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Exposure 3010S2-D

Exposure has just announced the fourth generation of their flagship integrated amplifier – the new 3010S2-D.  The new 3010S2-D carries over with six line level inputs; however, one of these is now a direct AV input (home-theatre pas through).  This latest model now offers the option to fit a MM or MC phonostage, or an integrated DAC (192/24 bit PCM and DSD 64 via two inputs: USB and BNC).  A preamp output is provided for the option to add a separate power amplifier.  Speaker terminals are doubled to allow bi-wiring.

The Exposure 3010S2-D has been built using high-quality capacitors within the signal path and circuit topology that has been laid out to keep supply paths short; with cascode circuitry for improved power supply immunity.  A brand new circuit board with all discrete components is now used and the power amp features a fast bipolar transistor output stage.  A new power supply adds extra stages of regulation for improved performance.

Technical specifications

Power output (stereo) 110 Watts per channel at 1KHz into 8 Ohms
Input impedance 17K Ohms minimum (line input)
Input sensitivity 250mV
Pre-amplifier output 1V for rated input (gain + 18dB full volume)
Frequency response 20Hz – 20KHz ± 0.5dB
Total harmonic distortion <0.03% at rated output, ref. 1KHz
Signal to noise ratio >100dB, ref. rated output
Channel separation >60dB, 20Hz – 20KHz
Mains supply 110/120V or 220/240V, 50/60Hz (factory set)
Power consumption <400VA, 8 Ohms load, both channels driven
Dimensions 115mm (h) x 440mm (w) x 300mm (d)
Net weight (unpacked) 12kg
Gross weight (packed) 14kg
Warranty 3 years

The Exposure 3010S2-D integrated amplifier is available now in silver or black, priced at £1,700 (incl. VAT) with the optional MM phonostage being £240 or MC phonostage £240.  North American pricing and availability has not been announced.  Look for more details at: http://www.exposurehifi.com/

 

TDK TREK Flex Bt Speaker

TDK Life on Record, is a brand that just announced a new product to its offering – the new TREK Flex portable Bluetooth, wireless, sound-enhanced and shock-resistant powered loudspeaker.

The new TREK Flex is both weatherproof and wireless, and incorporates MaxxBass for enhanced bass performance.  The TDK Life on Record TREK Flex is able to produce 360 degree room-filling audio from almost any place.

Cylindrical in shape, the TREK Flex surrounds listeners with rich sound from two full-range speakers and a passive radiator.  MaxxBass by Waves is a patented virtual subwoofer technology that successfully produces the sensation of deep bass.

TREK Flex Features:
• IK07 shock resistant design
• Bluetooth wireless technology
• Rechargeable battery with micro USB to USB charging (1 amp)
• Two full-range drivers and one passive radiator
• Built-in track controls and speakerphone functionality
• IP65 weatherproof design protects against water and dust

The new TREK Flex will be available in Q1-2015 with a MSRP of: $129.95 U.S.  For more information, please visit: http://www.tdkperformance.com.

Sennheiser Momentum 2nd Gen

Sennheiser has just launched their 2nd generation Momentum headphones.  The new models provide greater comfort, convenience and most noteworthy new wireless models.

The new Momentum Wireless and Momentum On-Ear Wireless include NFC technology for single touch pairing with any NFC-enabled mobile device, quickly establishing a Bluetooth connection for audio transmission; the apt-X codec provides high quality sound wirelessly to any Bluetooth apt-X-enabled device.  Wireless models also incorporate NoiseGard, an advanced Active Noise Cancellation technology that uses four microphones to efficiently monitor and block ambient noise and provide a perfect listening experience in even the noisiest environments.  With long-lasting built-in rechargeable batteries with a 22 life, Momentum Wireless models are well suited to being used on the move.

The new generation Momentum and Momentum Wireless are available in elegant Black and Ivory versions, as well as a classic Brown edition optimised for Apple iOS products. The Momentum On-Ear Wireless is available in Black and Ivory, whereas the wired Momentum On-Ear comes in Black, Ivory, Brown and Silver.

