Unlock a deep appreciation for the sound. That is basically the motivation for Harman to launch a reinvigorated effort to expand the market for Mark Levinson high end audio products. Harman is investing the full muscle of its global marketing resources with a multimillion dollar, multi-platform campaign planned to expand the brand's outreach. And with more products planned to be introduced soon within this wide reaching strategy, Harman expands to appeal to more consumers worldwide with the same level of commitment it applies to more affordable products, as fully reflected on the new Mark Levinson website.
With this announcement streamed online from Connecticut and NY to the global press and distribution channel, Mark Levinson adds the new 5302 Bridgeable Dual-Monaural Amplifier, and the Nº5206 Dual-Monaural Preamplifier to the 5000 flagship line, featuring also the Mark Levinson 5105 precision-engineered turntable, and the much-anticipated Network Streaming CD and SACD Player with PrecisionLink II DAC and Pure Path analog output stage. All products that Harman believes will convince an increasing number of consumers to recognize the value of an investment in very high quality experiences, and the intimate detail achievable in listening to music with Mark Levinson.
Interestingly, all the four new products unveiled during this event are shipping and available or close to be reaching the brand's retail partners. "The passion behind the Mark Levinson brand has always been a pure love of music," explains Jim Garrett, Senior Director, Product Strategy and Planning, Harman Luxury Audio. "The exceptional audio quality delivered by our systems allows listeners to discover subtle nuances and intimate details they’ve never heard before on songs that they truly love."
The Mark Levinson Nº5302 Amplifier
The brand-new Mark Levinson nº5302 bridgeable dual-monaural amplifier sports the stark cleanness of the signature Mark Levinson look, while aiming to deliver sound that has reflect the Mark Levinson heritage: a deep, expansive soundstage, accurate image placement, extended low bass response and excellent pitch definition. The audio circuitry of the 5302 yields impressive performance outputting 135W/channel in stereo mode and 275W in bridged monaural mode. Gain in stereo mode is 25.8dB and 31.8dB in bridged monaural mode.
The fully discrete, direct-coupled, class AB amplifier channels get their power from an oversized 1100 VA toroidal transformer with individual secondary windings for the left and right channels. The voltage gain stage employs a topology directly descended from the acclaimed 534 amplifier, which is mated to an output stage comprising two high-speed driver transistors operating in class A and six 260V, 15A output transistors. Two Thermal-Trak devices in a unique configuration guarantee stable output bias regardless of load or temperature. Four 10,000-microfarad capacitors per channel, located directly on the output stage circuit board, easily provide enough current for a conservative 135W/channel at 8 ohms, 270W/channel at 4 ohms, and 550W bridged in mono, with stable operation at 2 ohms.
Input connectors on the 5302 feature a pair of balanced line-level XLRs and a pair of single-ended RCAs. Output connectors are two pairs of high-current multi-way binding posts. System integration, control, and communication ports include Ethernet, USB, RS-232, IR input, and 12V trigger input and output. The 5302 amplifier is priced at $9,000.
The Mark Levinson Nº5206 Preamplifier
Drawing upon rich pedigree and a strong design philosophy and applying new innovations, the Mark Levinson 5206 dual-monaural preamplifier aims to provide discerning music lovers with exceptional sound, outstanding digital audio capabilities and iconic design that enhances any room environment. Derived from Mark Levinson’s highly-acclaimed Pure Path design philosophy, the 5206 preamplifier delivers all the performance and quality expected from Mark Levinson at exceptional value at $9,000.
The foundation of the Mark Levinson 5206 is its fully discrete, direct-coupled, dual-monaural line-level preamp circuitry, for which the HARMAN design team has been awarded two patents. A unique single gain stage mated to a digitally controlled resistor network for volume adjustment maintains maximum signal integrity and widest possible bandwidth. Each of its four-stereo line-level inputs — two balanced XLR and two single-ended, using custom Mark Levinson RCA connectors — has its own individual high-reliability signal switching relays. Like the 500 Series components, the MainDrive headphone output employs a preamp output stage specifically designed with the current and power capacity to drive headphones directly, without a separate headphone amp.
A brand-new phono stage features a hybrid gain topology, mating key discrete components from the acclaimed 500 Series Pure Phono stage with premium low-noise integrated circuits for high performance at a lower cost. Also, like the iconic Mark Levinson 500 series from which the new 5206 draws inspiration, a hybrid active/passive RIAA equalizer employs precision resistors and polypropylene capacitors for exceptional accuracy and sonic clarity. Users can select MM/MC gain and optional infrasonic filter from the setup menu, while capacitive and resistive loading settings are easily accessed from the rear panel. Variable line-level RCA outputs allow system expansion and flexibility.
