The Harman Luxury Audio Group had several rooms at THE Show Newport this year. One of them was featuring Mark Levinson electronics, starting with a No. 519 audio player ($20,000), which can play CDs, networked storage, streaming services, high-res digital inputs, and Bluetooth wireless sources. Next in the signal chain was a No. 526 dual-mono preamp/DAC ($20,000) that can accommodate up to 24-bit/192 kHz PCM and double-speed DSD with pure class-A operation and fully balanced signal path. Two No. 536 monoblock power amps ($15,000 each) completed the electronics, providing 400 watts into 8 ohms or 800W into 4 ohms with class-AB operation.
Each amp was powering a JBL K2 S9900 3-say speaker ($43,000/pair in rosewood, $55,000 in a premium finish). These beauties include a 1″ magnesium compression tweeter, 4″ magnesium compression midrange driver, and 15″ pulp-cone woofer to achieve a specified frequency response from 48 Hz to 50 kHz (low-frequency extension to 33 Hz) and a sensitivity of 93 dB/W/m with a nominal impedance of 8 ohms.
I listened to a variety of music on this system, and it sounded wonderful—clean and clear with lots of air and no hint of congestion in any frequency range. It was a truly beautiful sound, as it should be for a system price of $125,000!