Taiko Audio are an innovative Dutch high end audio laboratory, passionate about both music and technology their painstaking research and development, coupled with their background in engineering, science and IT has led them to develop the SGM Extreme.The SGM Extreme is essentially a state of art of the music server, designed to act as the very best storage device for local files and streaming from Tidal and Qobuz as well.
Emerging from many years of research, development and lots of listening the SGM Extreme was the result. No stone was left unturned during the development process and Taiko paid huge attention to factors such as resonance control, prevention of electric pollution, reliability and user friendliness. Its modular nature means it is future-proof from both a software and hardware aspect. A good example of this is the development of their own control interface called TAS which was designed to elevate performance above Roon (which already sounds rather special!), Taiko added an optional Extreme USB Card a couple of years ago and in March 2023 they have just released an Extreme Network Card and Extreme Network Switch.
Taiko was founded by the genius that is Emile Bok, I first met Emile at Munich a couple of years ago and the lengthy conversation we had then always stayed with me. Fast forward to today, business has grown and I’m proud to have a Taiko Extreme on permanent demonstration.
Available in black or silver, the SGM Extreme is not for the faint of heart, it is priced at £30,000 but if you have a serious system and want the very best digital transport in the world…..well, here it is!
The Extreme SGM Server is now priced to include both the Extreme USB Card and the Extreme Network Card as standard and my demo unit has both fitted and I also have the Extreme Switch on demonstration too.
You get 2TB of storage as standard (easily enough for around 3000 CD quality albums, but you can spec it all the way to 28TB depending on the size of your music library. Each additional 2TB you add costs £300.00, for what it costs I would recommend to get an extra couple of memory modules, in the context of the Extreme itself they aren’t expensive and it means you will have ample storage space for the future.
The SGM Extreme is a digital transport, so you need to connect it to a DAC, connecting via USB is by far and away the most popular option. Should you possess an older DAC without USB you do have the option to specify legacy outputs such as AES/EBU (including dual wire AES for dCS owners) or S/PDIF for additional cost. To be fair most people use USB to connect to their DAC, as mentioned above the Taiko SGM Extreme now comes as standard with the Extreme USB Card fitted (as well as the new Extreme Network Card).
The Extreme Network Card was released in March 2023 and create an even quieter, lower noise environment for the Extreme which dramatically improves performance, especially when combined with their new Extreme Network Switch
The SGM Extreme was designed first and foremost to be used as both a Roon Core and Endpoint and it really excels at application. I can pretty much guarantee you will never have heard Roon sound so real and so alive, but never wanting to stand still Emile and his team and been developing their own interface/control point so if you don’t want to use Roon (not everyone does) you have another option. XDMS is currently in beta release but I’m delighted to announce it sounds significantly better than playing using Roon and that goes for both stored files and music streamed as well.
Weighing in at 45kg the SGM Extreme won’t be the easiest thing to move around but home demonstrations are absolutely no problem at all and demonstrations in my listening room can obviously be arranged as well.