The Absolute Sound: New Age Audio: Questyle QP1 and QP1R Portable Players

Artical from The Absolute Sound

 by Alan Taffel 

Both of these stylish units take square aim at Astell&Kern. And both use the very same Cirrus Logic DAC chip found in the former flagship, now penultimate, AK420. The difference, as Questyle is quick to point out, is that while the A&K costs $2400, Questyles start at $599 for a 16GB QP1.  The Questyle folks reckon they have a bunch of other advantages over those other guys, starting with pure Class A, all-discrete current amps (no op-amps are used), followed by metalwork done in the same factory as Apple’s iPhones. The QP1R (for Reference) is $899 with 32GB and updated parts.

As played through B&W cans, both units sounded clean, quick, and well balanced.  There was no extraneous noise, no digital edginess, so no fatigue – just a nice, relaxed presentation.  It would be great to pit the QP1 against the similarly priced AK Jr. and see where the chips all.  But will both manufacturers be game? Consider this a gauntlet thrown!