Mark Levinson previews No. 5101 series streaming SACD Player and DAC
Super Audio CD still has supporters
High end audio manufacturer, Mark Levinson, announces the № 5101 integrated streaming SACD player and DAC, ideal for use with the company’s 5000 series of integrated amplifiers.Announced at the 2019 High End Munich trade show, the US made № 5101 takes decades of audio engineering experience, adds the PrecisionLink II DAC plus music streaming capabilities and pitches itself as something a bit different given its support for the Super Audio CD format, all for a hefty $5500.
The № 5101 offers playback of a range of physical disc formats including SACD, CD-A, CD-R and CD-RW and supports a wide variety of file formats such as FLAC, WAV, AIFF, OGG, MP3, AAC and WMA.
The player will also stream audio from any NAS, UPnP and DNLA device found on the same ethernet or Wi-Fi network as itself. It will also playback and navigate files from a USB flash drive connected to the USB type A input, and the digital connections - one S/PDIF optical and one coaxial - enable the № 5101 to act as a high quality DAC for digital sources.
Once inside the player, the digital signal is processed by the PrecisionLink II DAC, which incorporates the latest ESS PRO Sabre 32-bit D/A converter with jitter elimination circuitry. This digital processing stage is powered by a fully balanced, discrete current-to-voltage converter which is based on those found in the № 5802 and № 5805 integrated amps. These same amps can take a stereo PCM signal from the № 5101 via optical and coaxial digital outputs if further power is required.
A toroidal transformer feeds the circuitry found in the № 5101 and each channel has an individual regulator to ensure dual monaural operation.
The components are shielded in a steel cage which is isolated from the digital and analogue signal paths to keep them as clean and free from interference as possible.
Attention to detail extends to the finish and exterior detailing which is based around the company’s hallmark black anodized chassis, a design associated with the brand since the beginning. The aluminium front panel and glass display are machine tooled to give an elegant design.
Integration into custom installations is supported by ethernet and RS-232 ports plus IR and 12V trigger inputs.
In keeping with the high quality finish and components, the slot-loading CD transport is suspended on steel standoffs floating on a PVC and styrene-butadiene rubber sandwich and shielded with a steel cover.
Jim Garrett, Senior Director, Product Strategy & Planning, HARMAN Luxury Audio commented, "The № 5101 is a very exciting new product. There are high-end CD players on the market though few that support the SACD format and feature integrated streaming." He went on, "The Mark Levinson level of industrial design and ground-breaking engineering that has gone into this player are remarkable, and we expect the № 5101 will redefine expectations for integrated audio media players."
On display at the Munich High End event, the Mark Levinson № 5101 streaming SACD player and DAC will be available towards the end of the year, priced $5,500.
Source: Harman press release.
Image Source: Harman
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