A round-up of the news and reviews to have graced What Hi-Fi? this past week – featuring products from Apple, Astell & Kern, Bowers & Wilkins, Samsung and more…

This week Apple announced the launch of not just a new set of iPhones, but a new iPad and a revised Apple TV. B&W took the wraps off the its latest 800 Series of Diamond loudspeakers and Pioneer launched the first ever MQA ready hi-res music player.

On the reviews side there's plenty to get worked up about with Samsung's UE48JU7000 TV, BT's Ultra HD YouView box and Astell & Kern's AK Jr music player coming under our scrutiny.

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News

Apple launches iPhone 6S, iPhone 6S Plus: "Most advanced phones in the world"

It was a week in which Apple dominated as it announced a number of new products at a launch event in California.

New iPhones will be hitting the market with Apple claiming that the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus are the 'most advanced phones in the world'.

A new fourth-generation Apple TV box with a focus towards gaming was announced, along with a bigger version of the iPad Pro, which to us sounds a lot like Microsoft's Surface 2 tablet/laptop hybrid.

MORE: Apple launches iPhone 6S, iPhone 6S Plus: "Most advanced phones in the world"

READ MORE: Apple announces new fourth-gen Apple TV box

READ MORE: Apple launches iPad Pro with 12.9-inch screen

READ MORE: New Apple TV adds 7.1 audio but there's no optical output or 4K video

B&W reveals new 800 Series Diamond speakers

B&W has unveiled its 800 Series Diamond speakers, the culmination of seven years of research, resulting in the company's most technologically advanced speakers.

The new line-up consists of three floorstanding speakers, a standmounter and two centre-channel speakers. 

The range, with the exception of the D300 floorstander, is due to go on sale in October for anyone who has extremely deep pockets.

MORE: B&W reveals new 800 Series Diamond speakers

Pioneer launches world's first MQA-ready hi-res music player

Pioneer has stepped in to the hi-res music player market with the world's first ever MQA-ready player.

A touchscreen device with a 4.7in Full HD screen, the XDP-100R allows users to download services such as Spotify, Tidal and Qobuz with file formats covering everything from low-res files to DSD.

The XDP-100R is due to go on sale sometime in October. Pricing is yet to be confirmed.

MORE: Pioneer launches world's first MQA-ready hi-res music player

More after the break

Reviews

"What your money gets you is a tempting blend of performance, ease of use, and looks"

Samsung UE48JU7000

Easy-to-use and with a brilliant level of contrast and definition, Samsung has yet again hit a high note with its UE48JU7000 4K TV.

It razzle dazzles with 4K content, but doesn't skimp with 1080p either, with good colours and contrast to go along with the detail.

A strong all-rounder - for the price you're getting a very commendable TV.

Read the full Samsung UE48JU7000 review

"No doubt about it – this is most accomplished live TV you can watch right now"

BT Ultra HD box

While there's not a lot of 4K content out there, this set-top box from BT is sure to increase it and from what we've seen it could be worth the step up.

4K simply looks jaw dropping, with BT's own Ultra HD sport channel exploiting the level of detail and clarity the format affords. It's incredibly good, although the HD performance could be improved.

Still there's not a lot of 4K content out there, and the price for so little content looks steep. In that respect, it will hopefully improve but if you're in the Venn diagram of being a) a football fan, and b) have BT Infinity, this Ultra HD box could be worth the admission.

Read the full BT Ultra HD box review

"There’s decent separation to the sound, generous bass weight and plenty of vocal passion exposed in the midrange"

Astell & Kern AK Jr

The one thing that's been keeping hi-res players out of consumers' hands is probably affordability. Astell & Kern's AK Jr goes some way to alleviating that problem.

It looks great in a minimalist way and the sound is assertive, drawing your attention with a sound that refuses to be meek.

So while £400 is still above the average you'd pay for a standard music player, it's otherwise hard to find fault with the AK Jr. Buy and enjoy.

Read the full Astell & Kern AK Jr review