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C-1 is better imho, has more adjustments, the ct-7 has a remote and a tuner. 
 

if you spin vinyl, the c-1 has a better phono section.
 

if you need a unit with built in tuner, I would go with the ct-7.

 

barry

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I agree with @BarryG

 

I have both.  The CT-7 is, IMHO, the best of the Preamp-Tuners Carver produced. The remote is hard to find, but aftermarkets remotes are available.

 

Besides the better phono section (which includes 2 phono - MM and MC), the C-1 also supports an external processor input (nice feature if you use an EQ or Tube Buffer).

 

They both support 2 tape decks and Sonic Holography.

 

There are lots upgrades available for the C-1; most notable are the BillD mod and Gundry filter.  While I suppose the CT-7 can be upgraded, I've never heard or seen any.  On the plus side for the C-1, its a very simple preamp, which translates into reliability.

 

My opinion, you wouldn't go wrong with either preamp. As far as what to look for, look for cosmetic issues. Aftermarket faceplates are available for the C-1, but not the the CT-7. If the unit is missing switches or buttons, you'll be looking on eBay for used parts, which are aways questionable. 

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@Wilkic65 With all the research that you will do and reading the information, it will also come down to what look do you want to have. One of the aftermarket add ons for the C1 is the black faceplate but usually on eBay are around an additional 100 doll hairs. Actually you can find both pre amps in both colors. And like I said today at work, the remotes are hard to find and costly if you do find one. 

 

The remote add ons for the C1 only control the volume whereas the CT7 has more functionality. Its a crap shoot man. I have both and I like both. ~^

 

Sounds to me if you like vinyl then go with the C1 since you said you will more than likely use bluetooth for radio listening. 

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34 minutes ago, PMAT said:

Get both and play with them ------DUH!

 

That was my direction but eventually I stuck with the BillD C1; be aware that if either one is original, you will most likely need to have it restored...

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21 minutes ago, Charlie said:

 

That was my direction but eventually I stuck with the BillD C1; be aware that if either one is original, you will most likely need to have it restored...

 

It can be pretty expensive to top a BillD C-1. 

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18 hours ago, Sk1Bum said:

 

It can be pretty expensive to top a BillD C-1. 

 

So true; I've got tons of money invested in restored Carver preamps and I still consider the C! (BillD) to be the best of the lot...

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