Creek 5350SE integrated amplifier Measurements

Sidebar 3: Measurements

After a one-hour preconditioning period at one-third power into 8 ohms, the Creek 5350SE's internal heatsinks were too hot to touch, and I could feel a convection current of hot air rising from them. The output was in correct polarity, and the maximum voltage gain into 8 ohms was a sensible 33.8dB for line-level inputs. The phono section (internally connected to the Aux RCAs) offered another 40.5dB of gain, appropriate for MM cartridges. The phono input's impedance was 46.1k ohms, the line inputs' a lower 13.7k ohms (both figures measured at 1kHz). The selected input was available at the Preamp Out jacks, with a negligible insertion loss of 0.04dB.

The phono section's RIAA error, assessed at the preamp output, is shown in fig.1. The treble is lifted by 0.3dB, which will be audible as added detail, while the low frequencies are rolled off early, reaching -3dB at 30Hz. This is presumably to ensure that the rumble content from inexpensive turntables is well-suppressed. Phono overload was merely good, at around 18.7dB in the midband and treble, increasing to 22.3dB at 20Hz.

Fig.1 Creek 5350SE, phono stage RIAA error at 1mV/1kHz, measured at preamp outputs into 100k ohms (0.5dB/vertical div.).

The Creek's output impedance was a very low 0.05 ohms across the audioband, resulting in very little response modification due to interaction with the partnering speaker's impedance characteristic. This can be seen in fig.2, which also reveals a sensible and well-controlled rolloff above the audioband. This results in a slight slowing of a 10kHz squarewave's risetimes (fig.3), but no overshoot or ringing can be seen. Channel separation was merely good (fig.4), with the upward slope due to capacitive coupling between channels, probably across the volume control and its surrounding printed-circuit-board real estate.

Fig.2 Creek 5350SE, frequency response at (from top to bottom at 2kHz): 2.83V into dummy loudspeaker load, 1W into 8 ohms, 2W into 4 ohms, and 4W into 2 ohms (0.5dB/vertical div.).

Fig.3 Creek 5350SE, small-signal 10kHz squarewave into 8 ohms.

Fig.4 Creek 5350SE, channel separation (10dB/vertical div., R-L dashed).

US distributor: Music Hall
108 Station Road
Great Neck, NY 11023
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