access tubes. The BHK has a small lid on top with two screws holding in place over tube area.

2. My copy had some noise /hiss issues. I even changed tubes...still there. Plus the screen went blank. Both fixed under warranty...a big pain to ship.

3. Sounded more SS than tube with stock JJ tubes. The BHK has a smoothness to the mids and highs with stock PSvanes. I switched to Gold Lions.

4. Nice remote

5. Mono button (I wish the BHK had one)

6. The RP-5 Includes a basic phono (I never tried) or you can switch it to a regular input

Overall, the fit and finish of the BHK is superior IMO and the sound is much more refined. Plus, later on I decided I wanted Balanced which the RP-7 DOES have.

The RP-5 was a fine unit, just the warranty issue, tube access, etc made it more frustrating. Most owners love the RP series Pre’s. Above was was just my experience. I wanted, at one time, wanted to try a Stereo 100 amp. I realize things do happen from time to time and Rogue has top notch customer service.

So they acknowledged that the noise/hiss wasn't normal and fixed it? How long have you had it before things started going wrong? Yeah...I had an assumption it'd sound more ss. Seems like hybrids are a little gimmicky...where there's this implication that you will be getting the best of both worlds.  

Yes. The hiss/noise was super loud from the start. I purchased a new pair of JJ tubes and the same thing. My amp at the time had super high gain (34 db) so I thought that I needed to lower the gain on the pre output side. I purchased a pair of Harrison labs Attenuators (12 DB I believe) and noise and hiss was still loud. Then, one day I turned the pre on and the display would not come on, but the button lights did work and the pre worked as well. I contacted Rogue who had me send it in. They replaced the display module and some time of input or output board. When it returned the noise was gone and the tube hiss was normal (I then purchased a Schiit passive pre) to lower the hiss until I got an amp with lower gain (Firstwatt J-2). After all that no issues. The Rogues are fine equipment and the company addressed everything with no hassle. 

I had a RP5 for 15 months and never had any problems with it. I did not like having to remove from my rack and remove top cover to configure the Moving coil phono and change tubes.  I went with NOS Mullard. My preamp was dead quiet, felt the remote was a joke. $3500 for a preamp with a $5.00 remote.  For the price, they should have included a metal remote.  I sold it because I went all in on McIntosh. 

I had the RP-7 for several years until I had Rogue upgrade the unit to the RP-9.

The RP7 was very good, a bargain for the price.  Low noise level. Good dynamics, sound stage. Bass was not fuzzy or thick.  Treble was not bright.  Midrange solid.  I did not use the phono stage. I had it feeding initially the Rogue ST100 (modified as "dark") and then the Rogue Apollo Darks amps. I listen to classical and jazz through Sonus Faber Amati Tradition speakers with Nordost Valhalla cables.  I had Rogue do the upgrade to the RP9.  The RP9 is a significant step up, although at first you might not even recognize the change. The RP9 has an even lower noise floor.  The treble is more open (Rogue calls it more airy) and smooth or silky not harsh or bright.  Midrange is even more distinct and the bass is more dynamic, differentiated. Sound stage even better in that it is definitely deeper and somewhat wider.  (RP-9 is feeding the Apollos.)  Dealing with Mark at Rogue has been a pleasure. His knowledge is remarkable, his designs show the spark of genius, and he is really willing to educate and help the customer. Just a very personable, nice person.

I been running the RP-1 for years.  After the stock tubes got noisy I replaced them with matched Mullards and its been sounding nice ever since. Rogue always answered the phone when I called and was always helpful. I think the phono stage is really good for a $1.7K pre.  Rogue helped me dial the MC settings.   Just wish mine had XLR. 

I used mine to front a PSA S300 class D and enjoyed the combination for a couple years.  Not a problem out of either unit.

As stated the remote is embarrassingly cheap

I had a RH-5 in house for a couple of weeks.  I think it represents Rogue's best value.  You get a full preamp, balanced in and balanced out, AND a headphone amp.  It has three levels of gain, adjustable from the front panel.  I think the display could be nicer looking and the remote is cheesy.  Still it costs exactly half the RP-7. Narrowly beaten out by a Backert.  BTW it was utterly quiet on all three gain levels.

