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2019 SoundStage! Network Equipment Buying Guide

Price: $99.99

Website: www.usa.1more.com

Brent said: Like all the other true wireless earphones we’ve tried, the 1More E1026BT-Is don’t work sonic miracles, but their sound comes pretty close to the best of them at a fraction of the price.

Read the SoundStage! Solo review.

The gist: A bargain in good wireless earphones.

Price: AU$18,800

Website: www.aquahifi.com

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.”

Read the SoundStage! Australia review.

The gist: Modularity adds value to this DAC.

Price: $30,000 per pair

Website: www.audioresearch.com

Aron said: I found the Reference 160M captivatingly enjoyable to listen to, despite a slight roundness and lack of texture in the bass.

Read the SoundStage! Ultra review.

The gist: The new ARC look is a big improvement.

Price: $5999

Website: us.auralic.com

Jeff said: You can insert an Auralic Vega G2 in your audio system and be confident that you’re hearing everything on your recordings -- as long as the rest of your system is up to the task. It’s not this DAC that will be the limiting factor, I can assure you.

Reviewers' Choice

Read the SoundStage! Ultra review.

The gist: Amazingly transparent DAC at a great price.

Price: $799

Website: www.bluesound.com

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.

Read the SoundStage! Simplifi review.

The gist: The BluOS software sets this apart from most wireless speakers.

Price: $1199

Website: www.bluesound.com

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.

Read the SoundStage! Simplifi review.

The gist: The BluOS software is really the thing here.

Price: $5000

Website: www.boulderamp.com

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.

Read the SoundStage! Hi-Fi review.

The gist: New price point for this super-high-end company.

Price: $1800 USD per pair

Website: www.bowers-wilkins.com

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.

Read the SoundStage! Access review.

The gist: Lot of B&W speaker for the money.

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