CR Developments Romulus Integrated Amplifiers

5/5 (1 Reviews)

Product Description

  • Power Output: 30 Watts RMS
  • Response: 20Hz-25KHz 2dB
  • Number of Inputs: 5
  • Load Impedance: 8 Ohms

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User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by douglawson_2000 a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: April 12, 2006

Bottom Line:   
I purchased this amp from Carl at USA HIFI, it was a demo unit with very few hours on it, not even broken in, I couldn’t resist.

The Romulus has a real classic look to it. The tubes are neatly arranged across the top of the unit, its gloss black and polished stainless steel finish with large gold knobs puts me in mind of the old McIntosh amps, but with better symmetry and gold knobs. The amp is self-biasing. The tube complement features three 12AX7s, two 12AU7s and, four 6L6GCs running in push-pull to deliver 30 watts per side. RCA line-level inputs are marked upside down for easy reading when peering over the top to connect your sources. The Romulus also has pre-out RCAs and a ground lift switch.

I use Klipsch Heresy’s for my main speakers. Many people would say these speakers have a harsh sound. One could respond that that would be so only with a harsh sounding amp. These speakers are clear, not harsh. But in fact, I'd have to agree that these speakers probably have a forward, even bright character, but without some spark of excitement in the system music can sound a little distant and lacking in sparkle. This sonic character is provided rather effectively by the Heresy’s which, while they sound a bit forward with solid state amps, they are well suited to the Romulus.

The Romulus fires up right away and sounds good in less than 15 seconds. I could detect no hum or hiss even when cranking the dial way past the point I would ever play music at. So, how does the music sound? I would describe the sound as warm, but not artificially so. Music just seemed to flow into the room with a warm, engaging and very enjoyable sound. Female vocals sound very and natural with no excess of glow or gooey coloration sometimes associated with the “tube” sound. There is never a hint of edge or glare in the higher frequencies. Bass is tight and focused with no booming or muddy vagueness. Sound stage and imaging is holographic, both in width and in depth. The feeling of the acoustic space is prevalent in all recordings. I can hear more of the musical timing as well as the character of instruments than I ever heard from my well respected Rotel amps. However, a comparison between the Romulus and any Rotel amp would not be fair. They simply do not play in the same league.

Vinyl LP playback via a CR Woodham phono preamp is startling as it is fascinating in its harmonic richness, presence, and freshness of sound. The combination of the Woodham pre and the Romulus quietly demonstrate superiority of analog simplicity. In fact, I have not listened to my CD player since hearing vinyl playback through the Romulus. My $300.00 turntable has a magic to its sound that is just not present when I play my CD player (that lists for $2500.00). It is now clear where I should invest my money. Sorry Carl, the CD player is coming back; you can upgrade my turntable instead.

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Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   2006

Price Paid:    $2500.00

Purchased At:   USA HIFI

Reviews 1 - 1 (1 Reviews Total)

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