Contact us
Close contact box

Customer Reviews

Pro-Ject Tube Box DS

Vacuum tube phono preamplifier for moving magnet and moving coil cartridges (Black)

MFR # TubeBox DS-BK

Pro-Ject Tube Box DS

Pro-Ject Tube Box DS

Vacuum tube phono preamplifier for moving magnet and moving coil cartridges (Black)

MFR # TubeBox DS-BK

22 reviews
View this product

Pro-Ject Tube Box DS

Crutchfield customer from San Antonio, TX on 9/30/2018

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

Really have nothing to compare with but seemingly works great with my marantz receiver and turntable and KEF LS50 speakers. When the albums are top notch the whole system shines but is unforgiving on bad recordings. Great way to introduce some warmth from the tubes when you have a solid state amps.

Pros:

Cons:

Crutchfield response on

0 of 0 found this helpful

Tubes Rock!!

Michael from Savannah, GA on 9/15/2018

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

The beauty of tube warmth and matched perfectly to the Pro-Ject 1Xpression Carbon Classic! This little preamp is SWEET out of the box with wonderful separation and depth producing a dreamed about soundstage! It will only get better with break in hours.....and I plan to do just that!!

Pros: Warmth abounding producing a soundstage that disappears before your eyes!

Cons: Ain't none!!

Crutchfield response on
Customer review photo

0 of 0 found this helpful

Quality Preamp

Adam from Somerville, MA on 6/5/2018

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

So far I am very happy with this preamp. Paired with a proper amplifier it sounds great. There are a lot of options for different types of cartridges.

Pros: Very versatile with great sound.

Cons: Instructions are a little confusing.

Crutchfield response on

0 of 0 found this helpful

Pro-Ject Tube Box DS

Crutchfield customer from Chicago, IL on 5/20/2018

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

A very good upgrade for the money. Improved soundstage and clarity, quiet background with no noticeable noise. Extremely happy to have this in my system.

Pros:

Cons:

Crutchfield response on

0 of 0 found this helpful

Great phono preamp for the money

Alan from CO on 3/28/2018

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

Very good phono preamp for the money (Mine was an open box for a lower price). Nice lively and dynamic sound. Nearly silent background. With no record playing there is essentially no noise coming from the speakers except a very faint hiss if I put my ear right up to the speaker. Sometimes tubes can be a problem in this area, but not in this preamp. So far I've used it only with an Audio Technica AT-150MLX mm cartridge so I don't know how well it works with low output mc cartridges, but now that I have a preamp that can be customized to work with just about any cartridge I'll probably experiment with some other cartridges just to see. Just because I'm neurotic I have to monkey with just about every audio product. I tried swapping out the tubes with some vintage RCAs. I think that resulted in a slightly quieter background and better tone, but the difference could be due to confirmation bias. The stock tubes are just fine.

Pros: very reasonably priced; sounds very good; customizable to just about any cartridge

Cons: tubes are kind of difficult to replace

Crutchfield response on

2 of 2 found this helpful

Great little piece of gear

John M. from New Port Richey, FL on 2/14/2018

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

This is a pretty good piece of gear once ya get it all figured out. I paired it to a Jolida JD302CRC integrated tube amp and a Technics SL-Q2 that I've had for years then mounted a Denon DL-110 MC cartridge to the tonearm. Speakers are Klipsh RB-81 and a Definitive Technology Pro Sub 1000. After a little tube rolling and and tweaking the Tube Box I found alot of vinyl was nearly holographic. I'm not sure if it was the 15yr Glenlivet single malt or the sweet spot he sat in, but I saw he was very focused and drooling over Led Zeppelin live soundtrack The Song Remains The Same album. My old Shure V15-III with an aftermarket stylus even sounded great. Worth the purchase, as others have stated instructions not real user friendly, don't be afraid of tinkering with jumpers to get the sound you want. Tube rolling is a pain, very hard to get tubes out be patient and gentle with tubes. Got big fat fingers? Get a friend with smaller fingers to help, if not for instructions and difficulty pulling tubes I would have gave a 5. Have fun and remember some people are impressed with loud distorted music, music lovers are amazed with clean sounding vinyl.

