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Giant Killing Allegri + Preamplifier

The Townshend Allegri+ – A Benchmark in Preamplifier Excellence

In the ever-evolving world of high-fidelity audio equipment, some products stand the test of time, becoming benchmarks for quality and performance. The Townshend Allegri+ passive preamplifier is one such product. Launched as an upgrade to its predecessor, the Allegri, the Allegri+ has impressed audiophiles and critics alike, continuing to set the standard for transparency and sound fidelity.

The original Allegri, reviewed back in 2008, quickly became a reference point in the world of preamplifiers. Its ability to deliver unparalleled sound quality at a price significantly lower than its high-end competitors made it a favorite among those who seek excellence without breaking the bank. The Allegri+ builds on this legacy, introducing subtle but impactful improvements that enhance both functionality and performance.

Design and Features

At first glance, the Allegri+ retains the elegant simplicity of its forebear. The casework is slightly larger, and the front panel features twin knobs for input selection and volume control, maintaining the classic look while offering enhanced usability. The primary functional upgrades include a mute switch and a front panel input on a minijack, making it more versatile for modern use cases.

One of the most significant internal upgrades is the application of Townshend’s proprietary Fractal-Wire process to the copper within the transformers and connecting wires. Now processed in the UK, this change is touted by company founder Max Townshend as superior to the previous method. This refinement is aimed at further reducing signal loss and enhancing overall sound clarity.


The Allegri+ employs an autotransformer to vary the attenuation of the incoming signal, a design that ensures the in- and output impedances adjust with the volume level. This auto-matching results in exceptional transparency and dynamic range, with minimal interference from cable capacitance.

The volume control offers 24 positions, ranging from -52dB to 0dB, with smaller 1dB steps between positions 11 and 19. This precise control allows users to fine-tune their listening experience based on speaker sensitivity and personal preference. The lack of capacitors in the signal path further ensures that the sound remains pure and uncolored.

Listening Experience

After extensive use, it is clear that the Allegri+ lives up to its promise of delivering an immersive audio experience. It is as transparent and tonally neutral as its predecessor, if not more so. This means that it faithfully reproduces the source material, whether it’s coming from a high-quality streamer, phono stage, or DAC.

Compared to other transformer passives, the Allegri+ stands out for its bass extension and detail resolution. While some alternatives may offer a smoother sound, they often fall short in delivering the same level of openness and dynamic accuracy. The Allegri+ excels in these areas, providing an unadulterated listening experience that audiophiles crave.

Practical Considerations

Despite its many strengths, the Allegri+ is not without minor drawbacks. The lack of a remote control means users must manually adjust the volume, which, while beneficial for health, can be seen as a minor inconvenience. Additionally, the closely spaced inputs on the rear panel may pose a challenge for those using bulkier RCA plugs. However, these issues are minor compared to the overall value and performance the Allegri+ offers.


The Townshend Allegri+ sets a new standard for passive preamplifiers. It combines exceptional sound quality with thoughtful design improvements, making it a top choice for discerning audiophiles. Priced at £2,495, it offers a level of performance typically reserved for much more expensive equipment.

For those seeking maximum fidelity and an immersive listening experience, the Allegri+ is an outstanding investment. It not only meets but exceeds the high expectations set by its predecessor, earning it a well-deserved Editor’s Choice award. With the Allegri+, Townshend Audio continues to prove that excellence in audio reproduction is not about adding more, but about refining and perfecting what’s already there.


  • Type: Passive transformer preamplifier
  • Analogue inputs: 6x RCA, 3.5mm minijack
  • Analogue outputs: 2x RCA
  • Frequency response: 8Hz – 100KHz
  • Max signal level: 4V RMS 8Hz, 10V RMS 20Hz
  • Dimensions (HxWxD): 53 x 135 x 326mm
  • Weight: 2kg
  • Finish: Silver
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