Panasonic introduced the Technics SL-G700 SACD/Network Media Player back in 2018 and the digital audio player offered both CD playback and streaming capabilities. The first generation source was well received but the digital world has advanced rather significantly in 4 years and the unit was due for an upgrade
Technics has announced the SL-G700’s replacement, the SL-G700M2.
What’s New with the SL-G700M2
To get started, some of the improvements made over the previous G700 include:
- Reinforced power supply (new noise reduction circuit)
- Characteristic (phase/amplitude) optimization on analog outputs
- Qobuz and Roon updates (via forthcoming firmware updates)
- Addition of a USB-B port on the rear panel for playback of compatible music files from PCs, and network audio servers.
- New Remote with direct Open/Close, MQA & Dimmer buttons
- Identical look to the previous SL-G700 except for a slightly different control knob.
Let’s dig into more details.
The G700M2 supports Super Audio CD playback, which is becoming rarer these days, despite its excellent audio quality. The player’s “Pure Disc Playback” mode turns off all circuits except those required for Super Audio CD/CD playback to reduce the internal noise and enhance sound quality.
The G700M2 supports MQA and is capable of full decoding playback of MQA files and MQA-CDs.
Additional high-resolution formats that are supported include WAV/AIFF up to 384 kHz/32-bit, FLAC/ALAC up to 384kHz/24-bit, and DSD up to 11.2MHz file playback.
Streaming capabilities include Chromecast built-in, which enables a wide range of music streaming services from Google Chromecast-enabled apps, as well as AirPlay 2. Wi-Fi® and Bluetooth® wireless connections are also supported.
As mentioned previously, the SL-G700M2 is newly equipped with a USB-B port that allows connection to a network audio server or PC for playback of high-resolution sound sources from the connected device.
Tip: There is also a front panel USB Type-A port for connections of USB Flash Drives.
Other connections include RCA unbalanced and XLR balanced analog audio outputs, as well as Digital Optical/Digital Coaxial Audio inputs and outputs. There is also a front panel ¼-inch headphone output.
New Digital/Analogue Signal Processing Technology
In furthering digital audio signal processing technology for the G700M2, Technics’ goal has been to achieve phase alignment and ideal impulse response. Starting with LAPC (Load Adaptive Phase Calibration), which was first incorporated in the SE-R1 in 2014, the technology is now included in the SL-G700M2’s High Precision Coherent D/A Converter. Digital values to analog signals are converted with precision and output to an amplifier.
The process includes:
Coherent Processing: This improves the reproducibility of signals by minimizing amplitude and phase deviations that occur throughout the D/A conversion process for signals up to 192 kHz PCM using proprietary digital signal processing. As a result of this processing with purity of the sound is increased, and the sound image is clearer.
Tip: DSD signals such as Super Audio CD® are input directly to the DAC without performing this processing.
D/A converter in Dual Monaural Configuration: The dual ESS ES9026PRO is included in the DAC chip. The symmetrical placement of one L/R unit on each side and their independent transmission reduce interference and faithfully reproduce the sound image and musical space contained in the sound source or file.
Proprietary discrete amplifier circuit: The filter circuit after the D/A conversion uses an amplifier circuit with a unique discrete configuration that provides higher responsiveness and S/N ratio, reproducing even the most subtle sounds more accurately.
High-Speed Switching/Multi-Stage Silent Power Supply
The SL-G700M2 is equipped with a Multi-Stage Silent Power Supply that provides thorough noise suppression as well as high-speed switching of approximately 300 kHz. This is the same technology used for the analog circuits of the SU-R1000 reference-class integrated amplifier. By increasing the switching frequency, the interference of noise on the music playback bandwidth is reduced.
Cabinet Design and Chassis
The SL-G700M2 is divided into four sections inside the chassis. The power supply, digital interface, analog circuitry, and disk drive sections, are independent. This suppresses interference between circuits and reduces sound quality degradation.
The SACD/CD disc drive has a three-layer chassis with vibration-damping and quiet construction, including a disc tray made of die-cast aluminum.
The exterior features a hairline-finished 7 mm-thick aluminum front panel and 3 mm-thick aluminum side panels, as well as an engraved Technics logo for a high-grade design and finish.
Availability and Pricing
The SL-G700M2 will be available from Authorized Technics dealers for an MSRP of $3,499.99 at the end of January 2023.
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