Too excited not to share - TRL Dude tubed preamp

Category: Preamps

I am a 20-year audiofool and thought I had really heard most of what was possible in a home stereo system. I have owned several highly regarded tube and SS preamps costing up to $12,000 new, but this new DUDE preamp from TRL is an absolute sonic breakthrough.

As I listen to music tonight I must say that I am completely overcome with the DUDE. This preamp is the absolute top of the audio chain in terms of sound. If you were to ask me in what ways it is better or what about it makes it the best I have heard, I would be at a loss for words. Why? Because it is not one or two things, rather it is everything. It opens music in my dedicated audio cave in ways I did not think were even possible or attainable.

I know this intro sounds hyped, but it is my honest and actual experience with the new TRL amps - both power and now preamp. I am going to write a full review as I listen to more and more of my collection and the DUDE burns in fully. These are exciting days for me in audio.

Other owners please chime in as the Audiogon cummunity must know more about this breakthrough amp. The DUDE simply transends descriptions like body, texture, organic, extended, natural and commands more - much more. I guess it must be experienced.

I know one easy way for me to explain my experience. When you listen to live amplified music in a great accoustic setting the music is huge, dramatic, full of impact/ energy and is in utter control no matter how loud. The sound is bold and totally uncompressed. Full bodied with detail and texture. You feel the music and it is a live experience. This is the sound of my home stereo now because of the DUDE preamp and 225 power amp.

When I go back to other "well regarded" amps it sounds like a stereo - a puny stereo. Emphasis on puny folks. That is the bottom line description.


Happy in MN

I heard about Paul from another owner - word of mouth. I am lucky I did. Read through the comments here on Agon and see several others are also saying exactly what I have shared here and on other posts. I love music and this hobby. It is a passion of mine. I feel compelled to let others know about this ground breaking gear at reasonable prices.
Hi Bill,

I talked to Paul a couple weeks ago about the 225 amps, this preamp seems to the real deal ?

I'd like to get some picture(s) of the Dude preamp if possible ?

I emailed you off-line for further details.

BTW, nice review, seems very convincing !
Just wait until you hear the new M225.

Let's just say that my old Mono blocks are going back to TRL, ...

You are in for a huge surprise. :)
I love these small companies that come up with killer stuff without multi million $$ R&D budgets!!! The only explanation is a thorough understanding and commitment to what they're doing. Makes me feel good.
BTW: Grannyring, where in MN do you live?
Hi Bill

I am getting more and more interested in this preamp. I have gotten some information from Bill and would like your honest experience:
1. How is the midrange? I really like midrange that is palpable and dense. I am really very worried if the midrange is lean sounding.
2. What about the bass? Is it textured
From your experience, what would be feeling of this with respect to Audio Horizons TP2.1