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Almost as good to look at as it is to listen to, the Technics SL-G700M2 is very nearly the perfect digital audio solution (for those who have the wherewithal…)


  • Poised, eloquent and engaging sound
  • Built like the proverbial brick outhouse
  • Thoroughly specified


  • Won’t slot into just any old system
  • Control app is nothing special…
  • …and neither is the fascia display

Key Features

  • DACESS ES9026PRO digital-to-analogue converter
  • ConnectivityUnbalanced and balanced analogue outputs


You want to be able to stream music – but you don’t want to give up on your collection of compact discs just yet.

And you want to be able to enjoy both of these methods of accessing music without adding too much equipment to your existing audio system. Technics has the solution – but it’s going to cost you…


The Technics SL-G700M2 network/super audio CD player goes for £2899 – unless you’re familiar with one or another of the popular online search engines, that is. In the United States you’ll have to part with $3499 or so, while in Australia it’ll cost you around AU$4999.

Plenty of money, in other words, for a network music streamer – even one with the added bonus of an optical disc-drive. The Technics SL-G700M2 needs to be something special…


  • 7mm ‘hairline’ aluminium fascia
  • Bank-vault build quality…
  • …with the weight to prove it.

At 98 x 430 x 407mm (HWD), the SL-G700M2 is basically standard kit-rack size – although maybe a little deeper than the norm. And as a member of Technics’ Grand Class of stereo products, it is built to an extremely high standard from premium materials and finished, well, flawlessly. If you’re after a music player that seems ready to survive a significant explosion, here’s the machine you’re looking for.

The chassis is a four-section design, featuring 3mm thick aluminium side panels and a 7mm thick aluminium front plate. The disc-tray, too, which is smooth-sliding and beautifully damped, is of die-cast aluminium too.

All the fascia controls operate with chunky certainty – the ‘turn/push’ multi-control dial on the top right is a straightforward pleasure to use. The SL-G700M2 is put together with minimal panel-gaps, and in every respect looks and feels like a high-end device. Which is, I guess, exactly what you should expect from a product costing this much money.

Technics SL-G700M2 onboard operation
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

It’s a pity this robust and uncompromising design doesn’t extend to the player’s control options, though. The remote control handset, while perfectly usable, doesn’t feel anything like as upmarket as the machine it controls.

The Audio Center control app is, to be charitable, functional rather than in any way attractive – and it doesn’t even come into play until you’ve used Google Home to set the SL-G700M2 up in the first place. And while it’s fair to say that the app of your favourite music streaming service will display album artwork and what-have-you, the display on the Technics’ fascia is rudimentary – monochrome, not especially high-resolution and not especially big.


  • 32-bit/384kHz and DSD256 ESS ES9026PRO DAC
  • CD, HDCD, super audio CD and MQA-CD playback
  • Balanced and unbalanced analogue outputs

Stuffing two product’s-worth of functionality into a single enclosure is bound to mean quite extensive specification – and that’s the case with the Technics SL-G700M2. Both on the inside and the outside, there’s plenty going on.

Under the hood, the Technics features an ESS ES9026PRO digital-to-analogue converter that’s compatible with every worthwhile digital audio file type and is good up to 32-bit/384kHz and DSD256 resolution. It’s embedded in what Technics calls a Coherent Processing design that seeks to reduce gain and phase discrepancies (along with other digital filter-derived artefacts). It’s switchable in the control app, so its efficacy can be easily established.

Technics SL-G700M2 remote control
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

Technics has also deployed the Multi-Stage Silent Power Supply first encountered in the SU-R1000 Reference Class stereo amplifier that sells for £8K or so. It uses high-speed switching circuitry, and splits the power supply between the player’s analogue and digital sections – the intention is to reduce noise on the supply feed.

Getting the digital audio information on board in the first place can be done in a number of different ways, of course. First of all, there’s that optical disc-drive – as well as being able to handle bog-standard compact discs, it’s also good with the rather more esoteric HDCD, MQA-CD and Super Audio CD – so your legacy collection is catered for across the board.

