Alpine demonstrated to some of the top dealers in the country Wednesday its new audiophile system, the F#1 Status, also providing the first official US demo of 384kHz /32 bit Hi-Res Audio in the car. (Up until now, 192KHz/24bit was the typical top Hi-Res grade).
Three of the $35,000 F#1 Status systems have sold to customers since they launched in December, Alpine said. The company is embarking on a national tour, stopping at some of the twenty-six F#1 Status dealer with a Tesla Model S bearing the system. In addition, Alpine announced that the first time a dealer sells an F#1Status, one of its brand specialists (Chris Teguh, Colin Vargo, or Dan Greenwood) will be deployed to personally tune the system.
Alpine calls the 384kHz Hi-Res system, which includes a special Digital Audio Player (DAP) produced with Astell & Kern, “the pinnacle of car audio.” “We wanted to produce the benchmark for the best quality Hi-Res Audio,” said Mike Anderson, Alpine VP and General Manager.
The system can move data at very high speeds through a 1GHZ/64bit processor. A specially developed “master clock” keeps components in sync to prevent “jitter.” The components use an A2B bus to communicate, which is faster than TOSLINK. And the system uses XLR connections with two 8 volt signals, another first for car audio, said Alpine.
The F#1Status speakers can produce audio from 4Hz to 100kHz @-3dB with 0.003% THD at 10 watts. They include an 11” subwoofer, a pair of 6.5” midbass speakers, 2.5” mid-range speakers, and 1” tweeters. A second subwoofer is available as an option. Other components include a 4-channel virtually noiseless amplifier, an old-style head unit (with green/blue chiclet-style buttons), and a digital signal processor in addition to the Astel & Kern DAP.
Users can play Hi-Res Audio files off a flash drive and stream audio to the DAP. The system will also work with OEM head units or aftermarket decks.
In the Tesla build, the 17-inch factory radio was retained with the F#1Status deck installed underneath. In the trunk, the factory panels were removed to use the full cabin and a combination of wood and fiberglass custom panels were added to the sides of the trunk for the dual subwoofers in 1.5cu ft sealed enclosures. Multiple levels were added to the bottom of the trunk for the Digital Signal Processor and dual, 4-channel amplifiers.
We’re daring to interject a bit of personal opinion here, but it sounded absolutely incredible!