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Macspur's picture
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RE: Croft Integrated

davedotco wrote:

Came across the Integrated (basic line level) a week or two ago. 

Easily my favourite sub £1000 amplifier and better than most at a lot more money. Very basic facilities, but if you can live with that It really puts down a marker for sound quality.

 

I'll second that.  As you say very basic, but a top amp... the only thing I didn't like was the duel volume pots.

Mac

www.macsmusic.blogbubble.net 

Electrocompaniet EMC1UP, Accuphase E350, Harbeth SHL5 Siltech 25th anniversary 33i XLR, Auditorium 23 SC, HiFi Racks Podium Reference rack.

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RE: Croft Integrated

Macspur wrote:

davedotco wrote:

Came across the Integrated (basic line level) a week or two ago. 

Easily my favourite sub £1000 amplifier and better than most at a lot more money. Very basic facilities, but if you can live with that It really puts down a marker for sound quality.

 

I'll second that.  As you say very basic, but a top amp... the only thing I didn't like was the duel volume pots.

Mac

www.macsmusic.blogbubble.net 

I have on a number of occasions discussed my 'ideal' £2k system and explained at some length why I think the active option (ADM9s, Adam Artist6) would suit me best.

The main reason for this was that I found a character about budget passive systems that I really did not like, difficult to describe but perhaps best described as a lack of control. On an admittedly short listen, I found the Croft brought out the natural timbre or body of the music without in any way sounding warm itself, a quality I normally inly associate with more expensive amplifiers.

Very impressive I thought. Given that my '£2k system needs to include a Sonos Connect, a dac (probably), amplifier and speakers it is perhaps a touch expensive to qualify but it brought me closer to what I was looking for than anything else I have heard.

The idea of driving it from a Connect (external dac or not) works well for me, the twin gain controls set to the maximun level I would use in 'normal' use and the volume on the Connect being used for everyday attenuation. Not quite viable with a Dac, but certainly possible without...... :cheer:

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RE: Croft Integrated

I quite liked this amp when I heard it a while back, though unfortunately it was paired with some pretty dire speakers. I also heard a Croft pre/power combo that was a notch or two better. Can't remember the models.

Dave, I think you could get pretty close to £2K if you struck lucky with a budget DAC. Are you averse to buying second hand? I'd have thought that with your long experience as a dealer you'd feel pretty confident about picking up something sound. 

Matt

This train … carries saints and sinners / This train … carries losers and winners / This train … carries whores and gamblers / This train … carries lost souls.

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RE: Croft Integrated

I still love my 25 pre and & 7 series power. I initially bought the pre as line level only because i already had the separate RIAA and had it built with just one volume pot. 

In the end i sold the RIAA and had Glenn fit the phono stage into the pre and to me it sounded even better! I'm going to upgrade the pre to the R version when funds allow. 

All in all I love my Croft gear and well worth an audition.

Cheers, Ed

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Mmm . . . I still have my

Mmm . . . I still have my Croft integrated up stairs, should have sold it but could not bear to let it go. Almost 12 months ago, I moved on to a full blown valve amp KT88 and all that . . . The move has been a journey of pleasure, dismay and frustration.

In frustration, I'm seriously considering doing a 180 degree! Glen will upgrade my intigrated to as far as is possible for not to much money. I will then do a direct A/B comparison, see just how far, if any, the 'full valve' jobby is ahead?

This has all been brought about by the constant upgrading of the TT, to a point where I'm not sure what needs to be done next. One is very mindful of just how obliging the basic Croft was in the early days of the TT upgrades, it simply opened the window so that I could hear the 'music', have I done it an injustice? The TT is a much more sophisticated performer these days, the old chestnut, 'quality in quality out' as put out by Linn, still holds true in my book.

I also have a good friend in the trade who has the full range of Croft amps, I'm even considering a total system revamp??? Even the 23 year old speakers may come in for scrutiny? . . . as I say, 180 . . . !?