Enhancement to the second generation Momentum models include: a subtly redesigned earpads that still features Alcantara on the Momentum On-Ear, but now rounder in profile to make it even more comfortable.  The over-ear Momentum features larger, more padded ear pads for improved comfort with asymmetric shape to ensure a perfect fit, and reduction of external noise.  The new Momentum On-Ear retains the preceding model’s use of Alcantara on the ear pads – a luxury material used by car and yacht upholsterers for its unique combination of softness, comfort and durability.

The new folding headband design allows the new Momentum headphones to easily and compactly stowed, while the use of ultra strong and lightweight stainless steel sliders ensures that the new models are durable and long-lasting.

The new Momentum models feature a three-button in-line remote with an integrated mic for controlling music and taking calls. They will be available from January 2015 in two variants, optimised for either Apple iOS or Android and Windows smart devices such as Samsung Galaxy models. The Wireless MOMENTUM models allow for calls and music to be controlled directly from the headphones. These models come supplied with a charging cable and a flight adaptor as standard.

The Momentum Wireless and Momentum On-Ear Wireless will be priced at $499 U.S. and $399 U.S. respectively.  Look for more details at: www.sennheiser-momentum.com.

Cambridge Audio 851N

Cambridge Audio has just recently announced the launch of their new flagship network music player – the Azur 851N.  The 851N is a no compromise product that is capable of playing all popular formats up to 24-bit/192kHz studio master quality files.

The 851N combines specially selected, audiophile grade components in an all-metal, ultra-rigid chassis.  A new 4.3″ colour screen displays album artwork, while the new Cambridge Connect Apps for Apple and Android provides for an easy and enjoyable user experience.

The 851N can connect wired or wirelessly via UPnP over a home network, allowing it to effortlessly find and stream music stored on computers, laptops and NAS drives. Three USB inputs allow direct playback from USB HDDs and memory sticks. There are also two Toslink optical inputs, two S/PDIF coaxial inputs, an AES/EBU input and asynchronous USB audio.

Asynchronous USB audio allows playback of up to 24-bit/192kHz audio files direct from a connected computer or laptop, with the 851N effectively acting as a high-quality external sound card.

The 851N also features Apple Airplay and support for an optional BT100 aptX Bluetooth receiver for instant and effortless streaming from any smartphone or tablet to play back users’ favourite apps and services in stunning quality.

RCA and balanced XLR analogue outputs, as well as a digital AES/EBU, TOSLINK and coaxial outputs, allow connection to a wide range of high-performance Hi-Fi components, and the RS-232 port enables integration into custom installations.

Capable of handling all popular codecs including WMA, MP3, AAC, HE AAC, AAC+ and Ogg Vorbis and lossless 24-bit/192kHz FLAC, ALAC, WAV and AIFF files, the 851N can play virtually any file from a digital music library. There is also in-built support for leading streaming services including Spotify Connect, Pandora, Rhapsody, BBC iPlayer Radio, and of course Internet radio.

Using the unique second-generation Adaptive Time Filtering (ATF2) audio upsampling, which intelligently upsamples all audio inputs to 24-bit/384kHz to draw out extra detail and virtually eliminate the jitter inherent to digital inputs.

The new 851N utilizes twin Analog Devices AD1955 DACs in ‘dual differential’ mode (with left/right channels processed separately) to ensure the best D/A conversion.  Audiophile grade components, including a high-end digital preamplifier and large toroidal transformer, powered by a fully linear power supply guarantees true class leading performance and a product that deserves flagship status.

Furthermore, the internal digital preamp is driven by a high spec, custom-coded 32-bit Blackfin DSP which keeps the audio signal in the digital domain for as long as possible, limiting analogue signal deterioration and noise. It also ensures that the 851N is much more than just a network streamer, but a high-end digital pre-amp too, making it the ideal partner for the Azur 851W or an existing power amplifier.  There is no bit reduction for volume control, instead volume is controlled by the Blackfin DSP to preserve signal integrity and overall sound quality.

