NEWS: Technics presents OTTAVA SC-C70MK2 All-in-One Music System

interbear

Well-known Member
Just bought one of these as I was looking for something that would support music streaming, internet radio and CDs. I auditioned the previous version in John Lewis and thought it was good. This MK2 version adds Airplay 2 which works for me to stream Apple Music, and also supports Spotify Connect should I want to jump off the Apple train at some point.

Also, if anyone is interested, John Lewis have a great offer at the moment, buy this and get its smaller brother the SC-C30 free of charge, usual price for that is £499 so not a bad deal to get another wireless speaker for the kitchen, bedroom wherever. I’ll be interested to see how it all compares sound quality wise v the HomePods I currently use, but the added versatility is a major bonus for me and I look forward to playing my large CD collection that has been gathering dust since the last CD player I had decided to stop working. I’m having a buy v rent music moment and thinking I’d like to buy CDs and own my music again. Retro I know, but I’m not going as far as vinyl :)
 

interbear

Well-known Member
OK I’m now a few days in with my new Technics SC-C70 MK2, so some initial impressions.
  • Context - I use Apple Music family sub for streaming and have a few hundred CDs gathering dust. I wanted to replace my HomePods with something more versatile, a compact unit that could play both, plus internet radio. Separates, large speakers, lots of wires not an option in our relatively small living room.
  • Design - it‘s a compact box that seems to have very high build quality. It’s a solid unit. To pack so much into a compact “all in one” seems impressive to me.
  • Set Up - a bit of a faff to be honest but that is not all the fault of the Technics unit. First, install Google Home app to connect the Technics unit to Wi-fi. This took a few times to connect. Eventually it did. However, the Airplay 2 connectivity would be intermittent, sometimes it would show up as an available device, sometimes not. I’ve since realised that this is more to do with my BT Smarthub 2 router, which is dual band but does not have the ability to split bands for specific devices. It is not smart at all, in fact. This also caused all sorts of problems with my HomePod stereo pairing which also worked only occasionally. So I disabled the 5GHz band and put everything on 2.4GHz. All rock solid now and I’ve noticed no Wi-fi speed issues on other devices.
  • Versatility - The main reason I bought it. It certainly covers everything I need. So far I’ve used it for CDs, streaming Apple Music via Airplay, streaming Spotify via Spotify Connect, listening to Scottish radio via internet radio (need my football banter fix), listening to DAB radio. So far, everything works just fine. It has additional inputs on the back - Aux, optical, USB, should I wish to connect anything else, ie TV. Don’t need to so far.
  • Sound Quality - To my ears, impressive. Pretty open and engaging soundstage, plenty of detail. The “space tune” feature allows you to customise the sound based on position, either free, wall or corner, plus a customised option that it sets up itself or via the iPhone app. I did this and it made a positive difference. You can then also personalise the sound via the tone control and a remaster setting which also helps. I wasn’t expecting too much for a relatively compact unit, but the sound quality is considerably better than my HomePods, which I found a little too bass heavy. It’s a more nuanced and better balanced sound. Stereo separation is as expected, not as good as the HomePods but that‘s an unfair comparison really as the HomePods were in separate corners of the room whereas the Technics unit is on the bookshelf with its integral stereo speakers only 30-40cm apart. CD sound quality is excellent. For streaming, I initially found Spotify Connect better quality than Apple Music via Airplay, but I keep testing both via the same music tracks and Apple Music is winning me back, it’s better on some tracks so overall they are comparable and as I’m tied in with an Apple One Premier sub and have CDs ripped and album purchases via iTunes I will probably stick with it. I hope they respond to Spotify’s announcement to have a HQ version.
  • User interface - nice to have the option of using the provided remote control or the Technics Audio app. Creating favourites is easy, so I now have 1 press access to my favourite radio stations, whether internet or DAB. Old school but I like it. You can also save favourite playlists on Spotify this way I believe.
Overall I am very pleased. It’ll no doubt warm up and get even better with time but the overall package of decent sound and versatility in such a compact unit works very well for me. The fact I also got the smaller wireless SC-C30 speaker free was a nice bonus, current offer via John Lewis. The SC-C70 MK2 is £799 so not cheap but good value in my opinion, especially with the £499 SC-C30 thrown in free. That’s now installed in the kitchen and is also a better audio experience than the HomePod that it replaced.

