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Audio

Published on June 25th, 2020 | by The GC Team

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Quad launches Artera Solus Play

British audio brand Quad is launching a new version of its Artera Solus ‘just add speakers’ single-chassis hi-fi system, adding network streaming to the multi-tasking mix.

The new Artera Solus Play offers hi-res streaming via Wi-Fi and Ethernet cable, the ability to form part of a synchronised wireless multi-room system, Bluetooth reception, CD playback, full DAC and preamp facilities to hook up other audio devices and powerful stereo amplification in a single chassis.

The Artera Solus Play’s Wi-Fi networking is powered by DTS Play-Fi: an app-controlled platform enabling high-quality, whole-home wireless audio, capable of streaming hi-res music up to 24-bit/192kHz and “supported by a greater range of established audio brands than any other wireless platform.” The free Play-Fi app (available for iOS, Android and Kindle Fire devices, Windows PCs and Apple and Android smartwatches) is a gateway to music services including Spotify, Tidal, Amazon Music, Deezer, Qobuz, HDtracks, TuneIn, iHeartRadio and SiriusXM. It can also access a streaming library stored on any DLNA-compatible NAS drive or media server on the same home network.

Playlists and radio stations can be assigned as shortcut presets within the app; Works With Alexa support enables voice-controlled playback when the Artera Solus Play is paired with any Amazon Alexa-equipped device.

Play-Fi supports a wide variety of file formats, including MP3, MP4A, AAC, FLAC, WAV and AIFF. In standard mode, which is optimised for multi-room bandwidth, audio is streamed at up to 16-bit/48kHz –“akin to CD-quality.” By engaging Play-Fi’s Critical Listening Mode, hi-res audio up to 24-bit/192kHz may be streamed to the Artera Solus Play over Wi-Fi or Ethernet cable, without transcoding or down-sampling.

Users can also hook up directly to the Spotify app thanks to Spotify Connect, and stream from smartphones and tablets without connecting to the local Wi-Fi network using aptX Bluetooth.

The Artera Solus Play’s preamp and power amp stages incorporate balanced circuitry, short and direct signal paths and high-quality components to preserve sonic purity. Volume is adjusted in the analogue domain under microprocessor control, outputting directly to the dual-mono Class AB power amp stage which delivers 2x75W into eight ohms. To minimise distortion, the power supplies for the left and right channels are isolated from each other as well as from the rest of the system.

The model is available with a black or silver front panel embellished with an inlayed glass top

The new Artera Solus Play is available from July, with a choice of black or silver front panels and an RRP of £1,699. The original Artera Solus, without Wi-Fi/Ethernet network streaming, continues at £1,499.

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