The Soundastic Reference comes across to us as remarkably neutral and fast. This is audible both through the Final Audio Model 12 and through our Focal Sopra No1. We expected – given its appearance – a much rounder, warmer sound. But no… speed and air meet us. And that’s what your author likes. Coloring can make everything sound the same. And that, of course, is what nobody wants.
We have tested the Soundastic Reference mainly via XLR and single ended line inputs. We could not try the phono stage, since we did not have a record player that performs at this level. Too bad, because we were curious about the implementation of the MM/MC input. By the way, Soundastic chose the fairly standard 47 ohms and 3mV for MM and 100 ohms and 0.2 mV for MC.
But what we were able to do was play through the Denon DCD A110 CD player and the Alpha Audio PC with Mutec MC3+ and the Metrum Acoustics Pavane dac. And those combinations work excellently we notice. We really have no preference here. The Denon DCD A110 is a beast of a cd-player that we have completely fallen in love with. And that love grows deeper and deeper as we listen to it. The audio PC with Jcat cards is downright a resolution monster. Especially with the Mutec MC3+ behind it as a ‘bridge’ to the Pavane DAC. Every detail this set-up pulls out of the streams. And the Soundastic Reference knows how to reproduce that character just fine. Both wiith the Finals and the Focals.
Now these speakers have a completely different character; one is a dynamic model and the other an electrostatic. However, we also hear that character back in an excellent way. We never feel short of power. And that gives the necessary calmness, air and dynamics in the reproduction.