Tagging @Onlythesound as I know you were interested in this. I’d recommend it, especially if you can grab the JL offer.
 

Onlythesound

Active Member
Thanks. A very interesting mini user’s review of this all in one. Your experience suggests a very good value machine with considerable quality and connectivity built in. You seem to be getting ease of use out of it too. As a fellow Apple Music / Airplay 2 user, that aspect caught my attention too.
Interesting price comparison against e.g. the Muso qb 2 and the Formation Wedge, both of which come without a CD player. I guess its main rivals come from Ruark but I don’t think they include Airplay (1 or 2).
 

interbear

Well-known Member
Couple of months later, I’m still impressed with the sound and versatility of these Technics speakers but the app and connectivity issues are letting the speakers down badly. Quite infuriating in fact. See my post here for more info:

Thread 'Technics Ottava speaker and app connectivity'
Technics Ottava speaker and app connectivity
 

interbear

Well-known Member
Thanks. A very interesting mini user’s review of this all in one. Your experience suggests a very good value machine with considerable quality and connectivity built in. You seem to be getting ease of use out of it too. As a fellow Apple Music / Airplay 2 user, that aspect caught my attention too.
Interesting price comparison against e.g. the Muso qb 2 and the Formation Wedge, both of which come without a CD player. I guess its main rivals come from Ruark but I don’t think they include Airplay (1 or 2).

To conclude my experience with this, I returned it yesterday to John Lewis. Lovely system but simply would not stay connected to the network so neither Airplay nor the Technics app could find the speaker. I was having to reconnect it almost every time I wanted to use it. A real shame but it means I’m now on the lookout for my next Airplay speaker that supports internet radio. The only positive learning to come out of this experience is that hardly any CDs were played in the couple of months I had it. So I’ve decided to bite the bullet and move with the times. Streaming only is the way forward so a CD player is no longer on the requirements list. That should widen my choice.

And, as it happens, the B&W Formation Wedge and Naim MuSo 2 are on my potential list along with the Kef LSX wireless speakers. I was able to listen to the Wedge yesterday and thought it sounded excellent. What did you go with in the end @Onlythesound ?
 

Onlythesound

Active Member
Well, a bit of a long story really. I had been looking for the ´holy grail’ of all-in-One systems for a while and had an original Muso, traded it in then when the Muso 2 emerged, thought I’d go for that. It was here that Déjà vu set in as, although there was great improvement over the original - connectivity superior to anything similar and steady connection to my WiFi signal (Plusnet at the time) - I still couldn’t get away from the feeling of listening to sound with a restricted field or stage.
so I traded it in and am now running 2 sets of speakers and a sub from a Denon DRA 800H. All I can say is it suits my ears very well. Most of my use is from Apple Music, Spotify and Blu-ray as well as YouTube with the occasional CD thrown in. It’s a great value for money Amp.
If I were you, I’d keep listening to options: the LS 50 wireless might be around as a good deal as their successor is now on sale. Yes, the LSX could be good for you but connectivity is more limited than its big brother - I also read somewhere else on the forum that a successor to the LSX is in the offing soon.
Then again, you might think about some active speakers such as those made by Adam. Adam Audio T7V Studio Monitors, Pair at Gear4music
Marry these to something like the Yamaha WXC 50 and you’ll get a pretty decent sound:
Yamaha WXC-50 Wireless Streamer

I hope this long ramble helps.
 

The latest video from AVForums

AVForums Movies Podcast: Streaming Theatrical Releases And The Future Of Cinema
Subscribe to our YouTube channel
Support AVForums with Patreon

Top Bottom