We've been tracking the impending launch of new UK hi-fi brand Mitchell and Johnson since the beginning of 2014, when it made its international debut at CES.
The good news is that we've finally got our hands on the first review samples of its £299 SAP-201V stereo amplifier (shown above), with built-in 24-bit/192kHz DAC, and £249 CDD-201 CD player (below). We'll be testing them soon.
Mitchell and Johnson was set up by the team who previously brought the Sansui brand back to the UK in 2011, Paul Mitchell and Dave Johnson. Having previously sold a range of hi-fi products using the Sansui name under licence, they have now redesigned and re-engineered them to be sold under the Mitchell and Johnson banner.
The SAP-201V is an updated and improved version of the original Sansui SAP-201V amp, which we awarded four stars in 2012. Power output is 40W per channel into 8Ohms. Other features include four line-level analogue inputs, a 3.5mm front panel socket, a dedicated phono input for a turntable and coaxial/optical digital inputs for use with the integrated DAC.
The latter enables owners to feed the signal from portable devices or computers through the amp, with the better quality Wolfson DAC within the SAP-201V handling the digital-to-analogue conversion for improved sound quality. High quality toroidal transformers and audiophile-grade components are used throughout "to ensure accurate sound tuning", the company says.
Available in brushed silver or black, the SAP-201V is designed to match the partnering CDD-201 CD player, which can handle CD/CD-R/CD+R/CD-RW and MP3 formats.
Co-founder Paul Mitchell says his aim is to create an affordable alternative to Cambridge Audio's successful budget hi-fi range, which is sold exclusively through Richer Sounds in the UK.