A brand new, more powerful processor enables 24-bit/192 kHz streaming over Wi-Fi and also allows for a much more user-friendly interface. Whether using the superb 4.3″ TFT colour display, or the completely redesigned Cambridge Connect Apps for both Apple and Android devices, control of the Azur 851N is effortless.

In-keeping with the rest of the flagship Azur 851 Series, the 851N has all-metal casework and ultra-rigid chassis, precision engineered for audio performance and longevity.

The all new Azur 851N flagship network music player was just debuted at CES 2015 in Las Vegas and will be available by the end of Q1/2015 at a MSRP of: $1,800 U.S.  Look for more information at: http://www.cambridgeaudio.com/.

 

UE Megaboom

Ultimate Ears (UE) has partnered with semiconductor company CSR pLc to deliver enhanced connectivity to its existing and future UE BOOM and UE MEGABOOM speakers.  Users will now be able to connect more than 10 of its popular UE BOOM and/or new UE MEGABOOM speakers together at once.  The new feature will be demonstrated at CES 2015 and is expected to be available in Summer 2015.

Since 2013, UE has been building on its mobile speaker category and delivering software updates available to every speaker purchased since the launch of UE BOOM, including Double Up, alarm functionality and remote On/Off.  UE is also the first to introduce over-the-air updates for Bluetooth speakers, making updating your speaker easier than ever before.  With the latest 10 speaker Bluetooth pairing capability, UE has empowered users of UE BOOM and UE MEGABOOM products to create a bigger than ever ad hoc speaker system anywhere its needed or wanted.

To take advantage of the new feature once it’s available, users can simply download the free app for iOS or Android for their UE speaker model, open it and upgrade their speaker’s software in the settings menu.

This new feature for UE BOOM and UE MEGABOOM is expected to be available in Summer 2015 as a FREE software update. For more information, please visit http://www.ultimateears.com.

Philips Fidelio

The new Philips Fidelio NC1L on-ear headphones will be on display at the Gibson Brands tent, Central Plaza One at the CES 2015.  The Philips Fidelio NC1L on-ear headphones are the first ever battery-free active noise cancelling headphones.  This feat is accomplished by using a direct digital connection to an iOS device with a Lightning connector.  Digital to Analog Conversion (24-bit) as well as amplification takes place within the NC1L headphones themselves to ensure the highest level of performance.

Combining high-quality sound, sophisticated design and advanced technology, the headphones include three modes:

•Active Noise Cancelling – for fully immersive noise cancellation
•Open-ear listening – lets in ambient noise so that you can hear what’s going on around you when using the headphones
•Natural voice – a calibrated level of Active Noise Cancellation to enable a more natural and comfortable experience when making calls using the built-in mic

The Philips Fidelio NC1L headphones use a hybrid Active Noise Cancellation approach, with four microphones detecting ambient noise before inverting the signal, effectively cancelling it out and converting background noise to silence. Two ‘FeedBackward’ microphones positioned next to the headphone drivers provide strong noise cancellation at low frequencies, whilst the two ‘FeedForward’ microphones positioned on the outside of the headphone extend the bandwidth of noise cancellation into the mid and high frequencies.

A full chain of audiophile-grade components – coupled with perfectly tuned high-bandwidth and high-precision neodymium drivers – ensures a truly exceptional sound experience on the go. Compact fully foldable and lightweight, the headphones’ memory foam ear pads are designed to provide an ergonomic fit, great comfort and breathability – ensuring you can continue to enjoy the sound the headphones deliver, even over the long haul.

The Philips Fidelio NC1L headphones will be available in North America in April 2015 at a MSRP of: $299 U.S.  Look for more information to become available at: http://www.philips.ca.

 

 

Baetis Audio

Baetis Audio has announced their new Revolution III server that uses a modified PCB from their Reference’s design.  The new board forgoes a USB / PCI bus to provide a more perfect digital wave form, including a significant gain in the voltage (amplitude) of the SPDIF signal as well as a decrease in rise time.  The Revolution III, when used with a revealing DAC will demonstrate a clear improvement in accuracy, musicality and sound stage compared to its predecessor, the Reference.