Technics SL-G700M2 connections
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

Other physical sources can be plugged in using either of the USB-A slots (there’s one on the fascia, next to a 6.3mm headphone socket, and the other is on the rear panel) or the USB-B input. There is also an Ethernet socket, along with digital coaxial and digital optical inputs.

Wireless stuff, meanwhile, is handled by dual-band Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.2 (with SBC and AAC codec compatibility), Apple AirPlay 2 and Chromecast. Spotify Connect and internet radio are available, and other high-profile music streaming services can be accessed via their native apps.

You’ve a couple of options when it comes to getting sound out again, too. For connection to an amplifier there are unbalanced RCA sockets and balanced XLRs, and there are also digital optical and digital coaxial outputs too. These digital outputs are for use if you’ve somehow got access to a digital-to-analogue converter that’s more effective than the one in this player.  

Sound Quality

  • Balanced, convincing sound
  • Great control and integration
  • Requires a moment’s system-matching

It almost goes without saying that the Technics SL-G700M2 does its best work when given the best stuff to work with. As far as this test is concerned, that means a 24-bit/96kHz FLAC file of Chick Corea’s Return to Forever and a DSD64 file of Wham!’s Everything She Wants from some network-attached storage and a 24-bit/48kHz Qobuz stream of What Was I Made For? by Billie Eilish. This sort of stuff allows the player to show exactly what it’s got.

Which turns out to be plenty. The Technics is a poised, beautifully balanced listen that gives every area of the frequency range equal weighting – nothing is overstated, nothing is underplayed. Integration from the bottom to the top is smoothly achieved, and at every point in the frequency range the SL-G700M2 is alive to the most minor, most transient details.

This isn’t at the expense of the big picture, though – this player is adept at unifying even the most complex and/or disparate recordings into a convincing whole.

Technics SL-G700M2 front display
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

Low-end control is sufficient to keep rhythms on the front font and tempos naturalistic – there’s momentum to the way the Technics presents music, but it’s not about injecting an artificial sense of excitement just for the sake of it.

There’s ample bite and shine at the opposite end of the frequency range, to the point that the SL-G700M2 won’t thank you for introducing it into a system that’s similarly assertive at the top end. In the middle, voices have their character, attitude and energy articulated in full. This device communicates in spades through the midrange, and it sounds direct and positive as a result.

Dynamic headroom is considerable when it comes to dealing with big changes in volume or intensity. The harmonic variations apparent in the Chick Corea recording are given full expression, too. And the Technics always remains in control, unflustered by hectic recordings and able to peer deep into unaccompanied instruments in order to report on even the most minor dynamic changes.

Technics SL-G700M2 inputs
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

Switch to some content via compact disc (an SACD copy of Nick Drake’s Northern Sky and an HDCD of The Flaming Lips’ Waitin’ for a Superman) and the news is very similar – and so equally good. The SL-G700M2 is an insightful, entertaining and nicely considered listen, able to generate a big, well-organised and utterly believable soundstage with more than enough space on it for even the wedding-cake Flaming Lips mix to get a bit of elbow room.

In fact, no matter how your source your music, this Technics serves it up in even-handed fashion. About the only way to really provoke it is to make a Bluetooth connection and then stream some squashed, poverty-spec stuff from Apple Music or something. But you didn’t spend almost £3K on a streamer to behave like that, did you? 

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Should you buy it?

You want extensive, high-performance functionality from just one box

Streaming services, network-attached storage, compact discs, flash drives… if it’s got digital music on it, the Technics can handle it

Your current system is on the treble-happy side

It’s not as if it becomes feral, but the Technics is more than assertive enough at the top end without having this trait compounded by its partners

Final Thoughts

Between its evocative brand name, its robust build quality, its extensive functionality and its sweetly expressive, informative sound it makes, the Technics SL-G700M2 is almost everything I want from a digital audio player. Sort out the scandalously humdrum control app and I’ll be all in…

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Tested over several days

Tested with real world use


What CD playback does the Technics SL-G700M2 support?

The SL-G700M2 can playback CD, HDCD, super audio CD and MQA-CDs.

Full specs

Size (Dimensions)
Release Date
Model Number
Frequency Range
Audio Formats
Power Consumption
Remote Control

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