Lehmann Audio Black Cube SE II Phono Stage
My listening session with the Black Cube ends up being lengthier than anticipated, but it’s for the right reasons. I can’t quite believe how good it sounds. If the Leema is the seductive ‘analogue magic’ scented candle of phono stages, this is the one wearing Nike Air Presto trainers. It’s fast, agile, remarkably light on its feet and wonderfully transparent.
HI-FI CHOICE, 2020
The Black Cube SE II comes with top notch technology that points towards higher price points, like all Lehmannaudio electronics.
The input stages used in the this device can also be found in top notch mixing consoles or in well known professional microphone preamps. The entirely passive RIAA equalization network is realized with high precision foil capacitors to realize an artefact-free transport of microdynamics and room information. The switches for gain and load settings have gold plated connectors for reliable performance.
The maximum gain of the Black Cube SE II is high enough for even very low output MC cartridges. Cartridge adaption itself is totally flexible because gain and lading can be chosen independently from each other. To top this all off, there is a slot for a custom impedance resistor, so that even the most exotic MC cartridges can be loaded adequately without having to buy expensive impedance plugs. No soldering needed.
Because of the small outer dimensions, the SE II audio section can be placed next to the turntable. This minimizes loss due to cable length.
Lehmann audio always pays special attention to details: the cable between power supply and audio section is shielded and ensures flexible placement of audio section and PWX power supply. The cases of both the power supply and the audio section are made of non-magnetic aluminum; additionally equipped with a top cover coated with a special anti-resonance treatment for better suppression of microphonic effects.
A brand new feature that is built into the SE II is the entirely passive bass filter, that is a great help when tailoring the lower corner frequency of the vinyl reproduction to personal needs. 16 different filter curves can be realized.