Peter said: For me, for the time being, and especially when you factor in the xHD’s value for often bleeding-edge performance, I’d call it a “bargain and the best I ever had.”
The gist: Modularity adds value to this DAC.
Price: $30,000 per pair
Aron said: I found the Reference 160M captivatingly enjoyable to listen to, despite a slight roundness and lack of texture in the bass.
The gist: The new ARC look is a big improvement.
Gordon said: The Bluesound Pulse 2i is an excellent-sounding, all-in-one stereo music system made more appealing by such features as AirPlay 2 support, upgraded Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, and Alexa voice control.
The gist: The BluOS software sets this apart from most wireless speakers.
Gordon said: In short, while new features like support of AirPlay 2, Siri voice control, and two-way Bluetooth add to the Vault 2i’s appeal, what’s most impressive about the product is its unique functionality, and the overall excellence of the BluOS software platform.
The gist: The BluOS software is really the thing here.
Oliver said: To those looking for a straightforward, fuss-free phono preamplifier that prioritizes sound quality, I say put the Boulder 508 at the very top of your audition list: It’s my top choice in a solid-state phono stage at or near $5000.
The gist: New price point for this super-high-end company.
Price: $1800 USD per pair
Philip said: Yes, you do get a lot of speaker in the Bowers & Wilkins 603. This big speaker in a stout cabinet is built to produce high outputs in big rooms.
The gist: Lot of B&W speaker for the money.
Price: $2500 per pair; stands, $500/pair
Diego said: In my relatively small room, the 705 S2s provided very clean, tight, powerful bass for their size; an exceptionally detailed and extended top end; and a rich, textured midrange devoid of cabinet colorations.
The gist: Solid effort from B&W if you like the high-frequency voicing.
Edgar said: While it may require a minor readjustment to accept yet another device into the signal chain, there’s no denying the performance payoff more than justifies it.
The gist: Add this to your Chord stack for even more performance.