The 5206 features Mark Levinson Precision Link II DAC, where a class-leading ESS Sabre Pro series 32-bit D/A converter with jitter elimination circuitry is implemented with five independent low-noise power supplies and a fully balanced, discrete current-to-voltage converter. Six digital audio inputs are provided: One AES, two coaxial and two optical S/PDIF, and one asynchronous USB for playback of high-resolution PCM (up to 32 bit/384kHz) and DSD (up to 11.2MHz) files. In addition, a high quality Bluetooth input offers aptX HD decoding. The 5206 includes MQA (Master Quality Authenticated) technology, which enables full decoding of MQA audio files and streams.
The design of the new 5206 also incorporates the iconic hourglass knobs redefined with a gently curved profile softly transitioning into a rounded front. Other meticulous details include debossed top cover vents, custom machined aluminum Standby and Menu buttons, and matching feet, allowing for the 5206 to exude elegance and style, using premium materials, and lavish finishes. The one-inch-thick, bead-blasted, black-anodized, solid aluminum front panels are machined and contoured to flow seamlessly into the sleek glass display, which itself is recessed into a bead-blasted, clear-anodized aluminum bezel.
"Mark Levinson is so much more than high-fidelity. Listeners can appreciate the entirety of a recording in ways never before possible," Garrett adds. "You can hear music here like you have never heard before. Our new branding program elevates the fact that Mark Levinson adds a new dynamic to any listening experience and also the fact that appreciation of great music can be a social exercise as opposed to just a personal journey!"
The Mark Levinson Nº5105 Turntable
Now shipping, the precision-engineered Mark Levinson 5105 premium turntable is built upon a nearly two-inch thick, solid aluminum plinth machined from a single billet. A one-inch thick, bead-blasted, black-anodized solid aluminum front panel contours into the sleek tinted glass display.
The iconic Mark Levinson hourglass knob design features as a record weight — bead-blasted machined aluminum with a gently curved profile mass-loaded with solid brass. The tonearm tube is 10-inch high-gloss back carbon fiber fused to a solid aluminum headshell with an integrated finger lift. A 14lb solid aluminum platter is suspended on a ground, hardened steel axle and rotates on ultra-precise bearings. The oil-free bearing bottom, made of a mix of composite materials with integrated lubrication and maintenance-free sintered brass bushing, ensures reliable operation for years to come.
The 12V synchronous motor's control signal is digitally generated to eliminate temperature drift and ensure speed stability and low wow/flutter. The integrated, wide-range power supply is designed for global use with 90-260 VAC. The new 5105 Turntable is priced at $6,500 without phono cartridge and $7,500 with a cartridge. While all the Mark Levinson 5000 series are designed and manufactured in the USA, the 5105 and 5105MC turntables are assembled and precision-crafted in Germany.
The Mark Levinson Nº5101 Streaming Player
The most anticipated of the new 5000 series, coupling CD formats with high-resolution streaming, a standalone Precision Link II DAC and expansive control features, the new Mark Levinson 5101 is designed to deliver digital content with the best possible quality and convenience for nearly every digital audio format.
Featuring outstanding digital audio capabilities via the Mark Levinson Precision Link II DAC, the new Nº5101 also boasts latest generation ESS PRO Sabre 32-bit D/A conversion with jitter elimination circuitry. Applying proprietary Mark Levinson PurePath circuitry, the 5101 features a fully discrete, direct-coupled, dual-monaural current to voltage converter for exceptional reproduction of the analog signal.
The 5101 offers a variety of digital inputs, including one coaxial and one optical S/PDIF, one USB-A for playback from a flash drive, a CD/SACD transport, and network streaming via Wi-Fi or Ethernet. The 5101 natively supports high-resolution formats, including FLAC, WAV, AIFF, OGG, up to 24-bit/192kHz, AAC up to 24-bit/96kHz, DSF, and DFF up to 5.6 MHz (DSD128/DSD2X) as well as WMA and MP3 formats. The SACD drive plays SACD, CD-A, CD-R, and CD-RW discs. Outputs include stereo balanced XLR and single-ended RCA connectors.
Modern high-resolution network streaming capabilities over Ethernet and Wi-Fi are accessed via an intuitive mobile app for Android and iOS devices. Users can enjoy major streaming platforms, including Tidal, Deezer, Qobuz, podcasts and radio stations across the globe and additionally the 5101 can playback files from Network Attached Storage (NAS) devices, as well as a connected USB flash drive.
Sporting the bold geometry of the signature Mark Levinson design and crafted from robust materials, the new 5101 features a one-inch thick, bead-blasted, black-anodized, solid aluminum front panel, a sleek glass display, debossed top cover vents, back-printed logo and machined aluminum buttons. The 5101 is priced at $5,500 and available now.