Jeff Rowland Design Group Consummate Preamplifiers

Consummate

User Reviews (5)

Showing 1-5 of 5  
Prakit   AudioPhile [Aug 31, 2004]
Strength:

Best Functionality Transparent and relax sounding

Weakness:

Lack definition from high to mid

One of the best preamp in term of functionality. You get every control you want from this linestage preamp. It sounds good enough although it slightly lacks definition in the mid. The high should be more extened. You really need to experiment with the input/output impedance to match the upstream/downstream equipments for best sound. I found it's best 10K input and 300 Ohm output. Highest input and lowest output impedance setting doesn't always yield best results as I initially thought.

Similar Products Used: Audio research LS25MkII, LS2BMkII, CJ Premier 2
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
Bob   Audiophile [Jan 19, 2001]
Strength:

Detail, Airy, soundstaging, Bass, Nice heavy remote,
plenty of Balanced & SE in's & outs.

Weakness:

None

Let me just say this is a get what you pay for preamp!
I love everything about this pre, much better than the
above mentioned pre's (And they are great) at their
price points...Marsh P2000 is 1K, it is bright, edgy,
etc, but it cost 1K!

If you can find a JR Consummate grab it, at under 3k
used it is a steal. It will be your last preamp.

Interesting to see that Thomas J. Norton who reviewed
this preamp in 1992 (Stereophile) is still using the
Consummate in his own reference system!
Seems that a man who has heard a lot more pre's than
most would not be using a older preamp unless it was
something special!!??

5 stars all the way!

Similar Products Used: Sonic Frontiers Line 2, Rogue 99, Marsh P2000 and more.
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Peter   Audiophile [Nov 30, 1999]
Strength:

Musical, Natural harmonics, good separation of multitrack recordings, very flexible

Weakness:

slight loss of detail, soundtstage width & depth compared with direct feed from DAC

I bought this second-hand together with a Jeff Rowland Model 2+BPS power amp to replace a BAT VK500 power driven directly from my DAC. I needed the flexibility of a pre-amp to integrate home theatre equipment with my audiophile set-up, and this pre is extremely flexible. It will allow independent setting of volume per input, has a good spread of balanced & unbalanced connections, a bright clear display visible across the room (which you can switch off) and remote control with a remote sensor you can position in line of sight of your listening position. Gain and input/output impdeance are selectable with jumpers inside the unit. Phase and mono settings are also available. The matching phono stage is highly adjustable with a couple of variable resistors controlling the input, or else separate higher-quality fixed ones (more fiddly) plus it will input balanced signals as well as output them, with or without inverted phase. So flexibility is a great advantage with this kit.

Sound is very musical, reasonably neutral although the treble could do with being a bit more extended and "airy". There are definite losses compared with the DAC (a dCS Elgar & Purcell) driving the power amp directly, particularly in terms of low-level detail and soundstaging. Paradoxically I prefer the sound with the pre in circuit, it's a bit less matter-of-fact and more musical than without. The acoustics in my listening room are pretty poor (some Tube Traps are on the cards) so the loss of detail & soundtsage is unimportant to me, besides which you have to listen very carefully to notice. Together with the Model 2 the midrange is harmonic, natural, not as good as I've heard with some very expensive valve equipment, but close enough to make me very happy. It can separate the threads of multitrack recordings into components and give each its own weight and tone, without overwhelming. It sounds good straight out of the box but needs extended warming up to get the n'th degree out of it.

So I'll give the Consummate five stars for value on the grounds of flexibility, and four stars for sound since I know it's possible to do better (but at much greater cost!).

Similar Products Used: BAT VK3i, VK5i
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Michael   Audio Enthusiast [Jan 11, 2002]
Strength:

Absolutely neutral.

Weakness:

None

This preamplifier is simply the best I've ever heard. It adds nothing to the sound but also not a single detail is lost.

The amplification is made by discrete resistors in 200 different values. I can't imagine how this can be made in a better way.

If you can get one: Buy it, there is nothing better!

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Francis   Audiophile [Apr 28, 2001]
Strength:

Exceptional sound quality

Weakness:

No balanced line inputs for CD.

This is a truely classic pre-amp. I know of no other pre-amp that is as good for the price.

It's key qualities... very natual sound, uncoloured, very muscical, very involving/exciting, open, big sound stage, very quiet (space around every instrument), equally suburb playing classical or rock/Jazz.

Second hand, they are rare... but well worth finding out!

Best compling is with a JR Model 1 amp.

However, if you can afford to pay more and you want balanced line inputs and better MC phono... then JR Consumate is better, but you may need to upgrade to JR Model 5 amp too!


Similar Products Used: Coherence II and Consumate III (owned), various (listened)
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Showing 1-5 of 5  

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