LINN Kolektor Preamplifiers

Kolektor

Ten clear solid-state paths for music. Micro-processor control of multiple inputs and RS232 connectability.

User Reviews (16)

Showing 1-10 of 16  
Mr. Zdur   AudioPhile [Feb 13, 2012]

This preamp is an outstanding value in today's money. I keep on thinking of upgrading to to the Wakonda or the Kairn because it sounds so good; but each of the alternatives have their drawbacks and finding the top model of them is very difficult. The earlier circular brilliant power supplies are problematic and the Kolektor has no such issues. for around $400 for one in great condition with a remote, it is a great deal.

I got hardcore into Linn recently. I started with Tukans and soon bought 2 pairs of amps and the Kolektor after chasing heavy extruded aluminum macho components. once I heard my LK85 beat my Class A Threshold amp I knew this kit was the real deal.

I use this pre in my second system with my computer and an Apogee duet + a beogram TX with MMC 2 cart for a turntable. I play the pre into a pair of Linn 5105s running aktiv Tukans. I use this setup for listening and studio work. Resolution is very high with this aktiv system and it can't really be compared with a passive system.

My main system is better sounding, but this one has low fatigue and is a joy to listen to.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
GordonT   AudioPhile [Jul 17, 2005]
Strength:

Smooth sound, three outputs for tri-amp, 10 inputs, phono input for vinyl lover

Weakness:

LCD displays funny alphabets

This is an excellent quality preamp from LINN. After auditioning it for few months, I felt in love with this amp so much that I want to have LINN products to replace all my audio components in my system. LINN has long been recognized as one of the major high-end audio equipments producers. Make no mistake, the Kolektor one the best pre-amp available in the today market.

Similar Products Used: Classe, Channel Island
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
srplus   AudioPhile [Mar 14, 2005]
Strength:

Price and versatility

Weakness:

Phonostage

For its price an excellent piece of equipment which benefits from, or requires, excellent sources such as the sondek turntable or at minimum the ikemi cd player. A cheap upgrade (approx 200 dlrs) is a rebuilt lk1 amp where all except for the RIIA ha been shut down (the RIIA is still excellent despite the age of the design, especially considering it´s´price as a second hand commodity). The quality of the inbuilt phonostage is debatable but OK. A separate RIIA also allows for MC to be used. The preamp has also grown with improvements such as upgraded CD and improved turntable or upgrade to Linn silver interconnects. The preamp is also able to drive a poweramp situated as far away as up to 10 meters (according to Linn). Works fine for me with poweramp situated 6 meters away, between speakers.

Similar Products Used: Edison tube preamps, Linn Intek
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
michael   AudioPhile [Dec 18, 2003]
Strength:

Well built, compact size, simple design, extreme functionality, remembering volume levels for each source, volume fad in / out when switching sources, tone controls for balancing the recording quality of many CD's

Weakness:

None

I just purchased the Linn Kolektor / LK140 combination to replace my beloved 15 year old Linn LK280 / LK1 rig. Have no fear, the latter gear is still going strong and is a great home office enhancement. Twenty years ago I bought into the "Linn For Life" benefit and have never looked back. Moreover, Linn really takes care of their customers which is the best part of their value proposition. Without question, Linn has made remarkable advancements in their entry level gear. The LK140 and Kolektor sound absolutely wonderful together. Clear, crisp, clean and powerful. I really could not be happier. My other equipment includes a Linn Genki, LP12 / Basik / K9, Quad FM4 tuner, Nakamichi CR-3A tape deck and Thiel CS2 speakers. I've now come to realize that the Thiel CS2's were slightly underpowered with the LK280 but not anymore. My thought of replacing them with Linn speakers have vanished since they have never sounded better since being driven by the LK140 / Kolektor. I'm hearing things I never heard before. It's marvelous! I'm a Linnie for life!

Similar Products Used: Linn LK280 / LK1
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Ola Nyberg   Audio Enthusiast [Aug 29, 2002]
Strength:

Great sound, loads of inputs, packed with features and no potentiometers that can start making noise.

In my previous review (posted over a year ago), I stated that the Kolektor doesn't have a tape-loop. This is not true, I had misunderstood the meaning of the term. There is a "tape out" output, so there is a tape-loop. However, there is no listen-record switch. Since last year, I have replaced the power amp (from Rotel RB-991 to ADCOM GFA-585) and the CD player (from ARCAM CD72 to Sony CDP-XB740, believe it or not), but the Kolektor remains in my system. Still love it.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Ali   Audio Enthusiast [Jun 29, 2002]
Strength:

Easy to use, flexible, open sound

Weakness:

Poor interconnects, lack of attack

Last year I decided to treat myself and upgrade my Mission Cyrus amp and Marantz 67SE MKII CD with a LINN Genki/Kolektor/LK140 combination. It sounded great in the shop but when I got it home I was underwhelmed. It was better than my old system, but not much. Did it need "running in"? Were my venerable Mission 753S speakers or QED Silver Aniversary Biwire speaker cables the problem? Eventually, I replaced the LINN interconnects with VAN DEN HUL 102 MKIII Hybrid. What a difference! Suddenly there was detail and stereo depth not heard before. If you like the LINNs and want to get the most out of them, you certainly need to use decent interconnects between CD and pre-amp and pre-amp and power amp.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
Jake Bach   Audio Enthusiast [Apr 22, 2002]
Strength:

Controls, custom user options, great control, very usefull bass and treble controls.

