BEST OF 2018

This has been a great year for new hi-fi, so good that our list has once again expanded so we can include all the best pieces of kit. We have had to make some tough decisions, all of the products chosen by the ear’s reviewers have made a very strong, positive impression both at the […]


If you want digital audio that can compete with the best of analogue get yourself a dedicated audio server, a data store for the bits ripped from CDs or high res downloads. See our reviews of servers by Innuos and Melco to get some idea of what such supercharged NAS drives can achieve. Yet they all require attachment to […]

VEGA G1 main

When Auralic launched its G1 series they took the unusual step of using casework that looks almost exactly like that on the more expensive G2 range, at a glance you have to be reasonably familiar with the range to spot the difference. Which is in the knobs and buttons, G2s have black controls (that you […]

ARIES G2 Front

The Auralic Aries started out as a compact network streamer in a curvy plastic case, it looked cool and sounded even better, eventually spawning an alternate LE version with a lesser clock and basic power supply and a Mini with onboard DAC. Last year the company launched a flagship Aries G2 with a fancy milled case and […]


I don’t suppose it’s deliberate but some companies manage to come up with the most confusing naming for their products and Merging Technologies has joined the club. Originally the Swiss brand brought out the NADAC network attached DAC, essentially a digital to analogue converter with a network connection that meant you could send music data […]


The Chord Mojo DAC and headphone amp is a very nice piece of kit, compact and solid with coloured controls and amazing spec for the size and price, but it was designed to be used with a smartphone, which while undoubtedly very impressive devices are not the last word in high fidelity. A smartphone is […]


Last year Auralic introduced two new products that significantly upped the standard of build seen in their range up to that point. It’s not that the standard Vega or Polaris aren’t well executed and finished but rather that the G2 products are bigger, more substantial and have a form factor that fits in with high […]

best products of 2017

It’s been a bumper year for great new products at the Ear, there have been so many that our list has had to be expanded to cope. But fear not these are still the most essential new products to appear in 2017. The first one has not yet been reviewed on the Ear but René […]


It came as a surprise when I noticed that people were using the word Sonos as a generic name for streaming or multiroom sound systems. The brand has made it to Hoover status in under 15 years. It did this by making affordable attractive  products with a control system that anyone could use, in the […]

Auralic Polaris The Ear

In our steady progress through Auralic’s slowly expanding range of streaming devices we have enjoyed the Aries Mini network streamer and Altair streamer/preamplifier, so it made sense to move onto the Altair based all in one integrated amplifier, DAC and streamer the Polaris. This was until recently the top model but the introduction of the […]


When Naim announced the new Uniti models last year little did we know just how different they would be to the range that was replaced. Gone is the brushed aluminium facia and black paint finish and with it the straightforward rectangular box construction. Now we have a shiny and slick bit of casework design that […]


It says something about the size of the German market that AVM, a brand with a substantial range of high end hardware, was virtually unknown on these shores until it started working with PMC. AVM’s products have so much consistency of industrial design that it’s difficult to tell them apart at a glance, it’s hard […]