Pros: Can fine tune MC cartidges built heavy. Tubes can be swapped out.

Cons: Owners manual kinda vague. Tubes are difficult to get out for tube rolling.

Crutchfield response on

2 of 2 found this helpful

Get yourself one, you wont be disappointed!

Gregg from Homer Glen, IL on 1/23/2018

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

The Tube Box DS sounds fantastic! A noticeable difference can be heard immediately from the first time you turn it on and gets even better as you log some hours listening to your music. I would highly recommend this product to anyone who wants to get high quality sound from their turntable. Priced at $300 off original price is a bonus also! Check it out on youtube for setup directions as what comes with it may be confusing. Jumpers are small and hard to handle but nothing a pair of tweezers can't fix.

Pros: Outstanding sound quality, looks, and build.

Cons: Directions and jumpers

Crutchfield response on

0 of 0 found this helpful

Pro-Ject Tube Box DS

Crutchfield customer from Caguas, PR on 1/15/2018

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

Excellent pure, and Clean Great price and Comunication Thank, Crutchfield

Pros:

Cons:

Crutchfield response on

0 of 0 found this helpful

Semi-tube amp; great sound for the price.

Crutchfield customer from Irvine, CA on 1/10/2018

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

This sounds great. I was worried about warm-up time for the tubes but I can say that even cold it sounds superior to the built-in phono preamp in my Yamaha receiver. I have not used it enough to say if it sounds even better warming up but it does sound acceptable when cold. Better sound than the NAD PP4 (this is not too surprising given the price points). Be aware that this is not an all-tube amp, if that matters for you.

Pros: Great sound.

Cons: The jumper settings are a little bit of a pain; DIP switches would have been preferred. The RCA terminals are a little far apart: the Audioquest cables can just about make it; with separate cables this would not be an issue.

Crutchfield response on

0 of 0 found this helpful

Overall very good, just a few quirks.

Ron from Cumming, GA on 12/27/2017

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

I really enjoy this little Tube Phono Pre amp. Based on the sound quality I would give it a 5 Star rating. I have to go with 4 though simply because the owner's manual is terrible. Why would the quality of the manual be an issue? I have a Sumiko Bluepoint #2 High output Moving coil cartridge. There are a number of Jumpers on the rear of the unit that have to be configured properly to match your cartridge (MC, MM High output MC etc). The manual only displays a few options and says to refer to the manufacturer's specs for your cartridge. So I had to spend a considerable amount if time deciphering info from different sources to determine the correct jumper settings. I'm still not 100% sure if it is correct, since it seems to work well with a number of different combinations. Still it has made a definite improvement in my TT listening experience. The jumpers themselves are fairly difficult to work with. So since it is working very well with the current config I'll leave it as is unless and until I get some better info on specifics for my cart. It would be extremely helpful if the manufacturer provided a list of carts and related jumper settings online. I'll continue to monitor TT forums in hopes that someone will post optimal settings.

Pros: Sounds great!

Cons: Jumper settings are unclear based on the manual and difficult to use.

Crutchfield response on

4 of 4 found this helpful

Pro-Ject Tube Box DS

Crutchfield customer from Princeton, NJ on 12/13/2017

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

What started as revving up the old Kenwood turntable quickly became a new TT with a Denon 301mkII cartridge and, of course, the need for a phono preamp. The Tube Box DS's ability to match the cartridge's output impedence of 33 ohms was a game changer. If you are fortunate enough, like me, to have a pristine record collection pre-1974 you can truly enjoy all the music locked in those grooves. The soundstage is like hearing music for the first time. Whether the highs off the cymbals, the "breathiness" of N Simone's vocals or the clean lines from the bass, the DS really locks it all in. I tried two earlier preamps and although the last one made you smile when listening, the Tube DS really took it to the next level. My objective was to make this just short of an obsession and The Pro-Ject Tube Box DS got me the sound I was looking for and the ability to bring out the best in the 301mkII at a reasonable price.

