When you open the box for the Encore you are presented with an 18.3 Kg beast of a unit! This 225 watt box of musical delights is really solidly built and as such fills you with confidence even before you plug it in.
The Musical Fidelity Encore 225's purpose is to provide a one box solution designed to take away the fuss that usually entails when you take your first steps into streaming. There is no need to have a separate storage unit such as a network attached storage (NAS) drive as the Encore has its own 1TB (upgradeable) hard drive built in. You can connect the Encore to your network and you can drag and drop music onto it. Not only that, but it comes equipped with a CD drive which can work as a CD player but is also a ripper. Copying your CD collection could not be simpler, just put it in the drive and the Encore takes care of the rest. Using the Apple or Android App you then simply find your music and press play. The large high resolution display on the front panel will then show the artwork and track you are currently playing. It's not limited to playing music from the hard drive or CD though, as the Encore integrates the music subscription service Tidal through its App allowing CD quality playback from their large jukebox in the cloud. Also around the back of the unit you will find 3 pairs of RCA inputs, 4 digital inputs and a couple of USB inputs for expanding the units storage. Also on the front panel it has a high quality headphone output.
As previously mentioned the Encore has 225 watts per channel plenty enough for the vast majority of speakers out there and enough to always keep things under control. We have tried it on a number of different speaker makes and models including Dynaudio, Neat, Bowers and Wilkins, PMC and it worked well with all of them so it's certainly not a fussy amplifier. We also tried a variety of music genres. Playing Antonin Dvorak Op. 77 Scherzo performed by the Berlin Philharmonic String Quartet showed just how much grip on the speakers the amplifier has as the dynamics of the performance shone from the first bar onwards. Tippers Gulch from his Backwards Forwards album memorised with the scale of the sound stage and again this showed the amplifiers control as the speakers didn't trip up once as the sounds in the track twisted and turned. It not all about power though, as the Encore is really good at resolving the detail. On Agnes Obel's Aventine you could hear every last nuance in her voice and the strings giving the impression the artists were in the room with you. All in all we think the Encore is a great sounding product and perfect for the modern ways of music consumption. The Encore 225 offers a lot of product for the money. Of course you can come and hear it for yourself, Just give us a call for a demonstration on 0117 926 4975.
Thanks for looking.
Martin, Max and James. Audio T Bristol
Musical Fidelity Hi-Fi products are available from the following branches of Audio T:
Brentwood, Bristol, Cardiff, Cheltenham, Enfield, Manchester, Online, Southampton, Swansea, Swindon