After teasing it at Munich High-End, Hifi Rose has formally announced a new flagship network transport in the form of the RS130. This is no streaming DAC. The RS130’s multitude of digital outputs must be connected to an outboard converter: TOSLINK, coaxial, AES/EBU, HDMI-socketed I2S and optically-isolated USB. The Ethernet input has also been optically isolated. All streams enjoy NVME SSD memory caching and are clocked out by an OXCO, which according to HiFi Rose is the most stable and accurate clock currently available.
Taking further aim at electrical noise is the RS130’s linear power supply – whose super-capacitors reportedly reduce noise “to battery levels” – and the processed aluminium case which reduces the negative influence of microphony on the signal path.
But the Korean manufacturer hasn’t blitzed its way into the audiophile conversation with performance alone. Like many of its streaming cousins, the RS130’s 15″ full-colour touchscreen runs ultrawide across the full width of the front panel. I’m still not sold on watching YouTube videos on a 1920 x 382px screen. This is made possible by a heavily customised Android 7.1 OS and associated RoseTube app. However, a 4K HDMI output allows us to farm out the unit’s on-screen action to an external display.
I suspect that the RS130’s dedicated Apple Music app that streams hi-res content bit-perfectly will be a major drawcard. Apps for Tidal and Qobuz plus support for AirPlay, Roon Ready, Spotify Connect and Bluetooth are also part of the feature set.
And if it’s too much hassle to reach for a streaming app, the ROSE Connect control app or the supplied remote wand, the four crystal control buttons sitting on the top panel’s lip make for a more tactile experience and provide easier access to basic playback functionality.
Shipping on the RS130 begins in mid-July. Your choice of black or silver. €4799.
Further information: Hifi Rose