Pros:

Cons:

Crutchfield response on

2 of 2 found this helpful

Nice improvement for the price

Raymond from Alexandria, VA on 12/10/2017

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

I bought this preamp as an upgrade to the built-in preamp on my Klipsch r-15pm powered speakers. The difference was immediately noticible; not breathtaking, but a big difference. Clearer all-around, more detail, better stereo separation, larger soundstage, and much better imaging. Very noticible on my new Fleet Foxes albums where the bands characteristic reverb was really emphasized, and detail like fingering on guitar strings/frets really stood out. All of this was heard on some gerryrigged patch cable. I have some high quality rca cable on its way and can't wait to see what happens. One of the best parts about purchasing this preamp was the price. After reading other positive reviews on Crutchfield's Outlet,I figured id give it a shot. My cost was a bargain from the Crutchfield outlet and I have yet to figure out why the preamp was sold as scratch-and-dent. The power source doesn't seem to be original, and the jumpers seemed like they were tossed into the box last minute, so that may be why. I'd definitely recommend trying the scratch-and-dent bin before buying anything full price.

Pros: -Price -Lots of options and room to upgrade cartridges in the future. -Great sound

Cons: - I have a feeling I'll be losing the spare jumpers - Blue LED the front is REALLY bright. It's minor, and can probably be covered up.

Crutchfield response on

2 of 3 found this helpful

Love to hate, hate to love

Sean from Flemington, NJ on 10/28/2017

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

Not what I was looking for but my ears don't lie, it sounds great. I'm tempted to return this and find something that isn't a hybrid.

Pros: -Fantastic sound stage -Clear tight bass without being punchy -Detailed and accurate sound with little to no coloration -Solid chassis and construction -Tubes are well protected from EMI, microphonics and physical damage

Cons: -This is not a true tube preamp, it's a hybrid. I did not know this when I bought it and I'm disappointed. The silcon op-amps in this probably have enough gain for my set-up which makes the tubes more for show than function. -It's powered by a cheapo power supply. -Overpriced for what it is. I would think one of Pro-ject's non-tube preamps probably sounds just as good for less money.

Crutchfield response on

8 of 10 found this helpful

Pro-Ject Tube Box DS

Crutchfield customer from New York, NY on 10/11/2017

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

Amazing phono stage. Brings your turntable to the next level.

Pros:

Cons:

Crutchfield response on

1 of 1 found this helpful

Outstanding Budget Phono Preamp!

Devin from Houston, TX on 10/3/2017

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

I owned a very well reviewed BUDGET phono preamp, and was experiencing some issues. I ordered the Tube Box DS and it fixed the issues. Somehow, it also eliminated some distortion I was hearing. My bass was noticeably more present and controlled, and I finally started to feel like I was edging into Hi-Fi territory. Jazz went from mediocre to AWESOME and ALIVE. To say you could hear the difference would be a bit of an understatement. I am way pleased with this purchase, my 2nd from crutchfield. These guys are great and they haven't seen the last of my wallet. Don't tell my wife.

Pros: Cleaner sound, better,punchier bass, awesome imaging, super quiet

Cons: None that I can see!

Crutchfield response on

3 of 3 found this helpful

Good product

Keith from Manassas, VA on 9/20/2017

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

I like it, works well. The jumper settings are cumbersome, but not really a big deal... probably better electrically than knobs and switches anyway. My second Pro-ject box and I think that for the price, this is worthwhile with much less snake oil. 4 stars just cuz nuthin's perfect. Funny though, it came with this extra donut-shaped part that for the life of me, I cannot figure out what it's for. I imagine it's supposed to be one of two alternative tube protection discs, with a larger center hole. I only got one donut, so not sure about that. The manual says nothing about this part.

