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IFA 2015 Exclusive: A visit to the Sony stand, featuring a very special guest... Qobuz!

By Barry Moore |

As it does every year, this autumn, Sony took possession of an entire hall at Berlin’s IFA exhibition. As we do every year, Qobuz made the trip to the German Hi-Fi wonderland… but beware! This time, we were no mere spectators, but rather active participants in Sony’s audio showcase. You can check out what happened in our reporter’s immersive report below...

An emotional trip! We hold back nothing, as we take you through a summary of our trip to the Sony stand at IFA Berlin, offering a guided tour. You will feel as if you were there!

Our brave reporter, frightened by both the noise and the crowd, attempts to make his way towards the Hi-Res section of the Sony stand. Surprises abound... and to start with, we press on to the portable speakers compatible with Hi-Res (such as the X99 et X88 which have already featured on our pages), and to the big news that this stand includes three new Hi-Res in-house players. These are the NW-A25/16 Go (announced for retail at around ?280), the A27/64 Go, and the jewel in the crown, the high-class NW-ZX100HN (?700), which comes readily equipped with audiophile components!

Next up, we stop in front of the compact Hi-Res CAS-1 product range (retailing at around ?850), which is compatible with Bluetooth (Sony LDAC) and NFC. The device contains two USB ports (A and B), alongside a pair of output gain adjustable headphones. Displaying no inhibitions, Sony has also introduced a Hi-Res car audio system, which has a central unit called the XS-GSW121D. This contains amplifiers and speakers, all compatible with 24-bit audio and DSD (no set price fixed yet; product launched in 2016).

Never before has a global manufacturer put so much into its development of Hi-Res sound. And in addition, Sony has made its Bluetooth foolproof by integrating its LDAC algorithm. It will be launched with total noise reduction for its Hi-Res A25 and A27 players. Hard to ask for more.

Some pictures of the exhibition can be found below. We are, above all, excited to announce the beginning of Qobuz's relationship with Sony, as they unveil a prototype for a Hi-Res device supporting the Qobuz application. More information to follow soon: stay tuned!

PP Garcia for Qobuz 2015 / @ppgarcia75

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