Weakness:

Remote not very handy, otherwise none at this prizerange

The Kolektor is a very strange unit with lots of custom user options, a great discrete design and, when used with other Linn equipment, very good sound. Since there are no moving parts, this unit will function perfectly for many years to come, and there are certainly enough inputs to expand your system in the future. Also the MM Phono input is very good, i´ve tried it with the Linn LP12 and K18II, and it sounded just great. Actually, i had the opportunity to compare the Kolektor directly to my old Rotel RSP-966 Surround preamp together with a Rotel RB-980 Poweramp, and to my surprise, the Linn was not nearly as musical as the Rotel, but the bass was clearly better and more controlled. When the RB-980 was removed and the Linn LK85 power amp put in, it all changed. What i am trying to say is, that Linn sounds best together with other Linn equipment. When doing so, there is not much that comes close to it, perhaps the Kairn preamp from Linn, but it has a much higher price.

Similar Products Used: Linn LK1, Linn LK280, Linn LK85, Linn Kairn, Rotel RSP-966
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Romeo Conte   Audio Enthusiast [Mar 23, 2000]
Strength:

Superbly user friendly,excellent sound,remote control

Weakness:

I can't think of any!

I've been quite critical in the past about some of Linn's substantial price rises so it was quite a pleasant surprise when I had a demonstration of the Kolector/LK140 pre-power amp.This pre-amp has to be one of THE Hi-Fi bargains of the moment.A 10 Input(inc. mm phono),fully remote controlled unit with, wait for it,TONE CONTROLS! Having upgraded from a Naim Nait 3 the sound quality from my LP12, Lingo,Cirkus,Akito,K9 front end & Royd Abbot Speakers has improved in every aspect. Detailed,punchy & with so much grip I think I've found an amplifier I can be happy with for a very long time!

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Ola Nyberg   Audio Enthusiast [Mar 29, 2001]
Strength:

Transparent sound, lots of inputs, no potentiometers, ease of use

Weakness:

No tape loop, no listen/record switch

I am not really a fan of Linn products, but when I set out to find a good pre-amp that didn't cost a fortune, I fell in love with the Kolektor. My pre-amp had to have a phono stage, preferrably tone controls, and lots of inputs for future use. I didn't want any potentiometers, so my choices were rather limited.

I didn't care about so called "balanced" inputs or outputs, that's just a big hype and scam in order to squeeze even more money out of us poor audio enthousiasts. "Balanced" connections are often not very balanced since the electronics that do the conversion between "balanced" and "unbalanced" is crap anyway. And the only time you would need balanced connections is when you have really long cables, such as in a studio environment. Otherwise, in normal home use, you will ususally get worse sound with "balanced" connections... The Kolektor has only standard RCA connectors, great!!!

I used to have a very nice integrated Accuphase E-203 from 1980. However, its potentiometers started making noises all the time (even when I had them fixed by a professional), the tone and balance controls made noise too. I then set out to find a pre-amp - power amp combination to replace the E-203. I didn't want any potentiometers (no noise please!), and the Kolektor was the only amp I could find that didn't have any. I often wonder why there must be so many buttons, knobs and potentiometers on an amp...? If we can control the volume of the TV-set without potentiometers, why can't we with an amp? It must be a traditional thing.

Anyway, the Kolektor has everything you want:
Phono stage
10 inputs (configurable)
3 outputs
1 tape out
Great remote control

apart from:
tape loop
listen/record switch
but I can live with that.

The Kolektor is like a small computer that you can program, so it's very flexible. You can configure which input you want for CD, tuner, etc. The Kolektor can also remember settings such as volume, balance, bass and treble for each input. I don't use it, but it's there. There is a great mute function too. There are lots of options that you can program (behaviour in different cases), but I haven't really bothered.

The best thing about it is the clean design and the lack of potentiometers. Wonderful "digital" volume control from 0 to 100. The display is simple and clear, love it.

As for the sound, I don't really know how it compares to other pre-amps, but I trust Linn and I think it sounds superbly in my system. I guess it does its job and gets out of the way.

You may find this funny, but I use it with a Rotel RB-991 power amp (2X200). It's a beauty and the beast combination that works great for my Infinity Kappa 90 speakers. Linn don't really have any big amps, and I simply won't cough up the ridiculous money they want for the Klout. The Rotel RB-991 (got it for $800) is a great amp, I really don't think the Klout would sound that much better. And as previously stated, I'm not a Linn fan anyway, but I'm getting there...

I managed not to fall for the interconnect scam either, and invested in a pair of Cambridge Pacific cables ($35) that sound great.

I even got an unforeseen bonus: The Kolektor remote control works with my Arcam DIVA CD72! Great! One remote less to keep track of.

I strongly recommend this pre-amp. Actually, I can't really see any reason why you would buy another pre-amp, unless you refuse to buy Linn products because of the ridiculous foot-tapping ads etc. It's great value for money. But don't open the box, because then you'll realize that it's about 95% air, but that goes for all pre-amps.....

Similar Products Used: None
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Jerry   Audiophile [Oct 04, 2000]
Strength:

Transparency, detail, focus

Weakness:

Too cheap for the sound and facilities on offer !
A little challenged for tonal color and soundstage, maybe.
Just maybe.

I confess to being confused by the little, low cost Kolektor.

It substantially betters all of the above listed audiophile-rave pre-amps.
Perhaps it is a little "grey/washed out" in tone.
Perhaps it is a little 2 dimensional.
Perhaps.

Bargain of the year/decade/century ?

I happily use it with ($15,000) Avantgarde Uno speakers, ($15,000) Jadis JA80 monoblock amps and the latest upsampling digital gear from Perpetual Technology.

Similar Products Used: Rowland Consummate, Audio Research SP11/2; Musical Fidelity F22, Audio Synthesis Passion 8
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Showing 1-10 of 16  

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