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CO-WRITTEN / PARTNER | Staff Reporter, Hong Kong

Sound Concepts keeping its ear to the ground for new trends

In this day and age of disposable speakers and generic components, sound quality has taken a backseat to trendiness and novelty. However, serious listeners know that life is too short to listen to bad audio and that sound should always come first, with no exceptions. Even the best recordings will sound mediocre if played through a low quality rig, so you need a system that’s up for the task. For audiophiles with uncompromising sonic standards, Sound Concepts Hong Kong is the source for all of your audio solutions.

Founded by industry veteran Ms. Sherry Chung in 1990, the company has built a proven track record over the last 25 years, and is one of the fastest-growing integrated AV solutions distributors in Hong Kong. The company services the bespoke high-fidelity needs of a wide variety of both residential and institutional clients, with names such as the Shanghai Symphony Hall and the Shanghai Glass Museum. Sound Concepts Ltd. carries some of the finest brands in the industry, such as ATC, Axium and Parasound, along with providing installation and after sales services to customers in Hong Kong and China.

Constantly keeping its ear to the ground for new industry trends, Sound Concepts continuously pounds the pavement in search of the latest innovations whether analogue or digital. Given the growing trend in online music purchases and streaming, Sound Concepts has begun to offer digitally-compatible HiFi systems, allowing high-quality playback from your laptop, desktop, tablet, or smartphone.

Innovative products
New products include the Musaic MP5 &MP10 Wireless music players, which seamlessly integrates into any digital ecosystem that may be installed in your home and can play almost any file type including 24-bit Studio Master Files. With the ability to connect to your home WiFi network, the system can also directly play music from 15,000 different internet radio stations and leading streaming services such as Spotify and iTunes Music.

In addition to being a music player, the device can serve as a control hub for other home systems such as smart lighting platforms and internet of things (IOT) applications. The Playback Designs MPS-5 Signature Limited Edition is also another new product that combines digital features with uncompromising audio standards. This CD/SACD transport also boasts Digital-to-Analogue Converter capabilities (DAC) capabilities, allowing for playback from a number of digital sources. The unit allows for super-high resolution files from PC, MAC or USB input, with up to 24/384kHz PCM and 6.1MHz DSD.

Sound Concepts has also begun to offer the Bricasti M1 Digital to Analogue Converter Preamp to complement their other digitally compatible offerings. The unit supports the highest quality playback, capable of sample rates of up to 352.8kHz& 24bits, along with DSD, DSD64 and DSD128. With a dual mono design, the preamp features Bricasti’s proprietary filter technology allowing for unparalleled flexibility in tailoring the sound to the rest of your audio system or room.

Future plans
Over the next three years, Sound Concepts is looking to leverage on its deep understanding of the hi-fi audio market to aggressively growth its business by expanding its professional client base, and carrying the latest, most innovative products for its customers. The company has already begun to service institutional clients such as concert halls and nightclubs, partnering with professional-grade component manufacturers such as the British provider Acoustric Transducer Company (ATC).

As the consumer expectations for sound quality continue to move up, establishments will also have to follow suit, which is likely to continue driving demand in this segment.

In retail, digital has been the major trend, with E-commerce being one of the main drivers of increasing retail sales. According to founder Sherry Chung, she sees new trends such as online music purchasing as the way forward as the channel continues to gain traction as consumers’ preferred method of buying. Early on, Sound Concepts recognized this trend and partnered with brands whose products complement this new channel such as Musaic, NetStreams and ReQuest, in order to allow the company’s customers to enjoy their music in audiophile quality from whatever device they may have it on.

Additionally, customers can look forward to a new online sales website from Sound Concepts, with the company looking to go omni-channel. In addition to products that integrate well into the internet of things, new offerings have also become greener, keeping the environmental footprint in mind more than ever. New multi-room systems consume less power given their IP-based built-in digital power amps and low voltage power sources, which are much more efficient than old analogue systems.

Sound Concepts continues to focus on increased compatibility with new trends and upgradability, ensuring longer usable lives for products they offer given that obsolescence happens faster than ever given the rate at which technology evolves today.

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