Hardware Reviews

integrated amplifier
Sep 2019
Back in the first decade of this century, I was a well-paid employee of a well known high tech firm, that’s when I bought my first piece of Naim equipment, a CD5X disc player. Within five years that had somehow grown into...
standmount loudspeaker
Sep 2019
Once a loudspeaker company gets to a certain size it can start to use the tech developed for its most advanced designs in the more affordable ranges at the opposite end of the scale. It’s not exactly an economy of scale more...
DAC/headphone/preamp
Sep 2019
Hugo TT 2 is Chord Electronics’ next-generation table-top (TT) DAC/headphone amplifier, the 2 indicating it that has undergone extensive upgrades to bring it within touching distance of the company’s flagship DAVE DAC at a ...
bookshelf loudspeaker
Sep 2019
Back in the spring when the editor asked me if I fancied reviewing the new JBL L100s I didn’t have to think about it long. People of my vintage (not a word I use lightly in this context!) may have fond memories of those days...
streaming bridge
Sep 2019
If you want to become an audio equipment manufacturer the easiest part of a system to make would appear to be a loudspeaker. All you need is a nice cabinet, a set of drive units and a crossover, half of which can be bought...
standmount loudspeaker
Aug 2019
Having visited the Diapason headquarters a couple of years ago I discovered first-hand the commitment involved in each and every pair of hand-made speakers from this renowned Italian brand. So, when the opportunity arose to...
Integrated amplifier
Aug 2019
One of my very first reviews for the Ear, almost a year ago, was of the YBA Passion IA350 integrated amplifier and the matching CD430 disc player. I was very impressed with them and so when the UK distributor asked if I...
Digital Analogue Converter DAC
Aug 2019
With the rise of online music services, the demand for high-quality digital to analogue converters is increasing. The use of Tidal, Qobuz and Spotify streaming services as an addition to home music collections has become...
integrated amplifier
Jul 2019
To describe the Norwegian-conceived Hegel H190 as merely an integrated amplifier does it a disservice. Successor to the award-winning H160 it benefits from company founder Bent Holter’s refined SoundEngine2, first seen in...
floor standing loudspeaker
Jul 2019
2019 is becoming a very Italian year in my audio life. Like many of us immersed in this hobby in the UK I was aware of a few Italian brands but this year I have had the privilege to hear several which were hitherto not on my...
standmount loudspeaker
Jul 2019
Launched last year, the 607 is the smallest and most affordable model in Bowers & Wilkins’ latest 600 Series. The line-up includes seven designs in total, including subwoofers and a centre channel for surround sound set-...
Integrated amplifier
Jul 2019
I have always been a sucker for Constellation Audio, before I even heard one I was smitten. There are many ultra fi electronics brands in the high end omniverse but none makes products that look as good as a Constellation....

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