Sony Sells Out of $1499 Hi Res Audio Deck

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Sony RSX-GS9

Sony has sold out of pre-orders for the first run of its $1499 Hi-Res Audio car media player, according to a representative.

Sony’s initial shipment was reportedly in the high hundreds of units. Demand was “considerably higher” than expected, said the representative; an indication that there may be a healthy niche for high end car audio.

“There’s a considerably larger market for a product like this than most people have assumed…I think it’s going to open dealers’ eyes to the fact that there’s a viable market for high resolution audio in the car,” he added.

Sony’s RSX-GS9 ships in December.  It can play 192kHz/24 bit PCM and 2.8MHz & 5.6 MHz DSD audio with a frequency response of 20Hz-90kHz and an SN radio of 117dB. Typical specs for CD players are 44.kHz/16 bit audio, 20Hz-20kHz with an SN of around 100. The RSX-GS9 can also upscale non-Hi-Res Audio files to improve performance, says Sony.

Sony has called the RSX-GS9 the radio “with the best specifications ever.”

A post by CEoutlook on the 12 Volt Insider, elicited comments praising the release of the Sony media player. “I think there is a market for it…. I think it fits a niche that other manufactures have decided to ignore,” said Luke Fidler of Audio Expert, in Clearwater, FL.

“I am giddy about the Sony Hi-Res stuff,” said Ben Vollmer of Audition Audio & Electronics, Cumming, GA. “ It’s the first audiophile head unit released for the car environment in about the past ten years here in the USA. We have a number of the units on order for both my personal cars and client’s vehicles. I don’t see it being for every client, but it is statement piece that will help drive the clients that want sound quality. The pricing is spot on…”

However, Brian Piwonski of Hamilton Audio, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada said a challenge is “There are 10,000,000,000 kids who are okay with 96kb/s mp3 or even satelite radio in their car to 10 people like us who are willing to invest the time and money into true Hi-Res.”

Audison, one of the first suppliers to offer a 12 volt form of Hi-Res audio processors and storage, said it welcomes the Sony player.

Some more specs on the new Sony RSX-GS9…it will play back audio on a USB drive in FLAC 192kHz/24bit without down converting the signal.   It works with a pair of Sony audiophile super tweeters and a a Hi-Res Audio amplifier (70 watts x 4) sold separately.

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