Review: Jeff Rowland Design Concentra mkIIp Amplifier


Category: Amplifiers

I'm in to Jazz (specially guitar), Funk, Afro-Cuban, some hip hop, Classic Rock and blends of these genres.

I use any/all Cubop label Afro-Cuban LP's for testing. they're the best recordings I've ever herd period. I also use Wes Montgomery on vinyl (because Wes rules), a Cachao CD called Dos.

For me naturalness, dynamics, warmth and detal are important. I want deep tigh extnded bass that is coherent with the rest of the sound and well defined. No one-note bass lines. Nauralness and warmth re more important than detail or even imaging. Bright tinny sounds turn me of no matter how detailed or how god the imaging is. Better to want more thn to get too much of one thing. If it's not there, you may not notice it but if there's too much you'll want it to go away.

Ive had the Concentra II about a month. It replaces the Plinius 8200 (8100 upgrde w/phono). Even if the Concentra doesn't have quite the raw musle, the refinement smoothness and naturalness with better imaging make it a pure joy. The build quality and intangibles are world class. Unbelievably beautiful. And also quite pwerful 175 watts per channel very conservatively rated I'm sure.

Strenths are beauty, convenience, world class sound, great phono, warmth, detail, power, naturalness.

Weaknesses, well it retils for $7,100 but if your an audiophle then that's not crazy. You can't record one source and listen to another like the Plinius. Sonically no weaknesses. Thi may be one of the best Integrted solid state rigs in the world.

If money was no object I would still be thrilled with this unit...who knows if money was no object I could die of my own devices. Cheers. Love. Dave in S.F.

Associated gear
Sony XA7ES CD, Project Perspective Turntable /Benz Micro Gilder Cartrige, Tannoy Definition 900 Floorstanding Towers.

Similar products
Plinius 8200
davabar
I don’t like JR. Typical high end snob selling mid-fi crap IMO.  Like I said years ago, my Mac separates blow this piece of junk away. Even my Krell KAX300R sounds better than this MID FI piece of crap from Rowland. At the time, I was using Wilson Sophia speakers and an SACD source as well as a VPI TT.
Hmm JEFF ROWLAND has ALWAYS designed beautiful gear! Krel is NO WHERE near as good! You must have been eating macaroni and decided to stuff your ears with it!
Agree with orgman above,I’ve had the Concentra II, Krell KAV300i, Perreaux and Plinius integrated amps,None sound as beautiful as the Concentra,Jadis DA60 gets close but is unreliable, PureAudio One surpassed the Concentra but the company is no more :(
You guys need hearing aids. That concentra sounded dark and flat like everything Rowland makes. Two dimensional mid fi. I had two of them and I couldn’t believe how bad they sounded hooked up to Wilson speakers and powered by really high-quality front ends. The McIntosh amp and pre blew that tin foil looking piece of junk away.
Ovature,
Please stop this nonsense. There is no other way to describe what you have written here. Concentra dark? Two dimensional? While everybody is entitled to an opinion, it seems you never heard JR Concentra.

I am now listening to original Concentra I, shocked how beautiful it sounds. (Never heard JR amps before).  I am considering buying it, however would also like to listen to another well respected amp from around that area (at least in Europe) from Denmark - Gryphon Callisto. 

BTW, in my main system, I use Krell KSA100 mk2, one of very few I actually like. The more modern ones are in my opinion nowhere near as good sonically as the 100mk2. Unless you are talking about D"Agostino's at 30 times the price... 
Best regards to all happy owners and fans of JR Concentra. Stay safe