Classics For The Modern Age
Quad gave its team of designers and engineers a specific brief for Artera: combine the qualities that have made Quad one of Britain’s most revered hi-fi marques for many decades with fresh industrial design and the very latest high performance audio technologies.
Artera’s crisp, clean aesthetic both evokes Quad’s past and looks forward to the future, with a textured aluminium front panel, thick glass top and CNC-routed heat sinks on either side. The housing provides a rugged structure that resists interference from external vibrations, while the facia of each player incorporates an intuitive touch-sensitive control, contributing greatly to its sleek design.
The Artera’s complete range includes 4 models: Artera Stereo (power amplifier), Artera Play (CD Player / DAC / Preamp), Artera Link (Streamer / CD Player / DAC / Preamp) and Artera One (Streamer / CD Player / DAC / Preamp / Integrated Amplifier).
Despite their attractive simplicity, the four Artera components deliver exceptional sophistication beneath the skin. At the heart of the Artera Play, Link and One nestles the ESS Sabre32 9018; a 32-bit, eight-channel hybrid multibit Delta-Sigma DAC considered by many to be the finest D/A converter chip available for stereo sound. This is Quad’s first series to utilise the ESS Sabre DAC, and external digital sources can benefit from its exceptional quality via a range of digital inputs. These include USB, with support for PCM data up to 32-bit/384kHz and also DSD64/128/256, ensuring the Artera Play, Link and One are fully equipped to make the most of today’s hi-res music formats, as well as future advances in ultra-high-definition digital sound.
Wi-Fi and Streaming
While harnessing the CD player and hi-res DAC tech within the Artera Play – Artera One and Artera Link add Wi-Fi streaming technology for those seeking the flexibility of networked and wireless audio.
Artera Link and Artera One both feature vTuner integration so you can enjoy over ten thousand radio stations, podcasts and shows – all for free. Synchronised with the Quad App, finding the show that’s just right for your audio tastes has never been easier – filtering by genre, local stations and more.
Without doubt, online streaming has been the biggest modern change to how we consume music. Engineered for Spotify Connect, users can experience Artera’s life-like performance combined with access to millions of hits via Spotify’s extensive library – All of which are streamed by the UPnP protocol ensuring a robust, lossless connection.
Music lovers with their own offline collection can add a NAS drive or PC to the Artera One / Link network and similarly access their whole collection hassle free via the Quad Link App.
Added convenience comes from Bluetooth and AirPlay connections, for quick playback from other wireless devices when not connected to the Artera network.
The Artera Link App
As of all Quad products, engineers were tasked to ensure that the passion and detail of the original recording was delivered in their performance. For the Quad Artera Streamers, additional focus developing a bespoke app was essential for user control over its wide range of features and ensures browsing large libraries of music is second nature.
The Quad Link App, compatible with Artera One and Artera Link is available for download on the App store and Google Play store. The Quad Link App has been designed for intuitive control over all aspects of the player accordingly. With a wide range of selection options, users can both create extensive playlists or ‘favourite’ tracks as they go – a natural and enjoyable way to organise your whole collection.
Users can toggle between the various streaming options, while control also extends to CD playlists, analogue and digital inputs ensuring the modern music fan has access to all their music from analogue devices to a Spotify streaming, all from within the app.
While finding your way round every feature of Artera is effortless, the ‘now playing’ screen is back dropped by the relevant album artwork while displaying file resolution, with instant access to volume, shuffle and skip track functions.
Filters To Suit Every Ear
For CD replay, a new slot-loading mechanism buffers data from the disc before feeding it asynchronously (in order to minimise time domain errors known as ‘jitter’) to the DAC section. Four digital filter options enable users to tailor the Artera Play’s, Link’s and One’s sound, with both CDs and external digital sources, to suit personal taste and the nature of the source material.
Each player within the series features a preamp section which boasts a balanced Class A output stage. Two coaxial and two optical inputs cater for external digital sources alongside the USB input, with a pair of RCA phono inputs handling analogue sources. Analogue outputs are supplied in both single-ended RCA and balanced XLR varieties; a pair of digital outputs (optical and coaxial) and a 12V trigger output complete a comprehensive array of connectivity options.
Iconic Amplifier Technology
The inclusion of full analogue/digital preamp functionality means that the Artera Play and Link can be connected directly to a power amplifier, and its perfect partner in this regard is the Artera Stereo. This compact yet potent power amp sports the latest iteration of Quad’s famous Current Dumping topology, first introduced in the legendary Quad 405 – one of the most lauded British audio components of all time and still the only amp design to have earned a Queen’s Award for Technological Achievement.
Current Dumping is essentially a method of marrying the superior sonic purity of Class A amplification with the greater efficiency of Class AB. An extremely high-quality, low-power Class A amplifier provides the signal quality, while a highpower current dumping section delivers the muscle to keep the speakers under control. These two amp circuits are combined via a precision network to perfectly impose the finesse of the Class A output onto the power of the current dumper. The result is a relatively compact and cool-running power amp capable of delivering a captivating combination of dynamic power, vice-like grip and sumptuous sonic detail.
For those seeking the huge connectivity options of Artera’s players in an all-in-one solution, the Artera One is the go-to player. It features a built-in Class-A/B amplifier, capable of powering high-class speakers and reaching astonishing sound qualities.
Both the Artera One and Artera Link feature additional 6.3mm headphone outputs on the front panel for discrete listening.
Drive The Most Demanding Loudspeakers
The Artera Stereo’s power output is conservatively rated at 140W per channel into eight ohms and 250W into four ohms, ensuring any speakers – including Quad’s classic ESL electrostatic designs – can be driven with ease. Connectivity options comprise single-ended RCA and balanced XLR inputs, a 12V trigger input and high-quality speaker binding posts. Simple, solid and classy on the outside and devilishly clever within, the Artera Stereo maintains Quad’s traditional place at the forefront of modern amplifier design.
“The traditional spirit of Quad has always been to cater for the latest developments in music storage and playback, whilst continually striving to meet the standards inherent in the company’s motto, ‘the closest approach to the original sound’. Thus, the Artera series of components includes full digital and analogue playback capabilities with the resolution and accuracy to replay all current and future high-resolution audio sources with the most musical presentation.
However, today’s consumers are often bewildered and confused by the multiplicity of inputs and controls on modern hi-fi equipment. At Quad, we have never believed that you have to be a ‘hi-fi geek’ to be able to play music at the highest performance level. Artera therefore simplifies the user interface, leaving an uncluttered appearance that is welcoming to all users as well as looking beautiful in the home.”
– Peter Comeau, Acoustic Director
Combining the assurance of tradition with the buzz of innovation, Quad Artera is the lifeblood of high-performance audio entertainment for modern music lovers. The Artera Play, Stereo, Link and One are available now with a choice of black or silver front panels.