B&K Components Ref 10 A/V Preamplifier

Ref 10

User Reviews (9)

Showing 1-9 of 9  
Bill   Audio Enthusiast [Jan 20, 2000]
Strength:

Never got a good oppurtunity

Weakness:

Can't get a dependable unit

I am not happy with this product. Out of the box, no s-video or AC3. Originally wanted to streamline a little and went with AVR101 (after 3 units, with a replacement time of 1 month each) and zero response from B&K about my issues. I was assured that if I went back to separates I would be happy. Why did I want to streamline, space. So I waited for the replacement products, 6 weeks, by that time, the AVR101 was dead, PS failed. Were they WRONG!,the separates aren't any beter. As I said out of the box ref10 was NG. At a close look, it appears to be a refurb, which really has me PO'd. Too bad, I'll never know if the AV5000II is a good amp. They're going back, the search resumes.

Similar Products Used: Adcom 740
OVERALL
RATING
1
VALUE
RATING
1
Frank   Audio Enthusiast [Nov 29, 1999]
Strength:

Flexibility, Remote

Weakness:

Instructions somewhat lacking in certain areas

I bought the REF10 new for $1500.00. It replaced my ADCOM GTP600. The overall performance of the REF10 is excellent.
The Dolby Digital processing perfomed better than I expected. Movies come to life with this unit. Listeniig to music in two channel stereo or three channel hall mode is warm and enveloping. I am really impressed with the assortment of inputs & outputs. The remote control is very flexible with all the operations it can perform, it takes time to program, but it is well worth it in the end.
The only real issue I have with the REF10 is the insruction manual. Take time to play with the settings, it's the best way to figure out how to program the different zone modes to the way you would like them.
I would not hesitate to recommend this unit to anyone!


OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Mark Feist   an Audio Enthusiast [Jul 21, 1999]

I purchased the Ref 10 about 8 months ago after owning an adcom GTP 600 for the past 2 years. I wanted to have a Dolby Digital PreAmp and also make my CDs sound better. The B&K has dramatically improved all aspects of my system. Dolby Digital Movies are awesome. When I listen to Tori Amos, Pearl Jam, Dream Theater, Queen, Black Crows, the highs are natural with moderate midrange sound (possibly a little warm) and thundering bass! For the money, I have not heard a better PreAmp for my system for the money (Anything under $4000). The rest of my system consists of:
Forte Model 55 2 channel amp (main)
Adcom 535 4/3 channel amp (center and rears)
Nak. MB2 CD Player
Toshiba DVD player
Mirage 1295is Bipolar Main Speakers
Mirage MCsi Center Channel Speaker
Mirage FRx Surround Sound Speakers
MIT speaker Cable
Sony V29 Trinitron TV
Sony HiFi VCR

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
John   an Audiophile [Nov 22, 1998]

I have been useing the R10 for a couple of months now, and I have to say over all it is a very good unit. As a preamp (CD Stereo mode) it does for my system as much if not more than most preamps. As a Decoder, the DSP's are outstanding. At the sametime I purchased the R10 I also bought a DVD palyer, the Dolby Digital is impressive to say the least. I don't switch between the different DSP much but they all seem effective.
I bought this unit over the Reference 20 because the only diference is the R20 has DTS. The R10 is fully factory upgradeble to DTS, so if DTS takes off then you cah spend the extra $500.

A major plus it that this thing is built like a tank, it is heavy, look tough and feels tough nothing about this unit seems slack.

I do have a complaint, occasionally, not very often, while switching modes there is an audible "pop". Not really a problem as it is now. But when you pay $2000 for a pice of equipment like this that is not what you excpect. I expect there to be NO problems.

I reccomend givnig this unit consideration. Although because of the "popping" I can't give it a perfect score.

SYSTEM: (all to be reviewed soon)

KEF Reference Two
KEF 100 (center)
Rega Planet
Pioneer DVD
B&K ST1400 Series II (Two Channel Amp)
B&K ST 1430 Series II (Three Channel Amp)
Tera Labs Interconnects & Speaker Wire

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
Mike Curtis   an Audio Enthusiast [Jun 24, 1999]

