The Artera Solus Play’s Wi-Fi networking is powered by DTS Play-Fi: an app-controlled platform enabling high-quality, whole-home wireless audio, capable of streaming hi-res music up to 24-bit/192kHz and supported by a greater range of established audio brands than any other wireless platform.
The free Play-Fi app (available for iOS, Android and Kindle Fire devices, Windows PCs and Apple and Android smartwatches) is an intuitive gateway to a wealth of music services, including Spotify, Tidal, Amazon Music, Deezer, Qobuz, HDtracks, TuneIn, iHeartRadio and SiriusXM. It is also your trusty music butler, able to serve up a streaming library stored on any DLNA-compatible NAS drive or media server on the same home network.
Favorite playlists and radio stations can be assigned as shortcut ‘presets’ within the app, while Works With Alexa support enables voice-controlled playback when the Artera Solus Play is paired with any Amazon Alexa-equipped device.
WIRELESS STREAMING TECHNOLOGY
Play-Fi supports a wide variety of file formats, including MP3, MP4A, AAC, FLAC, WAV and AIFF. In standard mode, which is optimised for multi-room bandwidth, audio is streamed at up to 16-bit/48kHz – akin to CD-quality. By engaging Play-Fi’s Critical Listening Mode, hi-res audio up to 24-bit/192kHz may be streamed to the Artera Solus Play over Wi-Fi or Ethernet cable, without transcoding or down-sampling.
There are other ways to stream music to the Artera Solus Play wirelessly, other than via the Play-Fi app. Spotify users can connect directly from the Spotify app thanks to Spotify Connect, and you can stream from smartphones and tablets without connecting to the local Wi-Fi network thanks to aptX Bluetooth.
Amp it up
The Artera Solus Play’s preamp and power amp stages incorporate balanced circuitry, short and direct signal paths and high-quality components to preserve sonic purity. Volume is adjusted in the analogue domain under microprocessor control, outputting directly to the dual-mono Class AB power amp stage which delivers 2x75W into eight ohms. To minimise distortion, the power supplies for the left and right channels are isolated from each other as well as from the rest of the system.
The discrete power amp circuits’ output stage uses a CFB (Complementary Feedback) topology in combination with conventional emitter follower circuitry. The CFB stage offers superior linearity and ensures excellent thermal stability, as the idle current is kept independent of the temperature of the output transistors. Using an emitter follower in combination with the CFB stage is an efficient way of increasing the current ability of the amplifier without compromising the advantages of the CFB circuit.
Having the emitter follower deliver additional current only when needed allows for a simpler current-limiting arrangement, which can be voltage-independent. Current limiting is under microprocessor control and programmed to allow the amplifier to supply high currents (+/- 15A) into complex loads, surpassing amplifiers that are bigger and more powerful on paper. A 300VA toroidal transformer supplies the two mono amplifiers using separate secondary windings, followed by 2x15000uF reservoir capacity per channel (60000uF in total).