Creek Audio has a long history of making fine sounding Phono pre-amplifiers.
Dating back to the company’s first product, the 4040 manufactured in 1982, and more recently the fine sounding OBH range of stand-alone Phono pre-amps, Creek has always applied extra attention to this part of an amplifier’s circuitry to obtain the best performance and price. The complexity and accuracy of previous Creek in-built and external Phono pre-amplifiers has always been balanced to suit the total cost of the product and to match the grade of performance versus price.
Creek’s first step towards a no-compromise Phono Pre-amplifier was introduced in 2006 when it produced the Destiny Phono Card. This plug-in circuit was exclusive to the Creek Destiny integrated amplifier and was limited to running from the amplifier’s own power supply. Its performance proved exemplary, due to the new circuit design, which utilised very high performance Op-Amps and Balanced SSM2019 integrated amplifiers, with extremely accurate passive components to achieve accurate RIAA EQ. To make it work within the limited confines of an integrated amplifier, it squeezed both left and right channels onto a small 4 layer PCB, using surface mount technology.
The success of the Destiny plug-in Phono board led to the development of the Wyndsor Phono Pre-amplifier, as a no compromise stand-alone product. It is built into the same stylish case as the Wyndsor LP1 Speed Controller, which is used to power Creek’s high-end turntable.
In order to provide the best performance, left and right channels are built on separate PCB’s.
Each channel has dedicated power supply regulation to completely isolate it from the other channel.
Unbalanced input and outputs are connected via high grade gold plated RCA sockets.
Balanced input is possible via dedicated 3 pin mini DIN sockets. Tone arms and some cartridges can be wired specially in balance configuration and soldered to the DIN plugs provided with this product.
Input selection, cartridge loading and gain are all fully adjustable from the front panel High quality gold contact relays are used to switch all the functions and are driven from a dedicated, stand-alone, high quality linear power supply to isolate them from the analogue pre-amp circuitry.
The front panel display indicates which functions have been selected. A micro-controller based control interface is accessed through a rotary input selector and push buttons. Several types of cartridge with different parameters can be programmed and the user can name and store them as pre-set numbers in the unit’s memory. It is possible to write up to 16 characters on the display for each selection. For each entry the display will show the cartridge name and type, plus a full description of loading, gain and input type. The display can be adjusted in brightness or turned off completely.
Mute will short the output of the pre-amp, to enable the user to change a record and cut the volume in a convenient way and return to the previous level by pressing the Mute button again.
The Phono pre-amplifier uses a newly developed Wyndsor power supply unit, with separate supplies for analogue and digital circuits. Turning the pre-amp on and off from the mains is achieved by the switch on the front of the power supply or on the back of the pre-amp.
|Gain||40dB, 45dB, 53dB, 61dB, 70dB|
|Frequency Response||0.5Hz – 100kHz (+/-0.5dB)|
|IEC Roll-off||(7950us) -3dB @ 20Hz -6dB @10 Hz|
|Input Capacitance||100pF, 440pF, 1.1nF, 1.4nF|
|Input Resistance||91R, 100R, 1k, 33k, 47k|
|Output Voltage||10V maximum|
|Inputs||Unbalanced RCA and Balanced mini DIN sockets|
|Power Supply||2x toroidal mains transformers and low noise regulators|
|Size||Pre-amp main body = 192mm x 62mm x 195mm WxHxD (Height including feet, depth including the control knob.)Power supply = 112mm x 63mm x 210mm.|
|Weight||Pre-amp = 1.4kg – Power supply = 1.4kg|
|Finish Colours||Black or Silver|