The Acoustic Research AR-M20 combines the user-friendly interface of a smartphone with the features audiophiles want—all in a super light, slim package. This wireless-enabled music player can run the apps of popular streaming services, like Tidal and Spotify, and it also includes Bluetooth for connecting to external devices. It’s equipped with the highly regarded 32-bit/384-kHz Burr-Brown PCM5242 DAC and powered by a Snapdragon 400 quad-core processor, which allows modern streaming apps to function with speed. Promising an impressive 16 hours of playback on a single charge, the AR-M20 plays a variety of high-res audio file types on internal memory, micro-SDXC card, or micro-USB memory.
Note: At checkout, choose the AR-M20 (base price) or the AR-M2 (+ $200).
Describing the sound, a Head-Fi reviewer writes, “Presentation is full-bodied and powerful, smooth and resolving, but still remains linear and carries across all the details present in the recording. The dual crystal oscillators with their variable native sample rate tackle any kind of format with apparent ease, rhythmic precision, and timing with everything from progressive psytrance to jazz instrumentals and hard rock."
Acoustic Research’s flagship digital audio player, the AR-M2 is larger than the AR-M20 and has a more powerful amplifier that’s ideal for driving demanding full-size headphones. The headphone amplifier output is brought up from 2.1 Vrms on the AR-M20 to 3.6 Vrms on the AR-M2. The DAC has also been upgraded from the Burr-Brown PCM5242 to the Burr-Brown PCM1794a, and the AR-M2 has a higher-rated battery. This player earned an "A" rating on the Stereophile "2018 Recommended Components" list.
Acoustic Research AR-M20
Acoustic Research AR-M2
Domestic orders will be shipped by Massdrop.
Estimated ship date is Nov 19, 2018 PT.
After the drop ends, payment will be collected and the group’s order will be submitted to the vendor up front, making all sales final. Check the discussion page for updates on your order.