Dan D'Agostino Master Audio Systems
Many audiophiles are familiar with the name Dan D'Agostino, by virtue of him being the founder, CEO, and chief engineer at Krell which he founded in 1980. The products made by Krell, which included everything from power amplifiers to SACD players and speakers, were some of the best high-end components available. In 2009 he was ousted by investors that he himself invited into the company because they thought the company should change direction. Almost immediately after leaving Krell he formed Dan D'Agostino Master Audio Systems.
The MLife (short for Momentum Lifestyle) is a 200 Watt per channel @ 8 Ohms (800W @ 2 Ohms) integrated amplifier that, per D'Agostino, uses the identical amplifier and preamplifier circuits those in the Momentum series. The difference is that the MLife includes a 24-bit/192kHz digital-to-analog converter (DAC) that is combined with top-notch clocking to minimize digital distorting jitter, which they specifically included so its internal DAC can convert DSD digital signals with the highest resolution and sound quality. Added to this is the "networked" portion of this "ultimate" integrated amplifier, in that the MLife can play files wirelessly via an Ethernet connection on its rear panel or with Airplay from an iOS device. On the front panel of the MLife is a rather large LCD display, which is indispensable when playing files that are sourced wirelessly either through this Ethernet connection, or wirelessly through one's iPhone or iPad via AirPlay. After downloading D'Agostino's iOS app to a device, it acts as the MLife's remote, controlling all the functions of the MLife, while the metadata appears on the LCD screen on the front panel.
I would have been very surprised if the Dan D'Agostino MLife's sound quality wasn't first-rate. But wow, first-rate is one thing, but here I was, listening to an integrated amplifier that brought into my listening room a level of sound quality that I previously have heard only from components that were very close to state-of-the-art. But never from an integrated amplifier. It's safe to say that unless one is accustomed to very, very high quality high-end electronics in one's own listening room there will be no other audio components to compare to the sound of the Momentum Lifestyle. So, here was the MLife playing familiar tunes through my Sound Lab Dynastat electrostatic speakers, augmented by a Velodyne 15" subwoofer, and all I could do was bask in its sound.
The moniker of this component, the Dan D'Agostino Master Systems Momentum Lifestyle integrated amplifier is certainly a mouthful, isn't it? I have no problem with it, except perhaps the "Lifestyle" portion of it, which might infer to some that this product was made to appeal to non-audiophiles who simply want the best integrated amplifier/wireless DAC they can buy, and not have to mess with it other than connecting a pair of speakers, and perhaps a younger family member's turntable set-up. Yes, Dan D'Agostino is correct in thinking that this is a great way to market a fantastic sounding and great looking piece of equipment not only to audiophiles, but anyone who wants the best sound, or simply, the best. But as an audiophile I found the Dan D'Agostino's Momentum Lifestyle integrated amp to be not only a great "lifestyle" product, but a great audiophile product.
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