TrustedReviews spotted the 6000N Play when it turned up at the Bristol Hi-Fi Show earlier this year but details about it were scarce. Audiolab has now revealed more info and stamped a price on it.
The 6000N Play is the latest addition to Audiolab’s entry-level 6000 Series hi-fi components. It’s a network audio player that can take a traditional hi-fi system and give it wireless streaming capabilities.
And those wireless abilities are extensive. Users can stream from a range of sources on the same wireless network, whether it’s a smartphone or tablet, PC, Mac, NAS drive and music server. DTS Play-Fi is available for High-res audio playback and its inclusion means the streamer can be connected to other Play-Fi devices, creating a multiroom set-up.
High-res audio support tops out at 24- bit/192kHz resolution over Wi-Fi and that’s without transcoding or down-sampling the signal.
In terms of what’s under the hood, the 6000N Play features the same ES9018 Sabre32 Reference chip used in Audiolab 6000A integrated amplifier. Through a combination of ESS Technology’s 32-bit HyperStream architecture, Time Domain Jitter Eliminator technology and bespoke circuitry, Audiolab claims the 6000N Play can deliver a sound with ultra-low noise and high dynamic range.
The network streamer plays nice with both analogue and digital systems. If you want to use it with an amplifier or a pair of active speakers, you can do so via the RCA analogue outputs.
Optical and coaxial digital connections allow for a direct line to an external DAC, or an amp with digital inputs. That means the 6000N Play can be used in conjunction with the 6000A for a combined system.
There is no remote control as the 6000N Play is operated via the Play-Fi app.* All you get for physical controls on the unit are a standby button and a set of six ‘preset’ buttons. You can stream straight from Spotify and it’s compliant with both DLNA and UPnP clients.
The Audiolab 6000N Play network audio streamer is available from May in black or silver finishes. It costs £449.95.
*The Play-fi app is available on iOS, Android, Kindle Fire platforms, as well as Apple and Android smartwatches and Windows PCs.
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