Pros: great construction, quiet, accurate signal, warm, easy install

Cons: jumper settings, the manual seems incomplete

Crutchfield response on

1 of 1 found this helpful

Pro-Ject Tube Box DS

Lynn from Fort Wayne, IN on 9/4/2017

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

The Pro-Ject Tube Box DS was a definite improvement over the phono stage I was using before.

Pros: Warm sound Great channel separation Nice punchy bass

Cons: I keep forgetting to turn it off at night. >:(

Crutchfield response on

1 of 1 found this helpful

Pro-Ject Tube Box DS

Larry from North Las Vegas, NV on 8/6/2017

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

Easy to setup and delivers excellent sound.

Pros:

Cons:

Crutchfield response on

1 of 1 found this helpful

Pro-Ject Tube Box DS

Mick from Newton, IA on 5/10/2017

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

Sounds great right out of the box, Quality/Value. This Tube Box DS seems to be a perfect match for the Project RM5 that I've had Since 08. I have Listened to vinyl since 1974 and still have some of those same albums today, It is really like hearing them for the first time again. Only thing else I can say is I consider this a real bargain at the price ,Thank You.

Pros: Price/quality. Plug and play right out of the box.

Cons: Users Manual not very user friendly. Says you can make tweaks but so far none of the changes sound as good as the original settings

Crutchfield response on

5 of 5 found this helpful

The Tube Box DS is LEGIT!!!

Dana from Memphis, TN on 2/18/2017

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

I recently upgraded my 2 channel system. I bought another main amp and have them both bridged to essentially have mono blocks now. I bought a new TT also. The amps tightened the bass and increased overall output and dynamic. The TT made everything more detailed and tightened the bass somewhat. I had an NAD PP2 and thought why not try an upgrade there as well. I was Very skeptical of the phono preamp being so critical. A Tube Box DS was in open box so I snatched it up! The improvement was immediate and evident on every single album I have played. I have only had this installed for 2.5 days and have already listened to about 20 records. For the first 10 I kept the NAD out and would go back and forth. 100% success each time....obvious improvement. What did I get from the DS, everything! There was another step up in detail and clarity for the mids, highs and soundstage. The bass really tightened up and is just so nice! I had a great sounding system and have now spent a lot of money over the last few weeks and that makes me cringe a little, but it just sounds sooooo sweet now! Obviously you have to have the full package with the right amplification and speakers to get the full benefit, but if you are considering an expensive phono preamp, I suspect you do. Good luck and happy listening!

Pros: Soundstage Detail Bass Everything

Cons: Price

Crutchfield response on

5 of 5 found this helpful

Pro-Ject Tube Box DS

Crutchfield customer from Kirkland, WA on 8/14/2016

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

This little phone amp made a big difference in the natural sound quality of my sound system. A little spendy, but well worth the investment.

Pros:

Cons:

Crutchfield response on

1 of 2 found this helpful

A Dramatic Difference!

Gregory Martin Wodark from Coto De Caza, CA on 3/31/2016

Verified customer (What's this?)
Verified employee purchase (What's this?)

I ordered this phono stage to go with my new Pro-Ject Debut Carbon (DC)Turntable. I actually had ordered the somewhat less costly model with tubes, just below this one in price. I noticed just now it is still, out of stock! I waited months for my order to come in. It never did! Finally, I called Crutchfield, and got them to order this model (which they did not carry at the time). I wanted to stay with a tube design after reading about the warmer sound quality. I cannot tell you how it compares with other phono preamps. However, it made a dramatic, almost night and day difference in the sound from the turntable.

Pros: -Dynamic range and punch! - Rich, warm, sound quality . - Makes music from the turntable truly come alive!

Cons: -Cost

Crutchfield response on

17 of 18 found this helpful

TOP