Cambridge Audio has revealed two new music streamers. The AXN10 and MXN10 network audio players sit below the UK hi-fi brand's Award-winning CXN V2 music streamer, offering cheaper prices and, in the MXN10's case, more flexible placement.
Both streamers feature a more minimalist design but unusually, they feature the exact same streaming features, file compatibility and functionality.
The AXN10 is a typical 'full size' music streamer designed to match the existing AX range of affordable hi-fi separates. The MX, meanwhile, has a much smaller footprint. Its dimensions (52 x 215 x 191mm) are actually near-identical to that of the five-star DacMagic 200M desktop DAC/headphone amplifier. Neat. Cambridge says its flexible form can be used to add "streaming to any music system and bring vintage hi-fi kit back up to date".
Both models have the brand's in-house StreamMagic module at its centre, which has powered the premium CXN V2, Evo all-in-one systems and high-end Edge NQ streaming preamp (all received five stars from What Hi-Fi?, it should be noted).
As such, the AXN10 and MXN10 have a wide range of streaming options for you to play your music. There's AirPlay 2, Google Chromecast and Bluetooth 5.0. They have wi-fi and wired ethernet on board; UPnP compatibility means you can play any locally stored files on your network through the two streamers. You can also play stored files using the USB Type A input. Music streaming services are supported – Spotify Connect, Tidal, Qobuz – as is internet radio. There's no native MQA support for Tidal Masters streams, but the players are Roon Ready.
File compatibility is extensive: the internal ESS Sabre ES9033Q DAC in both players will handle hi-res audio files up to 32-bit/768kHz PCM and DSD512 files.
”At Cambridge Audio we believe in offering our listeners choice; it’s essential to offer diverse routes to the music you love. We’re delighted to expand the StreamMagic family to even more listeners worldwide,” says Stuart George, Cambridge Audio's CEO.
For outputs, there is one pair of RCA line level, one coaxial and one optical.
There's no screen on the front panel, which is a shame if you enjoy seeing album artwork in full colour. However, both can be controlled using the dedicated StreamMagic app available for iOS and Android.
Pricing? The AXN10 will cost £549 / $599 / €599 at launch. Curiously, the press release says this model will be "limited edition" and Cambridge Audio has further stated to us that the ANX10 will be "initially available in limited quantities".
The smaller MXN10 will set you back £449 / $499 / €499 – only £100 cheaper than the full size model. At these prices, both models will go up against Award-winning rival, the Bluesound Node 2021. Both are available from March.
What about sound quality? How different will the audio performance be between the two products? We're intrigued to find out, and we'll report back once we get samples in our dedicated listening rooms for the full review.
Read our full Cambridge Audio CXN V2 review