Not by choice, by necessity. I ended up putting my Counterpoint SA-2000 tube preamp out of comission accidentally while I was changing connections (long, embarrassing story, don't care to elaborate.) Now I've switched to an NAD C160 preamp. I had heard before that preamps make a big difference in your sound, and I sure noticed a big difference, but in a bad way. I found out that had I taken the incredible clarity from my Counterpoint for granted. Don't get me wrong, the NAD sounds good for the money (especially for the price I got it for), but the Counterpoint is (was) way more focused. Highs had sparkle and shimmer, midrange was clear and natural, and bass was tight and tuneful. It also presented a nice deep soundstage despite my small room and proximity to the speakers. The NAD sounds mushy and muddy by comparison. *Sigh* I was actually planning on getting the NAD anyways so I could take a "beater" system with me when I move out to finish college, but I didn't want to use it so soon . I figure if I'm going to send the preamp to Mike Elliot for repairs, I might as well get upgrades for it too. Those will have to wait till I'm done with college.