Questyle is becoming quite the staple name at the Munich High-End Show. They use it as their annual platform to launch new products and like most companies probably catch up with their international dealers. This year was no exception and it was one of the first times that they were letting the general public touch (and listen) to two of their latest products. These were the CMA400i and QP2R. While it is lovely to catch up with Alden (sales) and Jason (designer) every year, it was also a pleasant surprise that this year we got to met Steve Un, the brand’s general manager!
From our meeting with Steve, we learnt a lot about the brand’s vision going forward and that showed especially within their two new products. The two key factors he spoke about were as follows.
- Make a product for everyone. He wants Questyle products to be something that everyone can use. On top of that devices will have their obvious use but also show much more versatility in common day to day scenarios.
Pricing. He put a lot of emphasis that they want to keep things affordable without dropping into the budget market. Apparently, a lot of feedback has told them they could have charged a lot more for the new DAP (I agree) but they didn’t want to get into that game. They also said they don’t see them selves slipping under $799 for anything, which funnily enough is the RRP for the new CMA400i.
- So the first of the new products was the CMA400i. This is the third all in one DAC/amp Questyle have put to market and also the cheapest. It really embraces the versatility aspect we talked about and shows great value for how much it was offering. It could do all file formats, had a 4 pin XLR and 2.5mm balanced output (along with 6.3mm SE) and even gain switches on the bottom. Our favourite bit was the new silicone stand it bundled with, so if you are lacking space in your desktop environment it can be placed vertically. I want to get two of these for my CMA800Rs. The idea with this is that it can be used as a general audio device, both with your high-end headphones and DSD all the way to in a gaming system!
Then you had the second generation DAP. Physically it doesn’t look like much changed and even after having a play with it only the scroll wheel feels a bit different. While on the outside not much might be different, internally it certainly had. For starters, it has the same new flagship AMK DAC chipset as the A&ultima SP1000 (AK4490) and it also has much more powerful current mode amplification. It has a Class A BIAS system that only activates the Class A operation when needed, with lower sensitivity headphones. There is a BIAS indicator on the right side of QP2R and it shows the standard bias indicated by the orange light, and the high bias by a red light.
Once again there is a big focus on the multiple ways you can use this product. At home, you can pair it with its included dock to connect to active speakers or a full blown desktop system via its analog or SPDIF outputs. You can, of course, use it on the go and then in a car. Steve was even saying due to its easy UI your girlfriend/wife would enjoy using it. The QP2R will retail for $1,299 and we can’t wait to get a serious listen!