So is this an amplifier, a streamer, a speaker… or what?Well, the Muso actually all of those things! Amp-wise, there are six 75 watt digital amplifiers inside, each driving a built-in speaker: there are two dome tweeters, two bass drivers and two mid-range drivers. So there’s no need to hook up separate speakers at all.
Streamer-wise, it can wirelessly suck up music using AirPlay (which works with iOS devices and iTunes-running computers), Bluetooth or UPnP, plus it has a built-in internet radio capabilities, digital and analogue inputs, and can also play music directly off an attached USB device. Several units can wirelessly sync for multi-room playback.
It looks classy…Indeed it does. It uses extruded aluminium, anodised aluminium and wood in its construction, and there’s a touch panel volume control made of a solid aluminium. It weighs a hefty 13kg too, so this isn’t going to vibrate when you crank up the volume.
It’s been designed to fit in with Naim’s Statement series of amplifiers, which allows Naim’s designers to use terms like “monolithic” and phrases like “organic, sculptural features that represent the abstract experience of music”. Mostly, we just think it looks lovely.
Does it support Hi-Res Audio?But of course! WAV, FLAC and AIFF files up to 24-bit/192kHz are compatible, as are 24-bit/96kHz Apple Lossless tunes. But you’ll have to use a wired connection for those, because tracks streamed wirelessly are limited to 48kHz.
And how do I control it?Aside from the aforementioned volume control (which, yes, goes up to 11), there’s an app for Android and iOS that allows your phone or tablet to work as a touchscreen remote, as well as a basic remote for tweaking volume, skipping tracks and turning the Muso on or off.
Sold! Where can I get one?You’ll have to wait until September, unfortunately, because that’s when the Muso goes on sale. It’ll cost you £895 (S$1,861).