This company has something in common with Linn: it is known first and foremost as a maker of music sources. True, Rega now makes speakers, amplifiers, tuners and (of course) CD players, but in audiophile circles you can't mention them without everyone thinking of the famous Planar turntables.
Of course CD players are source components too, and Rega honored its reputation with the Planet, its one-box CD player (UHF No. 51). Now comes the Jupiter, which looks exactly like the Planet, and its matching converter, the Io.
(Considering Rega's recent naming of components, we presume the names refer to astronomy rather than mythology. Io is of course one of Jupiter's satellites.)
The controls are identical to those of the Planet, and there is just one output on the Jupiter: an RCA jack. The Io has an RCA input, and it has no controls other than a power switch. The jacks look less than terrific, and there is no balanced option. The Io's red pilot light blinks when it is not receiving a digital signal from the transport, but shines steadily when it is.
The two units stack nicely, and that is how we ran them. However we placed them on a Target wall-mount table...a good idea, as we shall see.
Our samples came to us directly from a show, and they lacked instruction manuals and even the remote control. No cables were included either. We used the same Wireworld Gold Starlight digital cable that links our reference player, though using such a cable adds C$500 to the bill. We suspected our units were already well broken-in, but we added a few dozen more hours to their life, just in case.
We had liked the one-box Rega Planet when we had reviewed it, and considered it particularly good value. We had been disconcerted by its subsequent rise in price, which brought it into competition against some of the newer super players that had recently emerged. Very simply, the Planet has appealing musicality with attractive smoothness, but we wished there were an upscale model with more resolution. Well, this player is it. This is not merely a Planet that has been sawn in two.
Model: Rega Jupiter & Io
Price: C$1625 (Jupiter), C$1250 (Io), $2595 (both). US$ equivalents: $1097, $845, $1752
Dimensions: 43 x 26 x 7 cm
Warranty: 1 year (transport), 3 years (DAC), transferable
(Want to know why? Check out the full article in our print edition.)
PARTIAL TEXT: Putting Vinyl on CD, the Montreal Show, Digital Radio, the Moon Eclipse, the Linn Genki, the Rega Jupiter and Io, the Cambridge D500, the Oskar Kithara
FULL TEXT: MaxiVision 48 film. Testing CD Players, the Linn Ikemi, Listening in the Nearfield, State of the Art
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