CJSF

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RE: Croft Integrated

matt49 wrote:

I quite liked this amp when I heard it a while back, though unfortunately it was paired with some pretty dire speakers. I also heard a Croft pre/power combo that was a notch or two better. Can't remember the models.

Dave, I think you could get pretty close to £2K if you struck lucky with a budget DAC. Are you averse to buying second hand? I'd have thought that with your long experience as a dealer you'd feel pretty confident about picking up something sound. 

Matt

Evening Matt, how's the tooth..... :mad:

The line level integrated is 'supposed' to be pretty close to the basic pre-power, not heard either of the pre-powers in recent times though.

The sound had that quality about it, you know the thing I have talked about the before, the qualty of the Electros, the Sugden and a handful of others. Not as explicitly so as some of the more expensive examples but exceptional for the money, and a hell of a lot more interesting than anything else for similar or less money.

Bump the budget up to £2500-3000 or so and it is very possible, modded Connect, V-Dac, Croft and maybe even a pair of Venere 1.5s. Getting interesting but also pushing the budget. 

Anyway this system remains largely academic, Mrs DDC's whale watching expedition is still on for early march, so no budget.

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RE: Mmm . . . I still have my

CJSF wrote:
Mmm . . . I still have my Croft integrated up stairs, should have sold it but could not bear to let it go. Almost 12 months ago, I moved on to a full blown valve amp KT88 and all that . . . The move has been a journey of pleasure, dismay and frustration. In frustration, I'm seriously considering doing a 180 degree! Glen will upgrade my intigrated to as far as is possible for not to much money. I will then do a direct A/B comparison, see just how far, if any, the 'full valve' jobby is ahead? This has all been brought about by the constant upgrading of the TT, to a point where I'm not sure what needs to be done next. One is very mindful of just how obliging the basic Croft was in the early days of the TT upgrades, it simply opened the window so that I could hear the 'music', have I done it an injustice? The TT is a much more sophisticated performer these days, the old chestnut, 'quality in quality out' as put out by Linn, still holds true in my book. I also have a good friend in the trade who has the full range of Croft amps, I'm even considering a total system revamp??? Even the 23 year old speakers may come in for scrutiny? . . . as I say, 180 . . . !? CJSF

 

Hi CJ

It would be interesting to hear your thoughts on the Croft again compared to your valve integrated.........go on you know you want to!  Wink

keep us posted

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RE: Mmm . . . I still have my

edplaysdrums42 wrote:

CJSF wrote:
Mmm . . . I still have my Croft integrated up stairs, should have sold it but could not bear to let it go. Almost 12 months ago, I moved on to a full blown valve amp KT88 and all that . . . The move has been a journey of pleasure, dismay and frustration. In frustration, I'm seriously considering doing a 180 degree! Glen will upgrade my intigrated to as far as is possible for not to much money. I will then do a direct A/B comparison, see just how far, if any, the 'full valve' jobby is ahead? This has all been brought about by the constant upgrading of the TT, to a point where I'm not sure what needs to be done next. One is very mindful of just how obliging the basic Croft was in the early days of the TT upgrades, it simply opened the window so that I could hear the 'music', have I done it an injustice? The TT is a much more sophisticated performer these days, the old chestnut, 'quality in quality out' as put out by Linn, still holds true in my book. I also have a good friend in the trade who has the full range of Croft amps, I'm even considering a total system revamp??? Even the 23 year old speakers may come in for scrutiny? . . . as I say, 180 . . . !? CJSF

 

Hi CJ

It would be interesting to hear your thoughts on the Croft again compared to your valve integrated.........go on you know you want to!  Wink

keep us posted

Me too....... :bounce:

Untill fairly recently I have been living with a rather exotically priced (but suberbly built and voiced) beauty utilising EL34s. One of those valve amplifiers that really does not sound like valves, and not remotely like transistors either. Sadly in storage and I miss it.

