Pick of the month: the LG C4 OLED, Q Acoustics 5050 and more earn perfect marks from our reviewers

Hi-fi and TVs on a white to grey background
(Image credit: What Hi-Fi?)

April is done and dusted, but what a month it was. Not only did we run a special Vinyl Week event to celebrate Record Store Day, but we also awarded seven products perfect scores.

These ranged from impressive affordable turntables to audiophile-level CD players. Here’s what you need to know about all the top products that have passed through our test room in the past 30 days.

Q Acoustics 5050 

Q Acoustics 5050 floorstanding speakers

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The Q Acoustics 5050 are the latest entry into the hi-fi brand’s 5000 range, which aims to target a more premium end of the market, to pass through our listening rooms. 

The 5050 is a big departure from the older Q Acoustics 5040 we reviewed last year. At a hardware and design level, the biggest change is the inclusion of larger twin mid-bass drivers and a bigger cabinet. The combination radically changes their sonic character with the 5050 having a bigger focus on dynamism, clarity and agility based on our listening. Despite the shift, the speakers are excellent, delivering stellar results, when matched properly, during all our checks. This led our reviewers to conclude: 

"The Q Acoustics 5040 are even-handed performers that simply step out of the way of the music and let it shine. When partnered with care they deliver a wonderfully expressive and insightful performance that’s class-leading at this level."

Score: 5/5

Read our Q Acoustics 5050 review

Vertere Dark Sabre

Vertere Dark Sabre MM cartridge

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The Vertere Dark Sabre is an interesting unit with a singular purpose: to establish itself as the ultimate moving magnet cartridge and a valid option for serious vinyl fans with premium set-ups. 

Based on our testing it does just that and manages to match the performance of many premium moving coil rivals. Paired with a Cyrus Phono Signature/PSX-R2 phono stage, Burmester 088/911 MkIII amplifier and ATC SCM50 speakers in our reference set-up it delivered a dynamic, punchy and entertaining sound that delighted our reviewers. Our conclusion says it all:

“If you are looking to buy a cartridge at this level, don’t ignore the Dark Sabre. It is something of a gem.”

Score: 5/5

Read our Vertere Dark Sabre review

Rekkord Audio F110

Rekkord Audio F110 turntable

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If you’re looking for a great value fully automatic record player then you’ll want to consider the Rekkord Audio F110. The cost-effective turntable proved to be a great entry point to the world of vinyl when we reviewed it. As well as being blissfully easy to set up and run, the record player delivered great audio, considering its price. Whether it was classic jazz or moody 12-bar blues, the unit delivered a cohesive, organised sound when paired with our reference system. Hence our conclusion: 

“If you are after a fuss-free record player, give this Rekkord serious thought. It is simple to use while delivering a level of performance that sits out of reach of other automatic options we’ve tried. Add solid build and neat finish into the equation and the F110 turntable becomes an easy-to-recommend option.”

Score: 5/5

Read our Rekkord Audio F110 review

Esoteric K-05XD

Esoteric K-05XD CD player

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We don’t see many premium SACD/CD players pass through our listening rooms at the moment, which is why the Esoteric K-05XD caused a bit of a stir within the What Hi-Fi? team. Thankfully, when paired with our reference Burmester 088/911 MkIII amplifier and ATC SCM50 speakers, the player delivered great results. Whether it was listening to the basic CD of George Michael’s Ladies & Gentlemen Disc 1 or an SACD of Stravinsky’s The Rite Of Spring, the player delivered excellent clarity and detail. This led our reviewers to report: 

“It is built beautifully and works with a slickness that most rivals simply can’t match. If you have a large collection of discs and want to hear the music recorded on them played back with integrity, we can’t think of a more desirable alternative at this level.“

Score: 5/5

Read our Esoteric K-05XD review

 Audio Pro C20 

Audio Pro C20 wireless speaker

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The Audio Pro C20 is a new one-box speaker that aims to dethrone the five star Naim Mu-so and Sonus Faber Omnia. Featuring wireless connectivity and a wealth of inputs for cabled set-ups it aims to offer a one stop solution for all your audio needs. During our checks, it impressed in spades, delivering a big detailed sound and pleasing build that will let it neatly slot into most lounges or home office set-ups – though be warned it’s slightly awkwardly sized to be used as a TV speaker. This led our reviewers to conclude: 

“The performance up for grabs here is so authoritative and so detailed, it offers a taste of hi-fi in wireless speaker form. If you have the budget, space and system to make use of the C20’s many capabilities, we struggle to think of another wireless speaker that comes close.”

Score: 5/5

Read our Audio Pro C20 review


LG C4 OLED TV photographed on a stand against a dark grey curtain

(Image credit: What Hi-Fi?)

The C4 is the step-down option in LG’s current line of OLED TVs, sitting below the more premium LG G4. While it doesn’t have the cutting edge, What Hi-Fi? Award-winning micro lens array screen tech seen on its more expensive sibling, our reviewers found plenty to like about the unit. The biggest improvements we saw, compared to its predecessor the LG C3, is significantly clearer and controlled sound quality. This, plus its brighter clearer picture and stellar gaming features, which include four HDMI 2.1 inputs, make it an easy recommendation. Our reviewers’ conclusion sums it up:

“This is the first 2024 mid-range OLED TV that we have tested, but it has laid the gauntlet for its rivals in dramatic fashion.”

Score: 5/5

Read our LG C4 review


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We detail the best wireless speakers

Our picks of the best record players revealed

Alastair Stevenson
Editor in Chief

Alastair is What Hi-Fi?’s editor in chief. He has well over a decade’s experience as a journalist working in both B2C and B2B press. During this time he’s covered everything from the launch of the first Amazon Echo to government cyber security policy. Prior to joining What Hi-Fi? he served as Trusted Reviews’ editor-in-chief. Outside of tech, he has a Masters from King’s College London in Ethics and the Philosophy of Religion, is an enthusiastic, but untalented, guitar player and runs a webcomic in his spare time.