AXPONA: T+A Brings the A-Team

T+A elektroakustik GmbH & Co. brought the A-team to the 2022 AXPONA, including American rep Senior Vice President of Sales and Operations David Schultz, Chief Operations Officer (and heir apparent) Conradin Amft, and Founder and CEO Siegfried Amft. During a light Saturday breakfast in the big T+A room, the elder Amft briefed the Stereophile team on T+A’s status and plans; expect some big announcements at High End Munich later this month.

At AXPONA, T+A had most of its lines (perhaps all; I’m not sure) on passive display—the massive, impressively constructed HV series, the sleek, midrange R series, and the new 200 series, which stuffs much of the goodness of the HV series—including the higher rail voltage, into a smaller, cheaper package. The 200 series was the focus of Amft’s presentation and formed the core of the active system here. Four components comprise T+A’s 200 series: The MP 200 Multisource Streamer/CD Player ($5700), the DAC 200 D/A converter/preamplifier ($6900), the A 200 stereo power amplifier ($4900), and the HA 200 DAC/headphone amplifier ($9500). There’s also an HDMI module ($600), which can be added to either the DAC 200 or the HA 200.

The MP 200 does something I wish more 21st-century source components did: It gathers all digital sources (CD transport, streaming, and other digital inputs) together in a single chassis, which then sends its data—digital-only output—to a separate, stand-alone DAC.

The MP 200, though, adds a twist: terrestrial FM radio, including HD FM (and DAB for those in Europe). (I recall that the HV-series equivalent of the MP200, the MP3100 HV, which I received in 2020, also includes this surprise feature.) For streaming (wi-fi and Ethernet) the MP 200 is Roon Ready and supports common streaming services including Tidal, Qobuz, and Deezer. The MP 200 also includes the usual digital inputs—S/PDIF (coax and optical)—and supports Bluetooth.

The DAC 200 closely resembles the HA 200. Both are beauties, with stylish dB meters behind slightly domed glass, evoking a fine timepiece. Features are impressive: Via the USB input, the DAC accepts PCM data up to 768kHz and DSD up to DSD1024, with totally separate processing paths for DSD and PCM. Conversion is dual-differential with four 32-bit sigma-delta DACs in parallel per channel for PCM; DSD processing is true 1-bit, with native DSD and DoP support. There’s selectable oversampling—including NOS as an option.

The A 200 power amplifier utilizes Purifi’s Eigentakt class-D technology. It offers 250W of continuous output power per channel into 4 ohms (half that into 8 ohms) with S/N and distortion specifications you expect from Purifi’s modules, including a S/N ratio of 113dB. At 800, the damping factor is so high that there’s a switch to knock it down to 70 for best sound with certain loudspeakers.

The A 200 power amplifier was driving the Talis S300 loudspeakers ($17,500), but despite spending a lot of time in the T+A room, I didn’t get to listen much. In a brief listen from a not-optimal location in the room, I was struck by how well this compact system—even the speakers were fairly small—managed to fill up the room.

During the presentation, Siegfried Amft shared the company’s new marketing slogan: “Engineering Emotion.” Isn’t that exactly what hi-fi is about?

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