Wouldn't you love a new system that was completely modern, highly capable, great sounding and easily affordable. Yes – you can have it all.
making wireless work for you.
We're all about simple and effective solutions for your audio needs. It's also about giving you choice – this doesn't have to mean a bewildering array of options. Rather, a clear set of alternatives that will fill a varied range of requirements balancing sound quality, features and cost.
You can learn about how we make wireless work for you. If you have been thinking about wireless but it seemed too hard, costly or compromised, then this article will show you thats it's easy, inexpensive and can sound great.
a new start
NuForce Icon2 & Monitor Audio BX2 System package
Best described as 'the heart of your digital life' the diminutive NuForce Icon2 redefines our idea of what an amplifier should do, look and sound like. The match with the new award winning entry level speaker from Monitor Audio - the Bronze BX2 - is ideal. The efficient and extended characteristics of the BX2 compliment the output of the Icon2 delivering what can only be described as great sound. Before we even start to consider the remarkable affordability of the system - only $1300 including cables!
Let's take a closer look at the NuForce. Introduced late last year, the Icon2 is a remarkable device - featuring high performance digital to analogue conversion via USB for direct connection to any computer or laptop, two conventional line inputs allowing connection of iPod, radio or even turntable (more about these choices later), outputs for speakers (with cables included), to a subwoofer or second amplifier and last but not least, a very good headphone amplifier for more personal listening. How NuForce pack all this into such a small package and make it sound so good is the really interesting story.
The Icon2 is supremely power efficient - unlike any conventional amplifier. NuForce have solved the problems surrounding switching power supplies and have an amplifier design that doesn’t have heat dissipation issues - which means it can be smaller, cost less to build and ship, last longer and sound better (because of reduced mains interference, shorter signal paths and high quality components).
Simplicity is the key - the Icon2 doesn’t have remote control, tone controls, multiple channels. Given the features included systems like iTunes, this has become a non-issue. You'll love the small size, the easy connection and cool colours - silver, blue, red and black (safe choice - it goes with everything) Take this as a statement of political intent: We'd rather sell 10 little $500 amplifiers to individuals that are thrilled to get sound better than they expected for less from a brand they might never have heard of, than sell one $5000 amplifier.
While you could team the Icon2 with smaller speakers, we think that if you’ll quickly warm to the new Monitor Audio model - they didn't pick up the 'Product of the Year' award from What HiFi in the UK buy not being exceptionally capable, well build and finished - again a choice of 3 woodgrains - dark walnut, light oak or black ash.
So what else would you hook the Icon2/BX2 system up to? Any computer via USB is just a start What about the new Project Essential USB turntable as an obvious choice for unreconstructed record enthusiasts? - the twist being you can both connect this directly to the Icon as the Essential has its own built in phono stage. And USB so you can start on storing your record albums on computer for playback without ever having to turn the record over. For a radio, look no further than any of the Tivoli models - they all have line outputs and are exceptional as tuners - not to mention happily affordable. An iPod via any competent dock is another obvious source - the dock both keeps your iPod charged up and sounds significantly better than coming out of the headphone socket - again the Tivoli option with a bevy of finish choices make it an obvious choice.
You are not without upgrade options either. As much as we love the Icon2 for all it can do, NuForces own HDP ($800) preamp in combination with the Icon amp ($350) is a whole different ball-game again. And the Monitor Audio Silver series RX1 speakers are likewise another step up. You could run another pair of speakers (or bi-amp the BX2s) with the simple addition of another Icon amp. You'd be surprised how far you can go - both Sonus faber and the Monitor Audio Gold GX series speakers may cost around 4x more than the Icon2, but they serve to show you just how good this little wonder really is. Make the most of our experience if you'd like look at any variations on the theme - we've got plenty of options that we can show you to customize the system to perfectly fit your personal tastes and requirements.
But let's not lose sight of the value theme. Where we might have previously considered a 3 piece system, you can now do more with 2. Monitor Audio have ruthlessly plundered their more costly ranges and created a speaker that does what we would have been happy with at twice the price only a couple of years ago. The NuForce Icon delivers full 96kHz/24 bit capability - far in excess of CD and harnesses revolutionary design pilfered directly from their far more costly reference amplifiers. It wasn’t that long ago we had to spend at least 4 times more to achieve a result that still fell short of the Icon2's performance.
We'd love to help you get into this little system - we include a good set of speaker cables, terminated in gold plated banana plugs and USB lead. Freight is free* anywhere in the country if you'd like to take up our internet banking option. You've got the choice of all available finishes in both amp and speakers. And you even get as little something extra via our WWF Hectors Dolphin sponsorship program. So drop us an e mail or give us a call now on 0800 909 101 and find out what we can do for you.
NuForce Icon2 & Monitor Audio BX2 System package - NZ$1300 including GST and delivery*
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