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This year Simaudio has been active in releasing exciting new products in both the analog and digital areas as well as producing an unusual power supply upgrade path for several of its high-end preamplifiers and digital products.
The Neo 260D is unusual in that it is available both as a CD transport for $2000 and as a full-fledged CD player for $3000 with multiple digital inputs that can be used to stream music from other sources. The digital board that provides for the digital inputs and converts the transport into a CD player can be added at any time for $1000.
Thanks to its 32-bit processing engine, upsampling capabilities, hallmark Moon oversized power supplies, and elaborate analog stages, the Neo 260D's sonic performance is without equal in its price category. For music enthusiasts who simply want to play their CD's, the Neo 260D is the perfect solution. Borrowing much of its technology from the more exotic and costlier Evolution series 650D and incorporating the latest advancements in digital audio, the 260D extracts every last musical detail from the disc. As mentioned above, adding the 32-bit DAC allows for direct streaming of music from your computer. You can also use the digital inputs to, for example, enjoy satellite movie channels, Internet radio, and Blu-ray movie sound tracks with the audio fidelity of your music system.
The significant design features of the 260D include:
Simaudio has also released the Moon 820S Power Supply ($8000) in the Evolution series. This is the large and eagerly anticipated power supply that offers an upgrade path for customers of certain Evolution series models. It elevates the performance of Evolution series components to whole new levels. This has been done by making use of everything they know about power supply design with respect to circuit layout, filtration and regulation. Featuring state-of-the-art, custom-built dual toroidal transformers, choke filtering, and their own M-R2S (Moon Reference Regulation System) circuit, the 820S is capable of doing what was once thought of as virtually impossible, improving on the already-superlative power supplies built into Evolution products. They do this by further reducing the noise floor while maintaining an even greater voltage stability. The sheer "blackness" of the musical background created by the addition of the 820S is far superior to that of the stock power supplies. Not surprisingly, making a meaningful and worthwhile improvement to products that are already excellent requires painstaking R&D, creative ingenuity, and a passion for perfection. This power supply is equipped with two sets of outputs. Each output provides DC power for both analog circuitry (audio) and digital circuitry (controller, CD transport, front panel displays). It can upgrade the performance of any one, or any combination of two of the following Moon Evolution products simultaneously: the 740P Preamplifier, the 650D and 750D DAC/CD Transports, and the 610LP and 810LP Phono Preamplifiers.
The final new product this year is the Evolution 760A power amplifier at $8000. It was intended to give users the performance of the more expensive Evolution power amplifiers at a much lower price. This is the first amplifier to be housed in the slim Evolution series chassis, making it unusually compact, yet very heavy. It is a dual-mono, class-A/B design with balanced differential circuitry. Output power is conservatively rated at 130watts/channel into 8 ohms, 260 watts/channel into 4 ohms, and, like all Evolution amplifiers, it is effortless into 2-ohm loads. Sonically, the 760A exhibits all of the traits for which Moon products are known: an airy, detailed and open top end, transparency and 3-dimensionality in the midrange, and robust, powerful authority in the bass. In a nutshell, it amplifies music with all the harmonic accuracy, richness, and dimensionality of a live musical performance. The 760A has both balanced (XLR) and single-ended (RCA) inputs, but will sound best when driven via its XLR inputs. The heat sinks are crafted from custom-made aircraft-grade aluminum extrusions and covered with thermally transparent paint which will not fade or discolor over time. It is also DC-coupled with zero global feedback. At $8000, it is the most affordable Evolution series power amplifier yet.
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