Ha. I realized I misspelled it soon after I posted. It's there forever now :)

I appreciate everyone sharing their experiences with the Rogue preamps. I didn't realize they all have a phono stage. Was hoping they had a pre without one. I enjoy what my present seperate phono pre can do.  Would the RH 5 be a good way to go if I wanted to get my foot in the door? Example, if I didn't enjoy it...the rp7 or rp9 prob wouldn't improve my impressions 2 much? Or are they not even comparable on any level?

I read this posting with interest. I had recommended Rogue  to someone about twenty years ago. It blew a tube shortly after my friend received his… it took out the channel. The owner argued that it was not covered by warranty… the tube did it, although it was only a month old. I was humiliated. So, I do not normally comment on Rouge. But this chain is not much of an endorsement.


I would look at an Used Audio Research preamp. They are world class, and if you are spending $5K, you should get something really outstanding. Built like a tank, ready for a lifetime of outstanding performance. Look at ARC Referebce 3 or higher.

@ghdprentice thank you for your candor & recommendation

Audio Research is no joke. May have a hard time finding one in the same price range as rp7...

I have no experience with Rogue, but my ARC Classic 60 and SP 9 Mk lll are in for their first service in 30+ years. I thought they were expensive when purchased, what runs this long and sounds so good???? Pretty good investment IMHO.

A LS series ARC is what you need at your budget and liking your existing phono. Or an Aesthetix. A Ref 3 can be had around $3.5-4 k and is a Bad A linesrage.

I have a lot of respect for Rogue, excellent gear engineering and support. Tge Apollo Dark Mono punch far above $$$$$.

I have their Ares Magnum Phono preamp. It is amazing. 

Contact Robin Wyatt as he is a Rogue Rep, is good friends with the product designer and knows the products inside and out.

I've owned two Rogue pre amps.Never any issues. I have an rp100 at present and have no desire to replace it ever.The remote is cheesy for sure:-)The performance is excellent though.

If you have a coda no 8 on the way just get the CODA 07x FET Pre-Amp.  It is an insanely good pre-amp.

I bought a Rogue RP-7, summer of 2020, to replace a Canary Audio C630 tube preamp. Reason being I had purchased a Decware Torii Junior, and whereas I very much enjoyed the liquid sound, just couldn’t push output beyond 90dB at listening distance, with 92dB Focal Aria 936 speakers, using a Canary Audio C630.

Canary Audio, 9dB max gain, output impedence 1,600 ohms, Rogue Audio 14dB max gain, output impedence 500 ohms. I thought the RP-7 would blow the C630 out of the water. But even turning volume up to 80-90%, I could barely hear the music, 50-60dB. What? I am still perplexed by this result, and ended up returning the RP-7, at a 20% restocking fee (thanks HiFi Heaven!), and selling the Decware unit, buying a PrimaLuna. Very happy with the sound of the Canary preamp, just needed more watts in the power amp. Any comments on the results based on specs for these preamps? I obviously am not an electrical engineer.

@jaudio1 yeah. I'm upgrading my whole system... I started about 7 months ago but Because of supply chain issues and me being stubborn with what i wanted...everything is just now starting to come together at once. 6500 is more i can spend when theres already appx 12-13000 being spent in a short period of time. I did get an offer for a 07x...but its the 2015/2016 version and the dealer was asking 3k. If it was 2019/2020 I'd jump on it...I just haven't heard of any comparisons of the before and after Coda upgrad in 2019. I went down a quick rabbit hole of audio research and found a ref 5e for appx 6500(probably negotiate it down) and ls28 for 4800(also negotiable). 



I bought a RP 7 new in 2019 and loved it. I concur with the positive comments written above. I rolled the tubes which is super in-expensive as you can roll two of the four and get 80% of the change with just two of the four tubes. This allows you to buy two pairs of NOS tubes and put the sound you prefer in the front position and relegate the second choice to the back, in the mix but not dominate. 

The RP 7 is VERY quiet and was a great mix of SS and tube sound. It's a great way to move into the tube component world. I sold the RP 7 and bought a used ARC REF 10 dual box monster. The REF 10 is a very impressive unit, but it seems they worked to make it less tube sounding and they accomplished that. It sounded almost SS. I currently run a Modwright LS 300 line stage which I like very much. I would summarize that the RP7 has nothing to be ashamed about being compared to these more expensive preamps. The RP 7 is reliable, musical, and QUIET. They have an even rich tone, bottom to top. They are resolving, but the more expensive preamps edge it out in the area of resolution. I believe that's where the RP9 comes into play. I doubt few of us would not like the RP 7 if it was dropped into our system. 

