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Cafad

Job INT Integrated Amplifier Review

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Well it has taken some time, effort and patience but I think I've just about got things sorted.  The JOB INT seems to be far more sensitive than most amps are to the speaker cables in use with it.  Too much copper and the bass is too big, too little and the bass is too glarey but if you can find the middle ground then things sound pretty good.

 

By way of further explanation I offer this picture.

post-130663-0-80077400-1455929117_thumb.

 

And now I shall retreat back to the lounge, there is work to be done.

Edited by Cafad

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Geez, that is sensitive. Looking forward to the full report

I think a large part of the sensitivity involved is really me being sensitive to headaches that are caused by very prominent bass.  But for now, I'm blaming the amp.

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OK, time to get down to it then.  In the spirit of being brutally honest I still don't like the Job, I don't dislike it as much as I did a couple of months ago but it still isn't going to be my best friend any time soon.  So no, it is not a keeper.  

 

I've come up with the term "percussively prominent" to describe the presentation of the Job.  Drums, and too a lesser extent instruments like the cello and double bass, get the "enhanced and brought forward with extra impact" treatment and this, IMO at least, is a bad thing. Mostly because the rest of the Job's presentation is quite good until the bass shows up and gets in the road.  The top end is rather good and nicely musical but that musicality cannot be heard if there is any bass present, with bass present the top end goes from nicely musical to moderately flat.  The sound stage is also quite good, both 2D and 3D, but both of those disintegrate into non-existence upon the arrival of anything vaguely bass related.

 

It seems to me that the amp is trying to say "Look at me I can do a lot of things well but if you want some bass at the same time then they will all sound decidedly average."

 

And now for the details.  Source in use is my YBA Heritage cd100 cd spinner, XLO silver coax cable and 10AWG Ugly speaker cable with banana plugs I sourced several years ago from Jaycar (and that speaker cable set up sounds markedly better on the Job than the Redgum Audio Pipeline or the Aurealis UP620e, yep, go figure).

 

Highs:  Very nice and very musical when heard in isolation but that musicality quickly evaporates if any percussion instruments are playing at the same time.  In isolation, 8.0, in combination about a 5.5.

 

Mids:  Light to mid level sweet strings, loved spanish guitar (again in isolation) and softly played piano is fairly good (not the best I've heard but good enough to enjoy).  In isolation 7.75, in combination 6.0.

 

Bass:  Percussive prominence dominates the entire presentation, bass is tight and forward, fast and strong!  Bass guitar notes a little too crisp.  Acoustic drums are far easier to take than electronic ones but even then there is an enhanced impact effect noticeable.  As I've said previously recordings made (and mastered!) before the 1990's sound very good but those made after just sound, well, far too percussive.  In isolation 6.0, in combination with everything else 4.0  (because if there is bass there then there is nothing special about any of the other aspects of the performance).

 

Vocals:  F:  Nice, slightly sweet and lightly breathy, again not the best I've heard but good enough to live with (until the bass shows up anyway, after that they are about as pleasant as chewing on cardboard).  In isolation 7.5, in combination 5.5.

M:  Surprisingly good, I was noticing a few vocal inflections that I hadn't really noticed before, the Job surprised me here.  In isolation 8.0, in combination 6.5.

 

2D soundstaging:  with an absence of bass the stereo effects are good, vocals tend to be centered and the instruments set around or slightly in front of them.  Small acoustic drums tend to move around in an energetic fashion as they should but larger drums don't move more than a foot from either speaker.  7.5 without bass, 6.5 with.

 

3D soundstaging:  OK but not great, about 6.5 without bass.  With bass the entire 3D effect is annihilated, 0.0, it is just not present.

 

Overall Performance Integration:

I think I've covered this pretty well already.  If you take the bass region out it is a pretty good amp.  

 

Ability to Emote:

Really hard to put a number on this, I'm feeling more frustration than anything.  Maybe a 7.0 if I mentally disregard the bass effect, bringing the bass back into play I think I'd give it about a minus 6.0.  

 

Electric Guitar Test:

Pretty good, plenty of growl but could use a little more edge, 7.75... maybe an 8.0 if it's playing solo.

 

80's Rock Test:

8.0 with no bass issues to be heard.  If I needed another reason to like 80's rock that just might do it.

 

If anyone knows of a song that I can get hold of that has been recorded in two versions, one with an acoustic drum kit and one with an electronic drum kit in use then I would be very interested in comparing the two.  You may have to be quick though because at the moment I don't like the Job enough to keep it any longer than I absolutely have to.  I'm so very much not a fan of that bass.

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And compared to the hk990, which if I recall correctly, was the last amp to disagree with you so strongly? Or was that an onkyo

Edited by Jone5y

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It was the Onkyo 9070 that was the last amp that earned my displeasure (and more recently, but to a far lesser extent, the Sugden Mystro), I have yet to hear a HK990.