Baetis servers use JRiver Media Center for the highest performance.  The Baetis Revolution III server can rip and play CDs, DVDs, and Blu-ray discs as well as any audio file format, including professionally ripped SACDs, downloaded PCM and DSD files in 2-channels or multi-channel, at any sampling rate or bit depth.

For the audiophile who likes to watch and listen to multi-channel concerts or movies, the Baetis also produces video – possessing two separate HDMI outputs.

Key Features:

◦Special low wattage Intel Core i3 latest Generation CPU to reduce heat and produce the best audio quality along with exceptional video quality.
◦Special 5th generation H97 motherboard with a high (108db) signal/noise ratio.
◦120G internal solid-state drive for fast software execution and perfect ripping of Blu-ray files.
◦Best-rated digital noise filter for the internal SSD.
◦Highly rated Blu-Ray optical drive for ripping CDs, DVDs, Blu-Rays, and more.
◦All media storage drives are external, via 8 USB ports (4 USB3.0 ports in rear; 2 near the front), along with unlimited NAS. The Revolution comes with one 1T USB3.0 external drive to get the audiophile started. External storage minimizes EMI/RFI, provides for easier replacement, and significantly lowers mechanical noise. Remember, all drives will fail eventually; you do NOT want to store media inside the server – only via external drives or NAS.
◦The industry’s only galvanically-isolated and dedicated BNC-SPDIF output directly off the MB, without using a sound card that generates and absorbs EMI. We can show that SPDIF done right beats USB done right, but you need to audition this yourself. The BNC connection is fully gold-plated including the neutral.
◦On the way to the BNC connector, the Revolution III passes the SPDIF signal through our proprietary circuit board to improve the digital signal, just as in our newest XR3 and Reference 2 servers.
◦The system is as quiet as most fan-less servers as measured by a digital sound meter. See our white paper on the subject if you find this too hard to believe.
◦Specially selected fast RAM (8G) for greater video buffering and best audio.
◦Standard Power Supply Unit (PSU) is external to minimize EMI. This PSU has the lowest measured ripple/noise of any switch-mode PSU (10mV Peak-to-Peak). Its high DC amperage is necessary for tasks such as Blu-ray ripping and playing.
◦Pre-installed and specially configured JRiver Media Center software –the industry’s finest. We configure JRiver for your specific system, including your DAC or pre/pro, and for volume control either within the digital media software domain or via your pre-amp or pre-pro. Often we deal with a high-end 2-channel DAC within a high-end multi-channel system.
◦Optional installation of the very best CD ripping software — dBPoweramp.
◦The very best operating manuals for JRiver; use of Android or iOS tablets for remote control; going “headless”; using dBPoweramp; using MakeMKV software for Blu-Ray ripping; and library management within JRiver. Manuals available only to our customers.
◦2-years hardware warranty.
◦Four (4) hours of telephone support including remote desktop control software (usually both phone and desktop control together), for JRiver and other audiophile software. This usually occurs in 2 or 3 remote desktop sessions and is enough for all but the most “computer illiterate” among us. If more time is needed, we offer additional service by the hour or the year.
◦NOTE: The user must purchase his/her own monitor (not necessary in a home theater). The larger the monitor the easier it is to learn how to control this wonderful software package. Also a wireless keyboard and mouse is needed.
◦The user MUST purchase a specific brand and model of pure-sine-wave uninterruptible power supply (UPS) in order to properly control voltage going to our best in class AC/DC power supply. Our warranty is void without this important power supply (cost is approximately $120, or we can drop ship it to you for this price).
◦Size is approximately 9.5” wide by 9.5” deep by 4” high, and weight is approximately 13 lbs. without external UPS, external PSU , or external drives. In high-end audio, “small” can be quite powerful.

The new Baetis Audio Revolution III is available in both silver or black at a MSRP of $4495 U.S.  Look for more details at: http://www.baetisaudio.com.