I just purchased a B & K Reference 10 preamp. It is connected to an Outlaw Audio amp, Paradigm speakers with subwoofer, Musical Fidelity E-624 CD player, RCA dish with Dolby Digital Output, 48-inch Toshiba rear projection tv, and two JVC VCR's (one S-VHS). The preamp is fairly easy to setup although the remote is a little complicated but is easy to get use to with use. A minor fault with the preamp is when changing Satellite channels I hear a pop in the surrounds. I either turn the sound down or mute the volume. I also use the analog inputs to listen to my CD player as I think it sounds better. For the money I think the preamp is a great value and sounds great with Dolby Digital and very good with music. The preamp is very flexible as it is upgradeable and has numerous inputs and outputs.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
Jeffrey Horowitz   Audio Enthusiast [Dec 10, 1999]
Strength:

Flexibility,Analog bypass,value

Weakness:

No 6 channel input

I took some time to listen to the ref 10 for a few months. I have to say I love it. This is a very versitile preamp/surround processor. I love the analog bypass,the 4ch stereo and it sounds great for dolby digital. Many inputs all with digital inputs and s-video inputs. Also 2 digital outputs(key for recording with my mini disc player). Also, software upgradeable through the RS-232 input. Did not get the ref 20 because I am not ready for DTS until it proves it has staying power. Anyway I just wanted to stress that if you are in the market for preamp/sourround processor under $2000 this is the way to go. Nothing touches it at this price!

Similar Products Used: Mrantz 9000, Parasound, and Act 3
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Charlie   an Audio Enthusiast [Aug 22, 1998]

I have owned the Ref 10 for just over a month now.I beleived then and I beleive now that it is the best pre-amp for the money.
I currently only have analog sources (Hi-Fi VCR, CD, LD), but I love what I am hearing. I compared it to the Acurus ACT-3, Marantz AV550, Rotel RTC970. The Ref 10 just is the complete package. In just stereo mode the sound from my CD player is like nothing that I heard before. My pro-logic movies have also benefitted from this upgrade. (I upgraded from a Denon receiver)
I can't wait to add that DVD player to enjoy the full benefits from this new system.
My musical taste is Peter Gabrial, Dave Matthews, etc.
I listen to some jazz and clasical, but mostly rock and pop.

If you are in the market for a AV Pre-amp for about $2,000 find your nearest B&K dealer.

My System:
B&K Ref 10 Pre-amp
B&K AV5000 Amp
Monster 850i interconnects
Paradigm Ref Studio 20 Front Speakers
Paradigm Ref cc450 Center
Bose AM-7 Rear speakers (will be replaced next year)
Definitive Technology PF15- Powered Sub
Pioneer CLD-1070 LD player
Denon DCM-340 CD player

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
Dan   an Audio Enthusiast [Aug 19, 1999]

I bought the Ref 10 about 5 weeks ago after comparison with Sony ES, Parasound's new one, and the Sunfire. I bought because of great overall flexibility (all inputs have L/R, composite, and S-video, plus 5 coax/optical digital inputs), B&K reputation, pure analog capability, and apparent build quality. So far the unit meets all expectations. Excellent sound quality. The remote is outstanding - the first "universal" remote I've liked enough to use instead of the device-specific remote. Occasional small pop when switching between sources, but no hum or buzz (I was a bit worried after reading about AVR202 receiver). I skipped the Ref 20 to save money and postpone upgrade if I ever see enough DTS available. Unit runs surprisingly warm. Very solid construction. Front panel volume control return-to-center spring is too strong. I'm still playing with the presets. I would actually rate it 4.5 because of the pop but it's more a 5 than a 4. Equipment includes Panasonic DVD120U, Sunfire Cinema Grand, Snell C/V, home-built center channel and powered sub, Kef 101 rears.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
George Kerber   Audio Enthusiast [Jul 14, 2000]
Strength:

Remote control, presets

Weakness:

D/A conversion for tape outs

To do it over again, I would not have purchased this preamp! I connect the tape output jacks to other integrated amps for use in the other rooms of my home. When my Pioneer cd player goes from play/stop or stop/play I get a loud pop in the speakers from the remote amps. There is no sound at all from the main power amp outputs in the preamp to my main room power amps, the popping is only heard on the tape output jacks. Therefore B&K is using some different signal path and D/A conversion for the tape output jacks than the main stereo outputs. I contacted B&K tech support and got a surly answer from their person that I was using the preamp wrong! I then wrote a letter to their general manager at least 4 months ago and have never received a response. They have a bug in their product and will not even discuss it. I am not impressed.

Similar Products Used: AVP1000
OVERALL
RATING
2
VALUE
RATING
3
Showing 1-9 of 9  

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