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It's unfortunate that the sq doesn't suit you.. I don't think that there's too much bass, but it really brought out the bass from my Aurum Cantus V3M. My friend who is using the Volent-VL2 Signature bookshelves also loves the INT for the analogue sounding midrange, delicate highs and grippy bass. I guess it's really the pairing that makes a difference, and that the INT doesn't work in your setup.

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It's unfortunate that the sq doesn't suit you.. I don't think that there's too much bass, but it really brought out the bass from my Aurum Cantus V3M. My friend who is using the Volent-VL2 Signature bookshelves also loves the INT for the analogue sounding midrange, delicate highs and grippy bass. I guess it's really the pairing that makes a difference, and that the INT doesn't work in your setup.

 

Cafad has the advantage of being exposed to many more amplifiers than most people are, over long periods and in his own system. 

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It's unfortunate that the sq doesn't suit you.. I don't think that there's too much bass, but it really brought out the bass from my Aurum Cantus V3M. My friend who is using the Volent-VL2 Signature bookshelves also loves the INT for the analogue sounding midrange, delicate highs and grippy bass. I guess it's really the pairing that makes a difference, and that the INT doesn't work in your setup.

What style of music do you listen to?  If there are one or two albums that you think the Job does really well I'm happy to buy a copy and have a listen so we can compare notes.

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Nice write-up. Written without fear or favour. Just as it should be. 

Thanks ZB, free and clear is the only way to fly.

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Hello all,

 

I've got the Job INTegrated for about 6 weeks now. I do like te sound. But it's not a night and day difference with my former set consisting of a Sonneteer Alabaster and Metrum Octave dac. I can't relate to the bass problems Cafad experiences. I do have a small listening room and I do have a bass problem sometimes. Especially with computerised base lines. But the INT is certainly NOT worse as the Alabaster is on this point. With classical music and Howe Gelb / Mark Lanegan like music bass is okay. I can't say the INT sounds better compared to the Alabaster. Maybe at low volume it is a bit more expressive. During the evening I often really start listening instead when I'm reading a book. That's a good sign. 

 

Greetings

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A Sonneteer Alabaster!  Colour me jealous @@Jaap I still have very fond memories of a little Sonneteer Campion that passed through my hands a few years ago, I'd love to hear an Alabaster.

 

My Job INT has now been moved on.  I delivered it to its new owner today and I must say, it sounded far, far better on his Sonus Fabers than it ever did on my Lenehans (or KEFs for that matter).  I think it will like its new home.

 

So that's it from me on the Job INT front, everyone else is of course welcome to post their opinions on the Job but I'm pretty much done and dusted.

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On 13/03/2016 at 12:08 PM, Cafad said:

A Sonneteer Alabaster!  Colour me jealous @@Jaap I still have very fond memories of a little Sonneteer Campion that passed through my hands a few years ago, I'd love to hear an Alabaster.

 

My Job INT has now been moved on.  I delivered it to its new owner today and I must say, it sounded far, far better on his Sonus Fabers than it ever did on my Lenehans (or KEFs for that matter).  I think it will like its new home.

 

So that's it from me on the Job INT front, everyone else is of course welcome to post their opinions on the Job but I'm pretty much done and dusted.

Hello Cafad,

 

Many thanks for your great coverage of personnal listenning sessions and feelings.

Just a question : a lot of owners speak about the importance of getting great power cable. Did you listen the INT with a great power cord or not?

 

I also guess it was your speakers that didn't fit the Job. And what was the name of the Faber speakers of the man you sold the amp?

All the best,

Ben

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Hi Ben, I'm going to have to wrack my brain for the answers to these questions of yours.  I haven't had the Job on hand for over 3 years.

 

I'm not a "power cord advocate" * but just in case I was wrong when I came to this conclusion several years ago I bought 6 power cords from an SNA member who makes them.  They are well made with Furutech fittings on both ends and it would have been one of these that I used the Job with (most likely, it is also possible that I used the default cord that came with the amp, I'm afraid I  can't remember the specifics from 3 years ago, and I don't seem to have a pic that includes the power cord). The Job Int is not a particularly expensive amp, I see no reason why expensive power cords should be needed to accessorize it.

 

I can only say that the Sonus Faber speakers that the new owner was using were an older pair of medium sized stand mounts.  I've had a quick google to see if I could jog my memory but I'm afraid there are too many choices that all look very similar.  The Minima almost looks familiar.

 

*  I have, several times, performed tests with power cords.  At least twice on sources and twice more on integrated amps and I found only one cord that could be said to be an improvement.  That cord was one I made myself and since it does not meet any electrical standards (It can't, I'm not an electrician) then I don't feel it is a realistic contender.  I only went up to $300 power cords.

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Interesting review.I also find some types of bass delivery tend to give me a headache.I think ported speakers are probably more likely to show up these sorts of interactions.Perhaps the Job amplifier might be better with sealed box or open baffle speakers?

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Hello guys,

 

I have been using the Job INT for some time and I really love it ! But I am looking for a great power cord as i live in France - so the Job Sweet Cord doesn't fit EU outlets.

 

Would you get any advices of a great model that works perfectly?

 

Many thanks,

Edited by Bendo

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