Esoteric Grandioso P1X SE

Esoteric Grandioso P1X SE

Tokyo, Japan | 2024 – Super Audio CD Transport Grandioso P1X SE: Esoteric’s Premier Super Audio CD Transport, with Separate Power Supply Unit.


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Since its inception in 1987, Esoteric has been at the forefront of innovation as a high-end audio brand from Japan, continually pushing the boundaries of high quality sound reproduction. The Esoteric brand is known for its outstanding acoustic engineering that has sustained its reputation and prestige, its massive investment without regard to cost, its “museum quality” craftsmanship, and its beautiful designs worthy of music reproduction. “Grandioso” is the top model in each product category that has reached the highest level of quality defined by the brand.

In classical music, a phrase that indicates how a piece of music should be played is called a conception motto. For example, “cantabile” (as if singing), “legato” (smoothly), and so on. A flagship model should have the dignity and stature of a top-of-the-line product. We named it “grandioso” (grand, majestic, dignified), which we likened to the motto of classical music. Grandioso has brought a number of highly original innovations to the world of high-end audio, including the legendary VRDS-ATLAS Super Audio CD transport mechanism, the Master Sound Discrete DAC and the Master Sound Discrete Clock, which consist of unique discrete circuits.

Finally, three SE models are now available with new discrete clock technology and improved analog circuitry in the DAC. We are proud of our brand and always strive for the best sound.
The SE model we are releasing this time reflects every conceivable technological accumulation from the time the original model was launched to the present. Enjoy the enhanced presence, dynamics, and beautifully organic and musical textures of the three new SE models.

VRDS Atlas

An Unprecedented Transport Mechanism That Invites You to the Furthest Reaches of Sound.

Esoteric Grandioso P1X SE

VRDS (Vibration-Free Rigid Disc-Clamping System) is Esoteric’s unique CD/Super Audio CD transport technology, which has been specially designed to clamp the disc to a same-diameter turntable in order to eliminate the disc’s rotational vibration, as well as any extraneous vibration emanating from the mechanism itself. It also corrects any warpage of the disc dramatically improving the accuracy of both the optical pickup and the disc pit layer’s corresponding optical axis while also minimizing servo current. This all adds up to dramatically reduced disc read error for exceptional audio quality.


Esoteric Grandioso P1X SE

It has been 16 years since the VRDS-NEO Super Audio CD transport mechanism first debuted in 2003. Improving on the NEO transport posed a difficult challenge, as it had long been praised as offering the highest audio reproduction performance in the industry. However, the design was totally reengineered from the ground up, resulting in a completely new platform that boasts unparalleled levels of structural refinement and audio fidelity.

The Highest Rigidity and Heaviest Construction in the History of VRDS

Esoteric Grandioso P1X SE

ATLAS boasts the highest rigidity and weight in the history of VRDS mechanisms. With its larger new SS400 steel side panels and bridge, the ATLAS is 27% heavier (6.6kg mechanism unit, 13.5kg including base) than the NEO, achieving both exceptional rigidity and impressive tone. It also dampens any and all vibration that might adversely affect audio quality. The turntable is machined from solid duralumin for excellent audio quality, and its spindle features a newly designed thrust bearing system. This friction-free one-point spindle support system ensures smooth, noiseless turntable rotation.

Wide & Low Center-of-Gravity Design

One of the keys to achieving the quietest mechanism in VRDS history is mechanical grounding technology that efficiently dampens vibration. By adopting a wide and low profile for the mechanism’s design, the entire construction now features a low center of gravity. The turntable’s drive system has also been refined and its motor moved to below the turntable from its previous position above the bridge, thus shortening the route for grounding vibration and greatly reducing mechanical noise.

Elegant Tray Mechanism Operation

Esoteric Grandioso P1X SE

The tray’s form has been designed for the least possible resonance by minimizing hollowing, and boasts exceptionally smooth opening and closing operation with very little play. The use of special vibration-damping elastomer resin also further minimizes tray resonance during music playback.

ES-Link5 Digital Transmission

Esoteric’s own ES-Link digital interface utilizes HDMI cables for signal transmission. With the introduction of the P1X SE / D1X SE, ES-Link has been further upgraded to Ver. 5 and supports an even wider range of superior sound quality formats (Max. 22.5MHz DSD and 768kHz/48-bit PCM). HDMI’s multi-conductor structure permits full balance transmission of audio data and LR clock and bit clock signals.
This differs from regular digital transmission as signal modulation is not required on the sender side and demodulation processing is not required on the receiver side, thus dramatically reducing digital processing loads on the DAC side and enabling ideal digital transmission.