Be nice to hear your thoughts.....

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RE: Croft Integrated

davedotco wrote:

Evening Matt, how's the tooth..... :mad:

The line level integrated is 'supposed' to be pretty close to the basic pre-power, not heard either of the pre-powers in recent times though.

The sound had that quality about it, you know the thing I have talked about the before, the qualty of the Electros, the Sugden and a handful of others. Not as explicitly so as some of the more expensive examples but exceptional for the money, and a hell of a lot more interesting than anything else for similar or less money.

Bump the budget up to £2500-3000 or so and it is very possible, modded Connect, V-Dac, Croft and maybe even a pair of Venere 1.5s. Getting interesting but also pushing the budget. 

Anyway this system remains largely academic, Mrs DDC's whale watching expedition is still on for early march, so no budget.

(With apologies for going off topic)

Thanks, Dave, the tooth (or lack thereof) is feeling much better today.

Interesting you should mention Sugden. I've just bought a second-hand A21a. Recently serviced by Sugden, or so I'm told. It should arrive early next week. This will be going to the holiday cottage. 

Segueing back onto topic: second-hand Crofts do occasionally appear on PFM and the 'Wam. Presumably a full service by His Glennness wouldn't be outrageously expensive.

:cheers:

Matt

This train … carries saints and sinners / This train … carries losers and winners / This train … carries whores and gamblers / This train … carries lost souls.

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RE: Croft Integrated

matt49 wrote:

davedotco wrote:

Evening Matt, how's the tooth..... :mad:

The line level integrated is 'supposed' to be pretty close to the basic pre-power, not heard either of the pre-powers in recent times though.

The sound had that quality about it, you know the thing I have talked about the before, the qualty of the Electros, the Sugden and a handful of others. Not as explicitly so as some of the more expensive examples but exceptional for the money, and a hell of a lot more interesting than anything else for similar or less money.

Bump the budget up to £2500-3000 or so and it is very possible, modded Connect, V-Dac, Croft and maybe even a pair of Venere 1.5s. Getting interesting but also pushing the budget. 

Anyway this system remains largely academic, Mrs DDC's whale watching expedition is still on for early march, so no budget.

(With apologies for going off topic)

Thanks, Dave, the tooth (or lack thereof) is feeling much better today.

Interesting you should mention Sugden. I've just bought a second-hand A21a. Recently serviced by Sugden, or so I'm told. It should arrive early next week. This will be going to the holiday cottage. 

Segueing back onto topic: second-hand Crofts do occasionally appear on PFM and the 'Wam. Presumably a full service by His Glennness wouldn't be outrageously expensive.

:cheers:

Matt

Nice thoughts, but when I said no budget, I meant no budget.

This is a serious trip, Mrs DDC is having to dig deep into her Gucci to pull this one off and I'm not going to rock the boat.

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RE: Croft Integrated

edplaysdrums42 wrote:

I still love my 25 pre and & 7 series power. I initially bought the pre as line level only because i already had the separate RIAA and had it built with just one volume pot. 

In the end i sold the RIAA and had Glenn fit the phono stage into the pre and to me it sounded even better! I'm going to upgrade the pre to the R version when funds allow. 

All in all I love my Croft gear and well worth an audition.

Cheers, Ed

Hi Ed,

Glad you're still enjoying your set up so much... hear good things about the R series.

Mac

www.macsmusic.blogbubble.net

Electrocompaniet EMC1UP, Accuphase E350, Harbeth SHL5 Siltech 25th anniversary 33i XLR, Auditorium 23 SC, HiFi Racks Podium Reference rack.

