Even as more people find themselves looking to their phone as their one and only source of music, there are plenty of people who think a phone — even with high-quality headphones — can never compare to a decent stereo system. This is the exact type of crowd Rotel is targeting with its new 14 Series amplifiers and CD player.
“Stereo playback is enjoying a renaissance, particularly among younger people,” Doug Henderson, president of Rotel’s distributor, the B&W Group, said in a statement. “These new Rotel components offer everything anyone needs today – USB for PC and iOS, Bluetooth, and phono are among the connection options. Most importantly, they look and sound fantastic.”
Related: Rotel RA-1570 review
The star of the new 14 Series is the A14 integrated amplifier, rated at 80 watts per channel at 8 ohms and featuring a 32-bit/768kHz DAC. The standard analog inputs, including a phono input, are here, as is Bluetooth with aptX, but where the receiver really shines is its collection of digital inputs. There are two each of coaxial and optical inputs, as well as USB, which support high-resolution playback of 32-bit/384kHz PCM, as well as DSD and DSD 2X.
If you don’t need all that power, the A12 amplifier keeps the same look and many of the same features, but at a more affordable price. This model offers a claimed 60 watts per channel paired with a Wolfson DAC, as well as Bluetooth and the same range of analog inputs offered on the A14. Dual coaxial and optical inputs are here, as is a USB connection, though it offers more modest 24-bit/192 kHz playback.
Not only does the CD14 CD player share its looks with the other models in the 14 Series, but it maintains the same focus on high performance as well. Featuring a 24-bit/192 kHz Wolfson DAC and independent digital and analog power supplies, the CD14 aims to bring out even the smallest details in the music lover’s collection.
“Rotel set the bar for affordable CD players many years ago,” Henderson said “While others have abandoned the format, music lovers still maintain large collections. The CD14 will let them hear those discs at their best”
All three units in the new 14 Series line will be available beginning in October of this year. The A14 amplifier will retail for $1,300, with the A12 priced at $900. The CD14 CD player will have a suggested retail price of $600.