@upnorthsound glad you brought up your experience. I've been trying to wrap my head around everything you brought up for almost a week. I feel like this stuff is like learning to ride a bike or learning to play euchre. One day it will all click. 

If you order a RP-7 you can request an aluminum remote for a small upcharge. 

I've had 3 different Rogue preamps over the years; a sixty six, an Rp-1, and currently an RP-7. The sixty six sounded like a tube preamp but the phono stage was pretty poor. The RP-1 was a moderate step up but the sound got kore solid state. I can't comment on the phono stage because I used an external one. I wanted more of that tube sound back so I put a couple NOS brimar tubes and while it did warm up a but it seemed quite noisy. I sold it and upgraded to the RP-7. I agree that having to take the whole cover off is a pain for switching out tubes. But this am is not just an RP-5 with balances in and outs. It's a different design and man, it is dead quiet. Again, these hybrid amps tend to sound fairly solid state with the stock tubes but I'm currently running some bugle boys in the front and Mazdas back it's it's opened up a fair bit. I have the metal remote which is very nice. Mark and nick at rogue have aways been great. I had my old M120s upgraded to 180s and wow, big difference. 


Having said all that, I'm thinking about a change. I reached out to a couple dealers about an ARC. Inhave vandersteen speakers and ARC/vandersteen is such a classic pairing. Gonna be a minute before I can make that happen though. The Rogue, in my opinion, punches way out of its price range and while it deserves to be in the conversation with he big boys like ARC or VAC it's probably going to lose but do so at half the price. 

The top end Primaluna Pre looks interesting. Especially the ability to select gain which is great if one has efficient speakers and switches amps often

I had an RP-7 and thought it was decent. There was an issue with noise coming from one channel which turned out to be related I think to the front end logic board, which Rogue promptly fixed. Sensing there was more resolution and bass impact to be had, I upgraded successively to a Pass XP-22, a PS Audio BHK Signature, then finally to the awesome ARC Ref 6SE. The Rogue was bested by all of those. It rounded the leading edge of transients. It would be a fine choice in a second system.


I really love the sound of Rogue. The RH-5 is an exceptional value plus you have the option to get the built I phono stage. Also, I asked about the remote. They said for an extra $100 you can order a metal remote for most of their stuff. The RP-9 is incredible but it does run hot, but the sound is like butter. I say get the RH-5 with the metal remote and the phono preamp if you need one. I still think the Rogue Sphinx is a hidden gem of an integrated amp. Even with an inexpensive tt it sounded great. I still have my first tt. The AT LP3. With a Nag MP110 cart. For $350 it’s a great, full auto tt. 

The RP-5 was the best sounding between the others I owned- the RH-5 and the RP-7.  

The RH-5 Headphone / Linestage was the best value with balanced connections and had the best dynamics and was exceedingly transparent and neutral.  

The RP-7 was actually less dynamic sounding then the RH-5 (Rogue's latest model) and a little too smooth / burnished for my system.  

The RP-5 was in between, sounding nearly a perfect balance between transparent neutral and overly smooth.  The sound was open, transparent yet had a slight tubey burnish / polish that was easy on the ears and ultra refined.  

That said I prefer the sound of my Cary SLP-05 which is my end game preamp.  

Did you mean Rogue Audio or Rouge Audio?


Here's a link to Rouge Audio.





The RH-5 and RP-5 seem like great value. I think I looked over the RH-5 because I don’t use headphones. I actually may have lucked out. There may be a dealer within 30 miles of me that sell both Rogue and Audio Research. Going to call on Tuesday. @dekay I meant Rogue. I think rouge popped up becaue I live close to a river named Rouge and my phone trys to guess what I’m saying. I tried to edit it but the forum wouldn’t let me. :)

I just assumed the sound signature of the rp5 and rp7 would be extremely similar just your paying for balanced connections.  


I wish there was a audio business that lent audio gear the same way home depot rents tools. 



I was kidding you, but this guy does have some great/informational vids (and his rouge usage reminds me of my Scotts Irish Grandma Nellie in her latter years).



@aberyclark The ARC Ref 6SE has a greater sense of depth and layering and can drive amps much more powerfully. The SE upgrade also brings a stunning new level of clarity that I’d never heard before. The BHK gives only a hint at the ARCs presentation due to it’s tube front end. I believe the SS output stage holds it back ultimately and it sounds flat in comparison, more like the Pass XP-22.