The Technics brand, owned by Panasonic, has been making quite a splash since its re-launch in 2014, including the introduction of its high-end R1 Reference Class Series components at the Munich High End show this past May. See Robert Harley’s Munich show report for more details on that series.
Technics is continuing to make waves with a quartet of innovative hi-fi-product launches that debuted at IFA in Berlin in late 2015: a network audio amplifier, a music server, an all-in-one hi-fi system, and over-the-ear headphones.
Technics Grand Class G30 Series
Comprising just two components thus far—the SU-G30 Network Audio Amplifier and ST-G30 Music Server—the Technics Grand Class Series combines reference-class digital technology with optimized circuitry and system configurations.
SU-G30 Network Audio Amplifier
Based on the R1 Reference Class’ (see above) technical concepts and highly efficient circuit structure, the SU-G30 has a built-in network playback circuit engineered to remove jitter and background noise via the JENO (jitter elimination and noise-shaping optimization) engine. The amplifier section delivers 100Wpc into 4 ohms (50Wpc into 8 ohms), and features a GaN-FET driver to perform high-speed switching with minimal loss for greater transparency, and an LAPC (load adaptive phase calibration) circuit to facilitate loudspeaker pairing. A low-distortion switching power supply helps minimize the distortion that frequency fluctuations and load shifts can cause.
The SU-G30 also boasts a user interface and app that mirror the component’s minimalist design approach and ease of use. The SU-G30 amp supports a wide range of input sources, including hi-res formats of up 384kHz/32-bit. As one would expect, the SU-G30 is also compatible with various online music streaming services, in addition to digital audio (DNLA, USB, Bluetooth, etc.) and analog (moving-magnet phonostage) sources.
- 100Wpc into 4 ohms
- 50Wpc into 8 ohms
- 430mm x 98.5mm x 424.5mm/approx. 11 kg
- Two digital coaxial, digital optical, analog line, USB-A, USB-B, phono (mm), Ethernet terminal headphone, WiFi, Bluetooth, AirPlay
Digital input formats
- Digital coaxial: PCM up to 192kHz/24-bit
- Digital optical: PCM up to 96kHz/24-bit
- DLNA, USB-A, FLAC, WAV, AIFF, ALAC up to 192kHz/24-bit; AAC up to 96kHz 320kbps MP3, WMA up to 48kHz 320kbps; DSD 2.8MHz/5.6MHz
- USB-B: PCM up to 384kHz/32-bit; DSD 2.8MHz, 5.6MHz, 11.2MHz with asynchronous transfer mode
ST-G30 Music Server
The new Technics ST-G30 Music Server comes equipped with a solid-state drive with proprietary digital noise isolation architecture for jitter and noise reduction, and low-noise USB transfer.
The ST-G30 also features an internal CD drive manufactured exclusively by Technics that allows data to be captured without compression via “Bit-Perfect” CD ripping. This technology also re-adjusts read-error characteristics, performs read retries, and carries out comparative verification to ensure that ripped copies are unaffected by minor imperfections on the CD.
For those who like to create custom music playlists for network listening, the ST-G30’s user interface lets you create a library from your smartphone app, as well as edit tags, tweak settings, and more—making it easy to enjoy your favorite tunes the way you want to hear them.
- 430mm x 98.5mm x 388.5mm/approx. 10.5 kg
- USB 3.0, USB 2.0, Ethernet terminal
Digital ouput formats
- USB audio output: PCM up to 384kHz/32-bi
- DSD 2.8MHz, 5.6MHz, and 11.2MHz
- FLAC/WAV encode
- 2.5-inch SATA SSD (replaceable)
OTTAVA Premium Class SC-500
The all-in-one OTTAVA SC-C500 hi-fi system combines the compact SU-C501 CD stereo amplifier and powerful OTTAVA speakers with high-resolution audio support. Incorporating many of Technics’ groundbreaking components—such as the JENO engine, LAPC, and Battery Driven Clock Generator—the SU-C501 is able to deliver an audio experience typically associated with significantly larger amplifiers.
Small and sleek, this next-generation system boasts a contemporary, compact design along with high-performance sound. The speaker cabinet is designed to enhance inter-driver coherence and timbral quality, from the tweeter’s treble through the woofer’s bass.
The OTTAVA speaker system has a spiral acoustic port designed to produce rich and powerful low end. Low/mid-frequency sounds are diffused by a reflector for clarity and resonance, while tweeters are arranged in a multi-angled configuration to deliver crisp and accurate high frequencies. As a result, the SC-500 system delivers immersive sound from a hi-fi system that’s suitable even for smaller spaces. Whether you’re listening via hi-res network audio, CD, USB memory device, USB-DAC, or smartphone, the latest Technics smartphone app makes control easy and efficient.
- Emotive acoustic technology
- Breezing speaker
- Spiral tube twin drive
- Main unit: 360mm x 91mm x 248.5mm/approx. 3.9kg
- Speaker: 110mm x 277mm x 110mm/approx. 1.9kg
- Digital optical input, USB-A input, USB-B input, Ethernet terminal, headphone, WiFi, Bluetooth (AAC, SBC), AirPlay
Digital Input Format
- Digital optical: PCM up to 96kHz/24-bit
- DLNA, USB-A: FLAC, WAV, AIFF, ALAC up to 192kHz 24-bit, AAC up to 98kHz 320kbps; MP3, WMA up to 48kHz 320kbps, DSD 2.8Mhz, 5.6MHz
- USB-B: PCM up to 192kHz/32-bit; DSD 2.8MHz, 5.6MHz with asynchronous transfer mode
Technics’ new EAH-T700 headphones are closed, over-the-ear, premium ’phones that feature two-way drive (a 14mm super-tweeter, and a high-linearity 50mm dynamic driver) for greater frequency range.
The EAH-T700’s angled-driver system delivers accuracy, with each sound discretely and authentically reproduced within a natural soundfield. Unwanted vibration is also minimized thanks to the floating dynamic driver, anti-vibration frame, and rigid aluminum housing.
The EAH-T700s come in an attractive metal finish—and the headband slider, horizontal swivel, and ergonomic 3D ear pads adjust to suit any listening position.
Driver and Diaphragm
- 50mm dynamic driver and 14mm super-tweeter
- Advanced MLF, aluminum cone