Thursday, January 18, 2018

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2010 SoundStage! Network Equipment Buying Guide

KEF XQ40Price: $4500 per pair

Website: www.kef.com

Aron said: From top to bottom, KEF’s XQ flagship is an exceedingly well-built, classically styled tower that sounds as good as it looks. It may not be the last word in neutrality across the entire audioband, and it might require some close attention in being paired with other audio gear, but the best things in life are never easy, and I have yet to hear a speaker in this price range that can match its low-end prowess.

Reviewers' Choice

Read the SoundStage! Xperience review.

The gist: Great-value speaker with innovative KEF technology.

Von Schweikert Audio UniField 1Price: $3995 per pair

Website: www.vonschweikert.com

Philip said: In terms of precision and soundstaging, it is the finest speaker I’ve ever reviewed. It embodies a unique approach to cabinet design, and comes from the workshop of a man who has spent years fine-tuning his craft.

Read the SoundStage! Hi-Fi review.

The gist: Coaxial driver in a great box designed by Albert himself.

Compact WZ-5 SEPrice: $4500 per pair

Website: www.grantfidelity.com

Colin said: The Compact WZ-5 SE Collector’s Edition isn’t a totally bad speaker, but it doesn’t perform at anywhere near the level of such peers as the Definitive Technology Mythos ST, PSB Synchrony One ($4500/pair), or even the less-expensive Paradigm Studio 100 ($3599/pair).

Read the SoundStage! Hi-Fi review.

The gist: Just not very good.

201011_focus_fp50Price: $4300 per pair

Website: www.focusaudio.com

Doug said: The Prestige FP50 is not inexpensive, but it will be ideal for a particular type of listener: someone who wants exceptional refinement of build quality and sound in a loudspeaker that will complement a smallish listening room.

Read the SoundStage! Hi-Fi review.

The gist: Almost SOTA sound, but needs a sub.

201010_ml_motion12Price: $1499.95 per pair

Website: www.martinlogan.com

Ron said: . . . the Motion 12 did the midrange very well indeed. If MartinLogan made a point of focusing on this aspect of music reproduction in the design of the Motion 12, then I can hardly fault that choice. Ultimately, the Motion 12 shines where it matters most.

Read the SoundStage! Access review.

The gist: MartinLogans for everyman.

201010_bwPrice: $1500 per pair

Website: www.bowers-wilkins.com

Jeff said: The best audio products make bad recordings sound tolerable, good recordings sound better, and great recordings sound sublime. Irrespective of source or perceived quality of amplification, the B&W CM5 did this. It made a case for spending what it takes to get the speakers you want and, if need be, scrimping on everything else.

Reviewers' Choice

Read the SoundStage! Hi-Fi review.

The gist: You just can't go wrong with a CM-series B&W.

201007_psb_image_t6_300hPrice: $1199 per pair

Website: www.psbspeakers.com  

Philip said: The T6 performed extremely well in so many areas that, for its asking price of $1199/pair, it’s very difficult to beat. There are other speakers I would consider over the T6, but all of them cost at least twice as much.

Reviewers' Choice

Read the SoundStage! review.

The gist: Image beats Platnium for less money.

201007_argon3_black_b_300hPrice: $2795 per pair in black or white (add $200 per pair for real-wood veneer)

Website: www.amphion.fi

Philip said: Amphion’s Argon3 is the finest-sounding bookshelf speaker I’ve ever reviewed for the SoundStage! Network. It has outclassed my longtime reference, PSB’s Platinum M2. The torch has been passed. 

Reviewers' Choice

Read the SoundStage! review.

The gist: The third time's the charm for the Argon.

Subcategories


Loudspeakers reviewed on the SoundStage! Network in 2010 in the context of a stereo system. All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted and are accurate at the time of the review.

The entries are shown alphabetically by company name.

Loudspeakers reviewed on the SoundStage! Network in 2010 in the context of a stereo system. All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted and are accurate at the time of the review.

The entries are shown alphabetically by company name.


Loudspeakers reviewed on the SoundStage! Network in 2010 in the context of a stereo system. All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted and are accurate at the time of the review.

The entries are shown alphabetically by company name.

Loudspeakers reviewed on the SoundStage! Network in 2010 in the context of a home-theater system. All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted and are accurate at the time of the review.

The entries are shown alphabetically by company name.


Loudspeakers reviewed on the SoundStage! Network in 2010 in the context of a home-theater system. All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted and are accurate at the time of the review.

The entries are shown alphabetically by company name.

Subwoofers reviewed on the SoundStage! Network in 2010 in the context of a stereo and/or home-theater system. All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted and are accurate at the time of the review.

The entries are shown alphabetically by company name.


Turntables, phono stages, cartridges, etc., reviewed on the SoundStage! Network in 2010. All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted and are accurate at the time of the review.

The entries are shown alphabetically by company name.

Stereo digital source components (CD and SACD players, DACs, music servers, etc.) reviewed on the SoundStage! Network in 2010. All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted and are accurate at the time of the review.

The entries are shown alphabetically by company name.

Stereo integrated amplifiers and receivers reviewed on the SoundStage! Network in 2010. All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted and are accurate at the time of the review.

The entries are shown alphabetically by company name.

Preamplifiers reviewed on the SoundStage! Network in 2010. All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted and are accurate at the time of the review.

The entries are shown alphabetically by company name.

Mono, stereo and multichannel power amplifiers $5000 and under reviewed on the SoundStage! Network in 2010. All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted and are accurate at the time of the review.

The entries are shown alphabetically by company name.

Mono, stereo and multichannel power amplifiers over $5000 reviewed on the SoundStage! Network in 2010. All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted and are accurate at the time of the review.

The entries are shown alphabetically by company name.


Home-theater components reviewed on the SoundStage! Network in 2010. All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted and are accurate at the time of the review.

The entries are shown alphabetically by company name.

Projectors and video displays reviewed on the SoundStage! Network in 2010 in the context of a home-theater system. All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted and are accurate at the time of the review.

The entries are shown alphabetically by company name.

Analog interconnects and speaker cables, digital interconnects, and power cords reviewed on the SoundStage! Network in 2010. All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted and are accurate at the time of the review.

The entries are shown alphabetically by company name.


Power conditioners and power cords reviewed on the SoundStage! Network in 2010. All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted and are accurate at the time of the review.

The entries are shown alphabetically by company name.

Accessories, stands and other uncategorized products reviewed on the SoundStage! Network in 2010. All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted and are accurate at the time of the review.

The entries are shown alphabetically by company name.

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