X45 Gains HiFi Critic's Recommended Status
Earlier this year Andrew Everard of Hi-Fi Critic penned an in-depth article reviewing Novafidelity's X45 Streamer and Reference DAC. The outcome? X45 now bears a new and distinguished ‘Hi-Fi Critic - Recommended’ badge to its name.
The X45 combines just about everything you could need from a digital music source.
In his review, Everard covers the awesome enormity of functionality featured in the X45, referenced even in his title “What is it? Everything!” The article journey’s through the X45’s wide ranging user-selectable hard disk and formatting options, ripping and storage procedures, and the various streaming functionalities including support for Tidal and Roon.
However, despite the wealth of different features possessed by the X45, Everard by no means downplays the product’s audio capabilities including its specially chosen ESS ES9018K2M Sabre DAC chip and 16-core microcontroller component for USB DAC functionality.
It would be easy to assume that with so much going on, this unit won’t be any great shakes when it comes to audio quality, but some time spent with the X45 reveals otherwise; having tried it via both its analogue and digital outputs, into integrated and power amps, as a USB host with a couple of suitable DACs, into an AV receiver via HDMI and even as network client, server and Roon endpoint, I came away impressed with what it can do considering its competitive price.
All in all, the exquisite meeting of form, function and musicality at the X45’s keen price point proved the product worthy of HiFi Critic’s very honourable ‘Recommened’ seal, which is now displayed on our product page.
To say that this digital audio jack of all trades puts up an extremely respectable performance is far from damning it with faint praise: indeed, the degree of musical enjoyment it offers is way beyond expectation, whether streaming low-bitrate radio broadcasts or playing the highest sampling rate DSD files on which one can lay hands.
Hi-Fi Critic Magazine is the UK’s only advert free independent audio review magazine, featuring reviews from Andrew Everard and also Martin Colloms. To read the full Hi-Fi Critic X45 review in its entirety click here. Or for more details on the X45 itself check out our product page.