Sony Targets High-End Audiophile Performance with Firewire-Connected 9000 Series Components

At Sony Europe’s roll-out of consumer audio products for 2003 in Berlin last week, Sony addressed the high-end of its range with three new components, designated as the 9000 Series.

The line includes a multi-channel digital amplifier (TA-DA9000ES), a multi-channel Super Audio CD (SACD) player (SCD-XA9000ES), and a 1000 Watt powered subwoofer (SA-WX900).

The 9000 Series components are presented in the characteristic gold-toned Sony ES (Extremely High Standard) family style. They are scheduled for availability throughout Europe in August (the subwoofer) and October (amplifier and SACD player) of this year.

Both the TA-DA9000ES amplifier and the SCD-XA9000ES SACD player will include i.LINK, Sony’s name for the IEEE-1384 digital connection standard (branded as Firewire by Apple Computer and others).

The new top-of-the-line Sony SACD player will provide an i.LINK (IEEE-1394) interface for easy connection to other 9000 Series components

In Sony’s scheme of things, the i.LINK interface will be used to carry digital data streams between player and processor, including the Direct Stream Digital (DSD) signal of the SACD format. This means you get a high-quality, single-cable connection between the units, without the need for a 6-line analog connection as on typical SACD and DVD-Audio set-ups available today.

The SCD-XA9000ES will be Sony’s new flagship SACD player, representing the state-of-the-art in multi-channel and stereo Super Audio CD, as well as conventional CD playback technology. The new player will use a tri-powered D/A converter system, promising optimal reproduction of the wide frequency range associated with Super Audio CD, and significantly reduced noise levels.

A new dual-laser pick-up, developed to read the different Super Audio CD and CD layers, will also handle CD-R and CD-RW discs. The player also features Sony’s Multi-Channel Speaker Management System (bass management), gold-plated line-out jacks, and a dedicated headphone jack. A dual R-core transformer takes care of the separate power supply requirements of the audio and digital circuits. The output specification includes one optical and one coaxial digital output as well as a 5.1 multi-channel analogue output.

The TA-DA9000ES processor/amplifier will offer seven independent channels of amplification, each with a power output of 200 Watts. It will be equipped to decode Dolby ProLogic II, Dolby Digital EX, DTS-ES, and DTS 96/24 used on DVD-Video.

The new top-of-the-line Sony SA-WX900 subwoofer speaker will be powered by a 1000 Watt digital amplifier “designed to ensure the ultimate bass performance for every type of music from reggae to the emotion of the most complex orchestral works.”

Sony Europe Web Site

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