The EX is made to the same specification level as our flagship DX, and was only the second Antipodes music server to get the 'X-Series' designation. The EX can be thought of as a DX in a half-width case. It uses the same V4X circuit for signal handling that is used in the class-leading DX and the only significant difference driving relative audio performance is that the EX uses a single internal ODAPS2 power supply and the DX uses internal Dual ODAPS1 Power Supplies. While the new ODAPS2 technology improves on ODAPS1, particularly for the rendering function, the use of dual power supplies in the DX gives it slightly better performance of the server function. Which sounds best will depend on system context.
Other differences from the DX are that the EX uses user-installable storage and does not have an integrated ripper.
The EX is CNC machined from solid plates of alloy and then anodised. The interior creates separate chambers, screening off switches, wiring and power supply from the signal handling electronics. The EX is the first Antipodes music server to use our newly developed ODAPS2 power supply technology, which reduces high frequency noise without resorting to filtering that would impede the speed of current delivery needed in a music server. This translates to providing fast, clean and highly-resolved transients, with an improved sense of space and fine detail, without any of the harshness you may have associated with digital audio in the past.
The EX is a superb renderer, coupled with an excellent mid-power server capability. Its full potential is realised when it is performing just the renderer function and receiving an excellent input signal from a CX. Used on its own the EX is a stunning value entry model to the Antipodes X-Series. Upgrading it with a CX to the CX+EX solution, where the CX performs the server function lifts performance to the absolute state of the art.
Owners of an EX can use any USB CD/DVD ripper to auto-rip their CDs, or add the new P1 platform, with its integrated high precision ripper. The EX is designed so that you can add your own storage disks, and you can self-install up to 4TB of HDD or up to 8TB of SSD storage. Use of SSDs improves dynamics, high frequency sweetness and speed, and is significantly more musically engaging. If you prefer to have your storage disks pre-installed then your dealer can assist you.
We have added one key feature to the EX, a good sounding stereo analog output. Customers moving from a CD Player can start with the EX and play direct to their amplifier, and leave adding a high quality USB DAC till later. This was not an attempt to include a high quality DAC. Instead we sought a very inexpensive way to reveal the benefits of getting the digital part right. It is as they say, buzz-word free, limited to PCM and up to 24 bit 192kHz, and other formats can be transcoded on-the-fly for playback.
The reason for the design choices in the EX are:
The EX includes the Direct Ethernet capability included in all current Antipodes models. This enables the EX to feed an Ethernet DAC with a very low noise signal, insulated from extraneous network noise.