Josh said: While it may be considered for some to be expensive, its performance capabilities in so many areas frankly exceed what could be achieved in preamplifier-amplifier separate combinations at far loftier price points, therefore making it an attractive proposition as a statement amplifier for those slightly short of space or for those demanding electronics capable of the very highest standards.
The gist: Sound that is said to strike a near perfect balance between tube and solid state.
Roger said: I can’t overstate how impressed I was by the execution of its overall design. In my years as an audio reviewer, the STR Integrated is one of the most impressive examples of a fully fledged audio product I’ve come across.
The gist: Anthem Room Correction puts this powerful integrated over the top.
Al said: Cocktail Audio’s Swiss-Army-knife approach to designing the X35 music system has resulted in a winning proposition for those looking to reduce their systems’ footprints without compromising their performance.
The gist: A list of features a mile long.
Al said: The Triad One is an affordable way to enter the world of Control4, a leading platform for home automation and A/V system control.
The gist: Enter the world of the Smart-home hi-fi amplifier.
Uday said: Ayre’s AX-5 Twenty has long been my favorite integrated amplifier. But unless there’s a plan to include an optional DAC module in the Ayre, I now have to recommend the Diablo 120. “Our higher goal is to bring to the listener a ‘You-Are-There’ sensation”? Mission accomplished, Gryphon.
The gist: The smallest beast from Denmark’s Gryphon.
Hans said: The H590 may be expensive for a Hegel, but in the rarefied atmosphere of reference-level integrated amplifier-DACs, it’s a bargain. I’ve never encountered another amplifier that blends power, grace, and honesty with such consummate ease.
The gist: Hegel’s current best integrated amp-DAC.
Sathyan said: Including the SoundEngine technology of upmarket Hegel models, the H90 punches well above the level you might expect from a DAC-integrated at its price -- Hegel’s attention to dynamics, detail, and transparency shone through. The Hegel H90 is well worth hearing.
The gist: Solid way to spend two grand on your hi-fi.
Jeff said: When the fit’n’finish that McIntosh has lavished on the MA9000 is factored in, the result is the most easily recommendable product I’ve reviewed in years -- a Reviewers’ Choice with a bullet, and an early leader in our 2018 race for Product of the Year.
The gist: Retro looks, super sound, and impressive functionality . . . and it has blue meters.
Al said: The main attraction of Musical Fidelity’s M6 Encore 225 is its outstanding sound quality -- in this case, performance lives up to price. And with built-in CD ripping, Tidal and Spotify streaming, and a pledge from Musical Fidelity to introduce future software updates and enhancements, the M6 Encore 225 is a solid bet for an all-in-one music system.
The gist: Audiophile-oriented all-in-one-type product.
Brent said: Its sound is comparable to that of the far more expensive and powerful gear I normally use, and it’s so refreshingly simple to operate that the mere lack of frustration on the user’s part has to be worth something.
The gist: Values sound over features, and costs a pittance.
Thom said: If you’re not someone who fiddles with tone controls, if your listening room is of reasonable size and your speakers are of at least moderate sensitivity, I recommend the NAD C 328. It’s a superb integrated amplifier-DAC.
The gist: Unbelievable amount of quality for the money.
Sathyan said: As was its ancestor the 3020, the D 3020 V2 is an affordable entry to the audio hobby, and is well suited to powering a small system for very little outlay.
The gist: Adds Bluetooth and phono capabilities to a classic design.
Vince said: NAD’s T777 V3 is an excellent audio/video receiver that includes most of the features you’d want in a centerpiece for your home theater.
Read the SoundStage! Access review.
The gist: The Dirac room correction and strong amp are the selling points here.
Al said: Peachtree Audio’s decco125 Sky is packed with useful features, including a built-in phono stage and Wi-Fi streaming. It also offers impressive sound quality for an $1199 integrated amplifier-DAC, sounding great with everything I played, from LPs and streamed playlists to “sad church music” on CD.
The gist: A few operational quirks keep it from being a knockout product.
Philip said: Simaudio’s Moon 240i is set apart by the high level of quality you get for its low price of $2100.
The gist: Add to good sound lots of features and a ten-year warranty and you have a winner.
Edgar said: The Soulution 330 is a superb example of the integrated amplifier craft. I'm expecting big things from Soulution in the future and am very curious to see what's next from this Swiss wizard.
The gist: Very engaging sound from this expensive integrated amp.
Jeff said: Not only did I really enjoy my time with the PA 3100 HV -- I could easily envision my no-compromise self living with one long term. I bet you’d feel the same way.
The gist: Big, expensive, great integrated amplifier.
Al said: With the Ottava f SC-C70, Technics has created a sleek-looking all-in-one system that combines wired and wireless streaming with CD playback.
The gist: Technics is something cool again!
Price: Base unit AU$4495, as tested AU$16,355
Edgar said: LIO is an exceptional performer through all the configurations tested. It’s natural, smooth yet resolving, capable of great transient attack, pleasingly – and only marginally – mellow-sounding through the midrange and highs while being a strong walloper with its tight and fast bass. Its tonal accuracy and harmonic decay is exemplary too.
The gist: Literally make it exactly what you want it to be.
Edgar said: Along with a handful of ultimate integrated amplifiers, the Vitus Audio RI-101 commands a recalibration of what an integrated amplifier is capable of achieving in terms of performance. Consequently, it would make for a thoroughly satisfying entry into the ranks of the very best amplification available.
The gist: Competes with some of the best amplification regardless of cost.
Edgar said: the Vitus Audio RI-101 is a stupendous sonic performer, excelling at the vividness and life of music while sustaining its tonal beauty, midrange purity and exerting tight-fisted control over its prodigious output in terms of dynamics and its low frequencies output
The gist: Monster integrated that hangs with big separates.