BEZ Q4B preamp

Here we have a very sweet tubed preamp by BEZ. I’ve been a fan of BEZ for a long time; my first and so far favorite 300B amplifier was a BEZ machine, hand made by Edmund Lam in Hong Kong. I’m not sure where exactly and by whom the current fleet of BEZ products are being made, but this preamp looks and feels just like my old BEZ amp, and I would think it dates to the same time period, probably the late 1990s to early 2000’s.

This is an industrial beauty if ever there was one. No nonsense, this preamp is heavy gauge stainless steel and built like a tank. It uses a pair of 6SN7 for gain, always a good choice, its tube rectified by the 5Z4P and it even offers tube regulation, a wonderful feature not found very often, and especially not at this price point. With three inputs, this has expandability for most needs. The knobs are large and robust, the connectors are of good quality, it has what appear to be quality chokes in the power supply and the power transformer itself is user-switchable between 115 and 220 volts. I believe this is point to point wired but I did not open it up to check. In short, this has everything it needs to be a quality performer.

Sound wise this does not disappoint. It has a decent amount of gain but is not overkill. The preamp adds a bit of warmth and sparkle, and does not do anything wrong. The sound signature can be tailored pretty easily with the user’s selection of 6SN7, and I liked my Toshiba long plate tubes here as well as the Sylvania “Bad Boys”. The tube regulators glow a nice purple when the amp is running and that is always attractive. Although the rectifier is an unusual choice I would not be surprised to find that there are suitable alternatives. I have not seen many of these preamps for sale on the used market, in fact besides the unit I purchased I have only seen one other and that was many years ago. So, they may not come up often (which is a good sign actually) but if one does I think you will be happy with it. This is a well-designed, very functional piece and with its solid build quality it makes a great choice for a budget friendly tube addition to any system.

The side mounted inputs were a bit strange, although this does place them closest to the amplification tubes, so in that way it makes sense. It made for an awkward setup in my rig though, and I can see this being a negative factor overall.

Good solid RCA plugs, very secure. This is a place where a lot of gear falls down, but BEZ got it right. A few extra pennies spent on parts makes a big difference.

One beef with this preamp is the stepped attenuator. I always prefer the feel of a smooth volume control. Somehow with stepped attenuators the “right” volume is always somewhere in between for me.

Nice clean lines.