I recently purchased the CF Balanced and connected it between my DAC (Sony HAPZ1-ES) and the XPA-2 balanced inputs. USP-1 is connected to the RCA outputs on HAPZ1-ES and XPA-2 RCA inputs though Harrison attenuators to improve the USP-1 volume control sensitivity. I like the sound quality of both options and would like to keep it that way. For long classical music listening sessions I use the direct balanced connections with CF, it seems like I can hear more without a preamp. If I need an input selector, or for using my small T class amp that I connected the USP-1 tape output, I switch to RCA input using two switches on the back of XPA-2. In one of the threads I read that it might be a problem: apparently the balanced/unbalanced switches were not designed for frequent use. I switch a couple of times a week. Could it be a real problem? Your comments will be appreciated
I don't know how the switches will hold up to frequent use. I do think you should simplify though. Get rid of the control freak, the attenuators and the USP-1. Get a XSP-1. Its less stuff in the signal path, easier to use, and better quality than the USP-1.
If money is an issue do it a year from now, or whenever. What you have works and you like the sound. A XSP-1 at some point makes sense though and you won't have to worry about the switches on the amp.
Thank you, I was thinking about XSP-1 and I am sure it will be a great addition to my system although I listened to XSP-1 comparing to USP-1 and I am not convinced I should upgrade, particularly when I removed the main problem with USP-1 which is volume control. But my main point is that I want a passive preamp path in my system as well as the active preamp. If I cannot do it with one power amp I wold rather buy XPR-2 and upgrade my system this way.