Designed specifically for custom-integrated multi-room audio applications, the XDA-QS5400RK quad-streaming amplifier, "QS" for short, offers a combination of installation flexibility, expandability and exceptional audio performance, plus compatibility with the extensive range of MusicCast audio products. It provides four zones of streaming audio with eight channels of amplification for powering in-ceiling speakers throughout the house, as well as outdoor speakers by the patio, pool or garden. The streams may be assigned to any or all pairs of the amp channels.
As part of the Yamaha MusicCast family, the QS integrates seamlessly over a network with a wide array of Wi-Fi-connected MusicCast products. Users can enjoy their favorite tunes around the house through a mix of architectural speakers and wireless MusicCast-enabled products, including AV receivers, sound bars and Hi-Fi gear.
The QS features an ultra-slim, space-efficient 1U rack-mountable enclosure whose compact size is valued by installers confronted with limited rack space. The enclosure comes with removable rack ears and a faceplate to provide a perfectly finished look in an AV equipment rack or cabinet. Dual Ethernet LAN ports make it easy to daisy chain multiple units in a rack, allowing for expansion up to 32 zones.
"Our AVENTAGE AV receiver line has long been a choice of custom integrators for building state-of-the-art surround sound systems. Now we're making it easier than ever for integrators to expand beyond the home theater, to bring Yamaha true sound and reliability to every room in a home," says Robert Goedken, general manager, AV division, Yamaha Corporation of America. "The Yamaha MusicCast ecosystem keeps getting better and custom integrators are going to love the QS."
With MusicCast, music enthusiasts can enjoy popular streaming services, thousands of Internet radio stations, and music libraries stored on mobile devices and computers. Supported streaming services include Spotify, Pandora, SiriusXM Internet Radio, SiriusXM Music for Business, TIDAL, Deezer and Napster. MusicCast supports high-resolution audio streaming up to 192kHz/24-bit, delivering more accurate reproduction of sonic details, presence and atmosphere.
The streaming amp provides three ways of supporting externally-connected sources. Devices such as TVs and turntables connected to MusicCast receivers and soundbars may be linked to QS zones for simultaneous playback. Analog sources may be connected directly to the Aux input on the QS for access in any zone. Lastly, a unique Cut-In input automatically senses an input signal and temporarily overrides the selected source. This allows for the integration of media players, CD changers or even paging systems into a multi-zone audio system.
The QS and other MusicCast products can be controlled through the free Yamaha MusicCast app, or through third third-party home control systems such as Control4, ELAN and RTI, which integrate the operation of multi-room audio, home theater, lighting, security, HVAC and other home systems through powerful in-wall and tabletop controllers and mobile-device apps. MusicCast products can be controlled through voice commands by Amazon Alexa-enabled devices such as Echo or Echo Dot.
Basic setup of the streaming amplifier can be accomplished with the MusicCast app while a web-based setup capability enables integrators to tweak advanced settings to deliver the ultimate combination of customization and performance. Web setup profiles can be stored and recalled for future projects.
As befits the Yamaha heritage of true sound, the QS delivers the highest levels of audio performance using the most advanced audio technologies. It employs dual, audiophile-grade 384kHz/32-bit ESS Sabre digital-to-analog converters (DACs), which appear in flagship Yamaha AVENTAGE AV receivers, and ultra-efficient ICEpower integrated amp modules to deliver eight channels of pristine, musically-dynamic digital amplification at 50 watts/channel (8 ohms) with a 10 Hz to 22 kHz (+0/-3 dB) frequency response and 106 dB signal-to-noise ratio. It is capable of 4 ohms at 100 watts/channel and bridgeable to 200 watts/channel (8 ohms).
The QS comes fully loaded with integration-friendly capabilities. These include a differential circuit design that protects against ground-loop hum, a problem often encountered when multiple electronic components are connected in a rack, and Euroblock-type speaker connectors that make it easy to prewire a system and quickly connect and disconnect speaker cables from the chassis. It also offers a unique "Chime" feature that allows a chime sound to be generated in any of the four zones based on a simple contact closure, such as from a gate switch or door bell.
Up to eight streaming amps can be connected to drive up to 32 stereo zones with simultaneous playback of the same source in groups of up to 20 zones each. Additional expansion options are available with the installation of the XDA-AMP5400RK Multi-Room Amplifier companion product, or "AMP" for short, introduced simultaneously. The AMP features eight bridgeable channels that can be deployed to boost speaker output or expand an installation to cover more rooms. The AMP interlocks with the QS via 12V trigger controls and provides analog through outputs for setting up a bus to multiple units for even further expansion.
The XDA-QS5400RK MusicCast Multi-Room Streaming Amplifier, and the XDA-AMP5400RK Multi-Room Amplifier are expected to be available in November 2018 at $2,699.95 MSRP and $1,699.95 MSRP, respectively.