Marantz shapes up with Model M1 streaming stereo amplifier

posted on Tuesday, 28th May 2024 by Steve May

Hi-fi  Media Rooms 

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Marantz wants to change the shape of home Hi-Fi, with the launch of the M1 - a compact wireless music streaming amplifier.

Able to power most residential loudspeakers, from standmounts to floorstanders, or ceiling or in-wall speakers, the all-in-one has a broad range of connectivity, allowing it to be placed underneath a TV and connected to a vinyl record player.

The Model M1 also has Heos built-in, allowing it to function within a larger Heos multi room music system.

It boasts a 2x100W (into 8 ohm) stereo output. There’s also a subwoofer output for those looking for a 2.1 music solution.Configuration options allow for full adjustment of both high-pass-filter and low-pass-filter frequencies independently, along with +/-15dB of subwoofer level trim.

High-resolution music support is enabled for streaming services and networked devices, with 24-bit/192kHz PCM and provision for DSD.

The Model M1 operates in the digital domain from end to end, and takes advantage of proprietary DSP technologies built in, including Marantz Music Digital Filtering (MMDF), first developed for the brand’s reference-grade audiophile CD players, and often associated with the brand’s warm sonic signature.

Inside CI had an early opportunity to get hands-on with the Model M1 at the recent AWE Open day, and was impressed by both its feature set and form factor.

Bluetooth, Spotify Connect and AirPlay2 are all supported. Planned updates include Tidal and Roon Ready support. Connections options include USB-A, built-in phono stage or external phono amplifier via line-level analogue inputs, and HDMI eARC.

To simplify AV connectivity, there’s onboard Dolby Digital+ decoding. A Dialogue Enhancer option is provided to make voices more easily discernible when listening at low volume levels. There’s also Virtual Dolby processing designed to create a three-dimensional sound field from two-channel content.

Integrators should note that two Model M1s can be installed side-by-side in a standard 19-inch equipment rack. Effective passive thermal management means no intrusive fan noise or issues with heat build-up in cabinets. A threaded mounting point on the rear of the amplifier means the unit can also be mounted on a wall bracket.

The Model M1 is compatible with a wide range of third-party control systems,
including Crestron, Control4 and URC. HEOS also accommodates IR learning, allowing third party remote controllers to be paired.

The Marantz Model M1 retails for £900 ($1,000 / €1,000).

Steve May

Inside CI Editor Steve May is a freelance technology specialist who also writes for T3TechRadarHome Cinema Choice, Trusted Reviews and The Luxe Review.

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