Creek Evolution 50CD CD-player

The poor Compact Disc player, once a carton that is vestigial with no input signals as well as one set of analogue output signals is increasingly being a preamp using an optical disc and DAC transportation assembled in. Gone is the time when it had been viewed as an end in itself it's to all intents and purposes a digital music centre.

A difficult spot to put your tent up, afterward. The GBP1,000 CD player marketplace is a catchy one - with some really able kit from Cyrus and Roksan set to make life difficult. But Creek has a redoubtable reputation for great- affordable CD players - Mike Creek has formed a profession of doing extremely pleasant-sounding products that mere humans can afford. And so the Evo 50CD needs to not be bad; the question is not how bad, and does it deliver all of the additional functionality that it provides?

To CD playing that is fundamental, it adds several digital input signals, source changing and a Bluetooth choice allied to your volume control, in order to plug it directly into a power amplifier in the event you want. Really, the Evo 50CD offers an amount of refinement that is functional that Creek hasn't unable to give. It has a system remote that and other Creek parts integrate also. Button and screen brightness levels could additionally change.

The machine is quite pleasant to make use of, just as lavish in feel which can be truly saying something. Those backlit buttons are an excellent feature if you are a bohemian who loves to love his music in comparatively low light states.

Although an actual success that is ergonomic, some may wonder why there's no front panel volume control facility on the good-looking front panel of the machine. Built to form the center of a connected system, in the event that you lose the remote control abruptly you have lost one of the most critical functions of this machine.

You will also enjoy the back panel's selection of balanced XLR outputs and RCA phono.

Beneath the hood, there is more in relation to the customary focus on detail that you'd be prepared to see in an excellent mid-priced machine for example this. A 25W toroidal mains transformer, with three different secondary voltage windings for digital and analogue circuitry. This offers both single and symmetrical filtering -ended and balanced output capacity -current output capacity.

Sound quality

The brand new Evolution 50CD comes with a pleasing and interesting sound, one which is very well rounded across the board. Tonally, it is unmistakably a Creek, meaning the bass guitar is much more sumptuous and a bit warmer than some leaner, meaner competitions - while the midband is much more open and a tad smoother. But this also means the player is more mild in the upper group, giving a laid back sound. Many will believe this to be no bad thing, where CD can be involved. It gives it a more 'analogue' feel than instant competitors including the Audiolab 8200CD, which comes over as clearly beguiling to listen to - pleasure.

Shove on some well-recorded rock music including the exceptional Welcome to the Occupation of REM to the slot-loading drive and you're going to be greeted with a sound that is very pleasant. All in all, the sound is well balanced using the smallest heat in the top bass guitar, which gives things a body that is pleasant. More precious, however, is the fluidity which modulates up and down with the ease you do not anticipate from digital. It underpins Peter Buck's ring and incorporates beautifully to the music Rickenbacker guitars farther upward. Michael Stipe's vocals sound as if he is actually pushing himself highly impassioned, without ever sounding raucous, as well as the 50CD captures. It picks through the wall of multi-tracked guitars easily, giving them space and putting them in an extensive soundstage. The cymbal and drum work can also be exceptional, using a light, airy top end that is decently smooth.

This vital musicality is not lost when you go to electronic music demonstrating the player is essentially quite nicely balanced. Tonally it is not rough with that huge fat bass guitar as does its fine visionary upper group showing itself away again; Billy Mackenzie's backing vocals are incredibly carried, seeming pure and natural. The Creek is great also it captures the accenting on summits somewhat better.

Going to the digital input signals, and into a MacBook Pro USB shows a great associate via it. This does not appear to adversely influence the sound, however, and The Scorpions' China White is punchy and strong as I expected, to the raucous with excellent feel, cranked-up electric guitars. Really, the soundstage is vast, the loudspeakers apparently disappear to the area as those power chords assault me, making to get a sound that is visceral. In once, those cymbal crashes that are prickling and wailing vocals step on the breach into harshness, while creating a genuine impression. I am able to hear the Wolfson DAC sound that is normal - a somewhat loose although large bass allied to some broad group that goes as much as a well-lit treble that gives a metallic feel to cymbals - and it definitely works nicely here.

It is with this particular kind of music that hires digital actually comes into its own; unexpectedly CD does not look fit for function any more. Here, the Evolution 50CD serves up an ample acoustic guitar that is recorded with filling depth, convincing a great awareness of the feel as well as scale. The music flows in a tuneful and enjoyable manner, giving an immersive listening experience. It seems no worse, although again, it does not quite have the hunting, forensic lowlevel detailing of the Audiolab - really tonally it's sweeter and more palatable with the 8200 CD. In total terms, there is too little accurate three dimensional picture projection as well as a little diffuseness to the sound, but you will need to spend many times the Creek's price on an exotic high end DAC to get a remarkable development. It's true, this gifted new machine actually is quite great.


The avowed aim of creek would be to make an outstanding all round program - one that manages to combine functional flexibility that is actual with top notch sound and convenience. And overall it's succeeded - this new machine is superb, proving a longterm that was great listen. It is also exceptionally flexible and is quite pleasant to make use of too - because of the slick slot-loading fine OLED screen, backlit buttons and CD drive. Therefore, in the event you're trying to find an excellent do-it-all apparatus that is digital, this can be an audition that is absolutely crucial.

Creek Evolution 50CD CD-player photo