Antelope Audio Zodiac DSD

Antelope Audio has just introduced a new combination of components: the Zodiac Platinum DAC with their Audiophile 10M Atomic Clock.  The high rate, dual DAC architecture of the Zodiac Platinum paired with the ultra stability provided by the 10M Atomic Clock has been assembled to deliver an uncompromising digital source solution.

Antelope Audio, a company widely known for its digital clocking technologies in the pro audio market has leveraged their technology for the 10M Atomic reference generator, used in mastering studios around the world.

The Zodiac Platinum features ultra-low jitter USB for streaming up to DSD128 and 384 kHz PCM, as well as comprehensive analog and digital I/O — including analog preamp inputs to various analog sources.  To ensure the highest level of details, imaging and dynamics, the Zodiac Platinum incorporates 64-bit precision 8x linear phase PCM and DSD upsampling capabilities and high rate dual DAC architecture.  High precision relay attenuators and dual variable impedance headphone outputs give listeners even greater control.

The Audiophile 10M Atomic Clock is an upgraded and enhanced version of Antelope’s legendary Isochrone 10M Atomic Clock that is well-known and regarded in the pro arena.  Pairing this 10M Audiophile Atomic Clock, with the Zodiac Platinum Acoustically Focused Clocking (AFC) jitter management technology delivers a noticeable improvement on audio depth and clarity.

Voltikus PSU is a second-generation power supply that has been purpose built for the Zodiac Platinum. The Voltikus’ triple regulated power supply, along with its integrated power line filtering, can make a significantly positive difference in audio quality, especially when combined with the Zodiac Platinum and 10M in an uncompromising DAC and clocking environment.

The Zodiac Platinum DSD DAC & Audiophile 10M Atomic Clock Bundle is available for: $12,995 U.S. The Zodiac Platinum ships with a dedicated aluminum IR remote and as well as a custom software control panel for PC, Mac or mobile control applications.  To learn more visit Antelope’s suite at CES (the Venetian, Suite 29-129). For more information look to: http://www.antelopeaudio.com/en.

 

McIntosh D150

McIntosh has just announced their new D150 digital stereo preamplifier. The new McIntosh D150 brings DSD and DXD format capabilities via a USB input that accepts up to 32-bit/384kHz signals, as well as DSD64, DSD128, DXD 352.8kHz and DXD 384kHz.  There are also two coaxial and two optical digital inputs that accept up to 24-bit/192kHz signals.

The D150 sports both balanced and unbalanced connections in variable and fixed volume outputs.  the D150 has been designed to also be used as a headphone amplifier.

The D150 uses the same revered DAC as the D100, featuring an 8 channel, 32-bit, 500kHz D/A converter with wide dynamic range and extremely low distortion. Eight channel D/A converter is used in stereo Quad Balanced mode. Music at all levels is reproduced with extreme precision and elegance. A 1/8” mini jack is provided for control data from the data output jack of a McIntosh preamp or A/V Control Center​. It shares the classic façade, knobs and handcrafted black-glass front panels as all other McIntosh components in a small form factor of just under 4″ in height.​

Price and availability are yet to be announced.  Look for more information to be shared at: http://www.mcintoshlabs.com.

 

 

Chord Hugo TT

Chord Electronics is following up their great success with the Hugo DAC with the launch of the new Chord Hugo TT, at CES 2015.  The new Hugo TT (the TT stands for table top) utilize the same circuit board of the current Hugo but within a larger case that is designed to sit on a desktop.  The new Hugo TT includes enhanced connectivity (RCA and fully balanced XLR outputs), an alphanumeric display, remote control and a USB B digital input.  The battery power of the Hugo TT vs. the Hugo is double and a 10’000’000uF bank of super-capacitor backup is an additional plus of the new Hugo TT.  The new Chord TT supports 32/384 PCM and DSD128 but also caters better to headphone users, having 2 x ¼” and 1 x 3.5mm outputs, a crossfeed filter, Bluetooth over A2DP and proprietary D/A decoding via a custom-coded Spartan 6 FPGA.

The Hugo TT will be available this February in silver or black at a price of: £2,995.  North American pricing is yet to be announced.  Look for more details at: http://www.chordelectronics.co.uk/

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