In HiFi, there are companies that have been around for decades, companies our fathers held in high esteem when they were young and just getting into HiFi. When these companies come out with a new product, consumers can be confident in their purchase, knowing that the full breadth of that companies knowledge and innovation went into its creation. To think of all the work to reach that point can at times feel daunting. The shows and demonstrations, the tens of thousands of products shipped, the uncounted hours of support and service provided. From that perspective, when we look at all that Wolf has accomplished since its creation five years ago, we can’t help but be a little humbled, and proud of all the hard work that we have put into building Wolf into the company it is today.
This month, Stereophile has announced their picks for their Semi-Annual Recommended Component list, and Wolf has clinched an A+ Recommended component rating for the Alpha 3 SX Server. This is an auspicious day for Wolf Audio Systems because it marks the second time that one of our products has reached A+ level status, and confirms our work in the research and development of digital audio technologies. The Alpha 3 SX has shown itself time and again to be THE digital audio source that people look to when digital audio must perform at its very best. It is the server that other audio manufacturers take on the road with them for shows and demo purposes, and it has become our best-selling server ever. As our user base and industry partners grow, we continue to innovate and create new products and maintain our mission of delivering systems that outperform everything in their price classes (and some well beyond!)
We’d like to extend a big thank you to all of our customers, and a special mention to the several who have been with us from the start – guys and ladies who are now on their second, third or even fourth upgrade. You guys have been instrumental in helping us get our product lines going, providing invaluable feedback on new products and helping us to beta-test new technologies and methodologies. In addition, we’d like to thank Jason Serinus for having us out to the beautiful Port Townsend, Washington, even if it was in the middle of a snowstorm of epic proportions (for Floridians, at least) We appreciate your words, and enjoyed hanging out with you, your dogs and David.
Given the frenetic pace of evolution and development in Digital HiFi, this second A+ rating represents a challenge we are excited to accept: to continue developing award-winning products for audiophiles.
Wolf Systems Alpha 3 server: $7195 as reviewed
Wolf Systems Alpha 3 SX server: $9295 as reviewed
Wolf Audio Systems specializes in configuring eighth-generation, six-core i7 processors for use as silent (no cooling-fan noise) music servers with prodigious computing power—leading KR, Our Man in the Round, to wonder if there existed a sufficiently powerful Wolf to meet the demands of multichannel playback (!) of hi-rez files (!!) with DSP and/or EQ (!!!). Wolf suggested he try the Alpha 3 High Fidelity Audio Server (HFAS), which supports JRiver Media Center and Roon and offers 16GB of RAM, a 2TB SSD for internal storage, and a TEAC Blu-ray transport for ripping and playing CDs. KR was impressed with the Alpha 3—and by Wolf’s semi-customized owner’s manual and telephone and VPN support. He noted that “the Alpha 3 never blinked, blanked, or unceremoniously rebooted itself; it worked silently and reliably.” His verdict: “a great choice for playing hi-rez files of multichannel music.” In his review of the premium Alpha 3 SX version—the SX stands for “Stillpoint/eXemplar Audio” and refers to grounding, vibration management, and RF/EMI rejection technology designed by those two companies—JVS wrote that “from the very first notes, the Alpha 3 SX’s neutrality came as a breath of fresh air.” JVS also auditioned the Alpha 3 SX with the optional Flux Capacitor USB clock card ($600). Without the clock card, he found that “the magic was lessened.” With the USB clock card, depth was “quite good, if not as deep as through my reference Nucleus+ with external linear power supply.” JVS felt the Wolf server was a better match with darker-toned ancillary components but summed up his review by writing “Match the Wolf Alpha 3 SX with the right components, and you may end up howling for joy.” (Vol.42 No.1, Alpha 3 WWW; Vol.43 No.5, Alpha 3 SX WWW)