December is a month of looking back. What happened? What made an impression? It is also a month of looking forward: what are we going to do differently next year? Or not? But before we start philosophising enormously: first a Top 5. Which device – or which tweak – made an impression?
What a fine pre-amp / dac. It just plays on the level of the Metrum Pavane and Adagio. But then for a lot less money! The Sonnet Morpheus is a real bargain. Neutrality, rhythm, tight bass and no-nonsense NOS sound is what you get. We really can’t wait for what else Cees Ruijtenberg has in store for us!
This active monitor speaker has surprised your editor in the multitest of active speakers. The HEDD sounds super fast, detailed and complete. And for a very acceptable amount: 1300 euros per pair. Normally you just buy a set of nice monitor speakers for that. In short: it is – to put it soberly – a great deal
The pearl of amplifiers in the class of 3000 euros. The Yamaha surprised us in the multitest. So much that we bought it. For 3200 euros you may be able to buy other good amplifiers, but Yamaha offers a beautiful design, also xlr inputs and a ‘smoothness’ that we rarely hear in this price range. Lovely.
Yep… another amplifier. But now an all-rounder: streaming audio, hdmi e-arc, dac, analog in, vinyl… touch-screen and an amazing display. The NAD M33 really does it all. At a high level. Unparalleled beauty. This is mainly thanks to the Eigentakt class-D amplifiers that Lyngdorf has developed in collaboration with Bruno Putzys (Purify). According to your editor, this is the go-to amplifier for those who want everything in one box and are looking for high quality reproduction.
Xavian Premio Esclusivo
Another huge surprise. The Xavian is a pearl from the Czech Republic. Beautifully made, very loose and honest sound and relatively affordable. The speaker reminds us a bit of the Focal. It is also neutral, fast and open. So is this Xavian. But for about 3500 euros less. For many a living room it has enough body and volume. So don’t skip it on your next search!
Bonus: Driade Flow speaker cable
Yep… we have a new speaker cable. The Driade Flow. The reason is not that the Audioquest Oak is a bad cable… certainly not. But the Driade Flow works better in our system: in our opinion it doesn’t add anything. Just like the Grimm TPM / SQM cables. And that’s important. The cable is flexible, affordable and made in Holland … 🙂