VEGA G2 as preamp/volume control vs. passive preamp


I’ve read that it is best to keep sources at full volume/volume control bypass. However, I am using the VEGA G2 as my preamp going directly to my amp with XLR. Would there be any benefit to getting a high quality passive pre (volume control/attenuator) between the VEGA G2 and my Amp and run the VG2 at full bore?

Perhaps AURALiC’s design makes volume control implementation superior than the conventional?

The output is about twice the typical preamp voltage - a factor?

I can also vary gain before the VG2 within Roon, either using headroom control or volume leveling. Is there pro/con to lowering the gain some there?

Thanks for any input (pun intended :stuck_out_tongue:).


I was using my G2 with a Parasound P5 preamp, and am now using the G2’s pre directly into my Meraks. I think the sound is slightly better when using an external pre, and having the VEGA G2 at full bore…but am still testing. I have a Simaudio Moon P5.3se preamp that I will be hooking the VEGA G2 up to with its volume set at 100. I will let you know my findings…



Thanks Scott. I look forward to your impressions. I do have a tube preamp (Dennis Had Inspire LP-2), but it is active. I don’t need more gain, but it may be worth taking out of storage to give it a try.

BTW, is there a setting in the VEGA G2 for use as pre vs. volume control bypass (rather than set at 100)? I don’t recall as I’ve been using it as a pre since day one.



Not that I am aware of. I just turn it up to 11, and let the pre do the work! : )


You’re correct. I’m home now and checked. I’ve seen that setting on other DAC/pre’s and see there is a volume setting for “master” or “separate” for inputs. That’s probably what got me thinking of it.

I’m thinking of getting out my Inspire Pre and checking that out. Maybe this weekend.


Sounds like a plan. I am going to hook up my Moon on Friday…and give it nice workout this weekend…look forward to comparing notes.


Cool. Here is fine since others may join in but, if we should be doing this privately, let us know. Nice to generate a little excitement about what we are doing in addition to normal question and answer stuff, IMO. :sun_with_face:

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External pre-amplifier will add some ‘color’ to the signal and it may sound subjectively ‘better’ :grinning:


Hi Xuanqian, Thanks for joining in. My main question is whether running the VEGA G2 at full output using an external attenuator, between it and the amp, would offer any benefit. The “pro” of having the V at full output would have to outweigh the “con” of another piece in the signal path. The attenuator doesn’t have to be an active preamp or even a passive with buffer. For example, I have a Shiit Sys I could try. But, if I wanted this solution to be permanent, I would want to find something like that with a remote.

But now I see that there is no volume control bypass in the VEGA G2, so it would be run at 100. Maybe some benefit from running full open but, can you tell us that your volume control design would not benefit from a complete bypass (I hope so!). In other words, the volume control you incorporate doesn’t have negative impact on the sound (as most do seem to).



Peter, if the external attenuator is a passive model then it will only degrade the sound quality (at least by measurement). The attenuator will increase the line impedance of the cable after attenuator which make the cable much easier to pick up noise from environment. The attenuator will also add Johnson–Nyquist noise by resistor’s natural. Both those two characters will degrade the SNR of your entire system buy the sound maybe smoothed out.


Hi Xuanqian,

Thanks for the explanation. It sounds like an experiment not worth hassling with. My recabling would be a pain since I’m running XLR to my main amp and RCA to my woofers/subs and the attenuator is all RCA out.

At one time, I would have looking for smoother. Until the LEO, I was using the smooth filter in the VEGA G2. Now I am using dynamic as the highs sound more natural after the LEO arrived.

I think I will let this particular pursuit go!



Hi Xuanqian?
If my plan is to use VEGA G2 as preamp to connect with current home entertainment center/ AV center, should I connect through the RCA analog input on G2? is it a good approach?


Yes, and you may want to enable a function inside VEGA G2 called HT Bypass. This feature enables VEGA G2 to bypass its internal volume control and gain circuit with unity gain its analog input to output.

This is very important to keep gain without change if you use AV system with surrounding sound feature and the AV pre-amplifier do all channel’s SPL calibration.


Thanks a lot.
any comparison/ listening feedback for such configuration/ setup done by your team or customer that can share?
I just want to simplify the signal path.


I have it set up for Home Theater. As Xuanqian said, go into settings and turn on HT Bypass.

With this method, you wouldn’t use the VEGA as a preamp. The purpose is to integrate your theater and audio sides of your system so they can both use the same amp and speakers.

Analog connection from your AVR to the VEGA. Use the analog input. Control volume at your AVR. This renders the VEGA neutral in the chain, as if it weren’t there.

Works perfectly well for me. Sound is not an issue unless you are purist enough to feel that having the VEGA in your A/V chain when it doesn’t contribute is a negative. Doesn’t affect the audio side in any way.

HTH …Pete


Thanks a lot, Pete.


Another question.
if I want to get best out of music file stored in USB thumb drive, should I connect directly to VEGA G2? or should I connect to ARIES G2 to leverage its more powerful computing platform, then send the signal to VEGA G2 through L-Link?


The VEGA G2 does not have USB connection so you can not plug it into it. You can plug it into any of ARIES series then connect to the VEGA G2. if you use ARIES G2 then you can use Lightning Link connection, otherwise you can use USB or digital output connections.


noted and thanks