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RE: Mmm . . . I still have my

CJSF wrote:
Mmm . . . I still have my Croft integrated up stairs, should have sold it but could not bear to let it go. Almost 12 months ago, I moved on to a full blown valve amp KT88 and all that . . . The move has been a journey of pleasure, dismay and frustration. In frustration, I'm seriously considering doing a 180 degree! Glen will upgrade my intigrated to as far as is possible for not to much money. I will then do a direct A/B comparison, see just how far, if any, the 'full valve' jobby is ahead? This has all been brought about by the constant upgrading of the TT, to a point where I'm not sure what needs to be done next. One is very mindful of just how obliging the basic Croft was in the early days of the TT upgrades, it simply opened the window so that I could hear the 'music', have I done it an injustice? The TT is a much more sophisticated performer these days, the old chestnut, 'quality in quality out' as put out by Linn, still holds true in my book. I also have a good friend in the trade who has the full range of Croft amps, I'm even considering a total system revamp??? Even the 23 year old speakers may come in for scrutiny? . . . as I say, 180 . . . !? CJSF

Hi CJ,

A whole revamp hey!  Looking forward to following your adventure as ever.

Mac

www.macsmusic.blogbubble.net

Electrocompaniet EMC1UP, Accuphase E350, Harbeth SHL5 Siltech 25th anniversary 33i XLR, Auditorium 23 SC, HiFi Racks Podium Reference rack.

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RE: Croft Integrated

Macspur wrote:

edplaysdrums42 wrote:

I still love my 25 pre and & 7 series power. I initially bought the pre as line level only because i already had the separate RIAA and had it built with just one volume pot. 

In the end i sold the RIAA and had Glenn fit the phono stage into the pre and to me it sounded even better! I'm going to upgrade the pre to the R version when funds allow. 

All in all I love my Croft gear and well worth an audition.

Cheers, Ed

Hi Ed,

Glad you're still enjoying your set up so much... hear good things about the R series.

Mac

www.macsmusic.blogbubble.net

 

Hi Macspur, when I say a whole revamp, thats 'electronics', no more turn table games, as I say, may be the speakers as well?

Problem is I know how it all sounds, speakers, cables, interconects, to me these, plus the TT are the heart of my system, my window od sound.  So first see what the amp is doing, see where a change here will point.

There is an issue with valves for me, they change with time, the latest valve I changed were great after 50 hours, now as I push well past that point they are changing again, not to my liking..  So then does one  start chasing ones tail again?  I have a number of options by going back to previous valves, becomes mix-and-match, I never wanted to do the 'rolling' (changing) in the first place . . . curiosity and all that, wanting the best?  I'm begining to see it as 'differant'?

The Croft set up means the delicate 'signal in' is still handaled to best advantage by valves, there is less gain in 'rolling them' . . . so why bother?  The output mosfet, either works or it dont!  Purists will raise hands in horror, I even think this way with doubts in my 'open mind'.  However, I'm fedup with all this pluging and unpluging, taking a gamble if a particulare valve will work better and being asked a kings ransom to take the gamble with no redress.

 . . . ??? its time to re think, dust off the Croft and see where we have been . . .  Wink  All I want to do is relax and listen to music.

CJSF

 

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RE: Croft Integrated

Even though I've never been down the valve path, I fully appreciate where you're coming from.  It was exactly what you're experiencing always deterred me.

Sounds like you've got the TT side of things nicely settled so no point in any more tampering with that.

Just keep us updated

on how things go.

As your a chap of eclectic taste, feel free to drop into my blog and see if there's anything that takes your fancy... it's free to register and use thereafter.

Mac

www.macsmusic.blogbubble.net

Electrocompaniet EMC1UP, Accuphase E350, Harbeth SHL5 Siltech 25th anniversary 33i XLR, Auditorium 23 SC, HiFi Racks Podium Reference rack.

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Here we go, Friday afternoon,

Here we go, Friday afternoon, quiet, no appointments or things to do today, tomorrow or Sunday.

Set to and go back on all the valve changes I have made, mix a few up that I have not tried and get the Croft down to see how far one has come, is it better or just different?

CJSF

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