MarleyEsoteric Grandioso P1X SE

Dual-Chassis Construction with Separate Power Supply

Esoteric Grandioso P1X SE

The P1X SE’s power supply, as a fundamental source of vibration, has from its very first iteration been designed and constructed as a separate yet integral unit in order to achieve the quietest possible disc read characteristics and higher audio quality.

Four Independent Toroidal Power Supply Transformers

Esoteric Grandioso P1X SE

The power supply incorporates a total of four independent toroidal transformers, which provide each circuit with a clean and powerful supply of electricity.

Low-Feedback DC Regulators

Both the P1X SE and D1X SE feature low-feedback discrete DC regulators. The reduction in feedback level helps achieve a vibrantly energetic sound that seemingly overflows with a sensation of openness.

EDLC Super Capacitors

Both the P1X SE and D1X SE include EDLC* super capacitors throughout their power supply circuitry. The P1X utilizes a total of 38 EDLCs (with a combined capacity of 1,400,00μF or 1.4F), while the D1X features a total of 50 EDLCs (for a combined capacity of 1,300,000μF/1.3F) for the pair. Through this maximization of power supply capacity, remarkable improvements in low-range resolution and audio quality have been achieved.
* EDLC(Electric Double-Layer Capacitor): Developed as next-generation power devices for the electric vehicle industry, these capacitors are attracting wider attention as cutting-edge technology due to their exceptionally high capacitance.

Master Sound Discrete Clock for Digital Player

Esoteric Grandioso P1X SE

It is no exaggeration to say that the clock circuitry is the biggest key to high sound quality in digital music reproduction. For its flagship master clock generator Grandioso G1X, Esoteric has perfected its own in-house manufactured OCXO clock module, the Master Sound Discrete Clock. The G1X’s unique discrete circuitry has been highly acclaimed for its superior musical expressiveness, creating a buzz in the world of high-end audio that has traditionally been described only in terms of technical specifications.

The “Master Sound Discrete Clock for Digital Player” used in the P1X SE applies the basic design concept of G1X’s in-house manufactured OCXO module to the internal clock of the digital player models. The unique circuit design using carefully selected discrete components, such as a large crystal oscillator, achieves high sound quality that reflects Esoteric’s philosophy in every detail, which cannot be achieved with an off-the-shelf clock module. The P1X SE can also be connected to the Grandioso G1X external master clock generator to improve sound quality by synchronizing the internal circuitry to an even more accurate 10 MHz clock.

Multilayer Chassis

Special care was also taken in the chassis construction of each unit, with a rigid, heavy-duty, thick aluminum panel enclosure to ensure thorough vibration control. The bottom chassis, to which each circuit component is attached, adopts a multi-layer structure using multiple steel plates. The power transformer and other components are fixed on separate layers and placed in a three-dimensional arrangement to prevent mutual interference between each component. Esoteric’s original Pinpoint foot*, which integrates a spike and saucer, has been replaced with a new foot that is not bolted to the lower chassis, but is held in place by the weight of the chassis when installed. By avoiding the stress concentration caused by screwing the Pinpoint foot body into the large surface area of the lower chassis, a more open sound is created.
*Patent JP4075477 / JP3778108

Esoteric Grandioso P1X SE
Grandioso P1X SE’s Newly Designed Pinpoint Foot

Semi Floating Top Panel

The enclosure’s top panel utilizes a screwless semi-floating structure that further contributes to an open and expansive sound.

Double-Faced Remote Control

Esoteric Grandioso P1X SE

A compact and simple remote control is included that can also operate Esoteric amplifiers. The functional design features buttons used for each operation scenario on both sides of the remote control, and the smartphone-sized aluminum body, which fits comfortably in the hand, is achieved through advanced metal processing. Esoteric’s new approach is a design that allows you to experience thoughtful operability and craftsmanship every time you pick it up.

Spec description

Playable disc types Super Audio CD, CD (including CD-R and CD-RW)
Digital audio outputs  
XLR 2 pairs(During Dual AES output, one connector each for left and right channels of a stereo pair)
RCA 1 pair
Clock input  
Input imepedance 50Ω
Input level Sine wave 0.5 to 1.0Vrms
Input frequency 10MHz (±10ppm)
Power supply  
  AC 220 – 240V, 50/60Hz
  AC 120V, 60Hz
  AC 220V, 60Hz
Power consumption 20W
External dimensions (W×H×D)  
Main unit 445 × 162 × 449mm
17-⅝” × 6-½” × 17-¾” (including protrusions)
Power supply unit 445 × 132 × 452mm
17-⅝” × 5-¼” × 17-⅞” (including protrusions)
Main unit 29kg / 64 lb
Power supply unit 24kg / 53 lb
Included accessories Power cord set × 1
DC power connection cord × 2
HDMI cable × 1
Remote control (RC-1333) × 1
AA batteries × 2
Felt pads × 8
Owner’s manual × 1
Warranty card × 1


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