Mark Levinson Reference Surround
Mark Levinson led the way for top in-car audio, and still supplies Lexus exclusively.
Mark Levinson led the way for top in-car audio, and still supplies Lexus exclusively. Don’t be swayed by the numbers: as with Meridian, output is measured with a different THD+N (Total Harmonic Distortion plus Noise) rating.
On its own, the system sounds great with plenty of power and an involving sound. But ultimately, like the LS itself, it lacks its rivals’ composure and ultimate quality. Its delicate top-end sounds and bass don’t have the crispness of the B&O or Meridian, while the electronics separate the stereo channels into full surround mode less successfully. Lexus’ touchscreen control system isn’t that simple, either.
Unlike most rivals, though, you don’t have to pay extra – this Mark Levinson set-up comes as standard on every LS.
- Rating: 3/5
- Price: standard
- Output: 450w
- Speakers: 19
In this review
- 1IntroductionTop-end cars call for top-end sounds. Here’s our pick of the best available
- 2Bang & Olufsen Advanced Sound SystemWhen it comes to drama, the sight of tweeters rising from the A8’s dash takes some beating – as does the sound they create.
- 3Bose Premium Surround SoundThis system has the most unusually sited tweeters – two in each seat, at shoulder height
- 4Meridian Surround Sound SystemThe Evoque is the first example of Jaguar Land Rover’s new partnership with Cambridge-based Meridian, and the signs are good for a fine system in the imminent new Range Rover.
- 5Mark Levinson Reference Surround - currently readingMark Levinson led the way for top in-car audio, and still supplies Lexus exclusively.
- 6Bang & Olufsen BeoSound AMG
- 7Burmester High-end Surround Sound SystemBurmester might not be a household name in the UK, but in Germany it’s synonymous with high-end hi-fi.
- 8Meridian Surround SoundJaguar has made the bold decision to switch audio supplier from Bowers & Wilkins to Meridian