I first noticed the brand name Axxess when I visited Audio Group Denmark in Aalborg last summer. This mysterious name was present on so much of the signage and promotional materials along with Aavik, Ansuz and Børresen. I asked someone about it–I can’t remember the answer, so they may have been a tad secretive at the time.
Words and Photos by Marc Phillips
When I attended the Florida Audio Expo in February, the Axxess mystery was finally solved. Axxess is the name of Audio Group Denmark’s entry level marque, and the first Axxess product is the new Forté 1 (soon to be followed by the 2 and the 3). The Axxess Forté 1 is a streaming amplifier, which means it’s an all-in-one–integrated amplifier, DAC, streamer, headphone amp and more. While many of you were shocked at some of the prices of Audio Group Denmark gear that employs their latest groundbreaking technologies, based on the use of very expensive materials that reduce inductance from the signal path, this is the response. It’s a doozy.
The Axxess line is almost a gift–the Forté 1 sells for just $5,500. I’ve heard this system twice now, with the Ansuz PowerSwitch A3 ethernet switch and Mainz8 A3 power distribution and the Børresen X3 loudspeakers–all which are far more affordable than expected. And yet I sat down in the room and listened for a few tracks and it was like being in Aalborg again, listening to every single combination of gear. In other words, this was not a slightly-less-special version of anything. This sounded like Audio Group Denmark, with its impossibly low noise floor and detail and yes, a very analog-like delivery of digital streaming.
Sure, the mega-system Audio Group Denmark assembled at AXPONA, the one with the mind-blowing M3 speakers (at $280,000/pr), is in a class of its own. But if I was a civilian and I wanted a system that could stream this beautifully I would jump on it. I might even use the Axxess Forté 1 for just a headphone rig. The more I think about this, the more I feel like I should do it. As I said, Axxess is a gift from Aalborg, and I’m grateful Audio Group Denmark saw this opportunity and went for it. Superb gear.
If you would like to hear even more coverage from AXPONA 2023, check out our recap report and highlights from our audiophile-oriented show The Occasional Podcast. You can stream the episode direct from the embed below, or from your favorite podcast platform including iTunes, Android, Google, Deezer, Spotify, iHeartRadio and more.
Also don’t forget to check out our collaboration to commemorate the event with our solid bronze record weight available only for a limited run. This 800 grams of solid bronze features the PTA roundel on the top with also acts as a 45 adapter. You can purchase direct from the PTA Approved Store here on the site.