B&W 685 and Aperion 6T speakers
Transparent speaker cables (entry level)
Analysis Plus Blue Oval interconnects
Room is 16x16x9 give or take all carpet with very little furniture and a drumset
Very neutral, Alice in Chains, Iron Maiden, Yes, Zappa or Black Sabbath and other bands with lots of distorted guitar and bass lines don't sound bright or grainy. Like their latest 4 titles, Maiden's The Final Frontier includes 3 guitars which sometimes do synchronized solos. In other amps like Rotel and Cambridge Audio, the music was a little too much at high levels..a bit harsh. The Creek cruises by, just making the music get louder but maintaining the detail, the color and the instrument placing. I normally listen at high levels when I play and at low levels when I read. The Creek was equally impressive on both ends with Rock music. The latest Alice in Chains album is a tough test for amps. I've taking it to my dealer to try it with Ayre, ARC, McIntosh and other more expensive brands and let me tell you that the Creek comes very close, about 90%-95% to the musical enjoyment. The new Audio Research integrated was better, but not 3 times better.
The bass is tight and musical, not boomy, not weak. Just right. AC/DC, country music and even older Jazz from Blackey, Davis, Cobbham etc. sounded very defined without taking too much attention. I love an amp that can effectively distinguish between the tight, well eq'd bass from country music vs. the open bass from Erskine and other jazz drummers which let the sustain and pure wood comes across their bass notes. I prefer the bass drum without any eq, with all of its overtones. The Creek conveys that nuance and I love it. I would say it is a good as Bryston bass, but it is better than anything below $1500 that I've heard.
The midrange is clear and it just dissapears. Diana Krall's unique voice is depicted as such, Rob Halford screaming and singing comes across exactly as I remember from my old Sansui amps from the 80's and King Crimson's pace and timing is very enjoyable.
The highs are what I enjoy the most. The have a certain kick to them which communicate character. They are not as relaxed as Arcam or Nad, more detailed and cool, but not as piercy as other low end integrates. I tried Nine Inch Nails and some classical music and the treble responded very well. Specially at high volumes.
Led Zeppelin's original I-IV records weren't recorded particularly well, to me the music is outstanding but the sound was never great. This amp highlights that - recordings that are less than par will sound as such and good recordings will be addictive; for example: Martina McBride's Emotion, any Hendrix, Maiden's Powersalve, any Jeff Beck's and any Floyd after Atom Heart Mother.
The am[p stays cool and it looks very classy and simple (I have the black version) It matches well with different speakers so I'm curious about the company's own EPOS.
The timing, soundstage and other technical attributes are probably good but I was never able to get their relevance since I move around when I listen to music and precise imaging is irrelevant to me. Also, that is better to describe the speaker.
This amp is linear, and that's what i like most..it sounds composed and it controls the music all the way up to 105 db's or so.
It took a while to break, maybe 150 hours
Gotta run, but I'll ad more later