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Best of the Week: Apple HomePod reviewed, Winter Olympics in 8K HDR, Spotify update and more

This week, McIntosh announced a monobloc amp in the MC611, Dynaudio rebooted its active speaker range with the Xeo 20 and 30 speakers and Spotify announced that a number of older hi-fi products will lose Spotify Connect support in a forthcoming update.

Elsewhere, we had reviews of Apple's HomePod smart speaker, Audio Pro's Addon C10 wireless speaker and Master and Dynamic's MW50 wireless headphone.

It's also new What Hi-Fi? week with the March issue now on sale. In it you can find features on high-resolution music as well as the latest news and reviews of home cinema and hi-fi kit.

MORE: Win a Cyrus One amplifier, Chromecast Audio dongle and Tidal subscription!

MORE: March 2018 issue on sale now!


McIntosh launches £20,000 MC611 power amplifier

McIntosh has replaced its MC601 amplifier with the MC611.

The MC611 delivers 600W of power, has double the filter capacity of its predecessor (for a cleaner bass sound) and monogrammed heatsinks to manage its temperature.

It's available in March and you can pre-order now for £19,995 a pair.

MORE: McIntosh launches £20,000 MC611 power amplifier

Dynaudio reboots speaker range with Xeo 20 and Xeo 30

Dynaudio has revamped its active speaker range with the announcement of the Xeo 20 and Xeo 30.

They replace the Xeo 4 and Xeo 6 speakers, each speaker having undergone improvements, including improved bass and changes to the speakers suite of connections.

The Xeo 20 starts at £1999 per pair and the Xeo 30 at £3199 per pair.

MORE: Dynaudio reboots speaker range with Xeo 20 and Xeo 30

Spotify kills integration for some older hi-fi and AV kit

Spotify users with old hi-fi kit could be affected by the company's upcoming software changes.

The streaming service is set to update its platform, but as a result products of a certain age will no longer work with Spotify Connect.

In some cases, Spotify says manufacturers can update their firmware to be compatible. Check here to see if your product is affected.

MORE: Spotify kills integration for some older hi-fi and AV kit

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Apple HomePod

Let's get straight to it. The HomePod is the best sounding smart speaker around.

That's thanks to its weighty, authoritative sound, expertly judged treble and impressive bass and punch.

There are limitations. You'll need Apple Music to get the best out of it and there's no multi-room functionality yet. For Apple users at least, the HomePod delivers on its promise.

Read the full Apple HomePod review

Audio Pro Addon C10

Audio Pro can do no wrong with its wireless speakers, with another belter in the C10.

It has an expert sense of timing and dynamics, a presentation more spacious than its rivals and packs in multi-room functionality to boot. We can't find a flaw with it.

The C10 is another class-leading speaker from the Scandinavian company.

Read the full Audio Pro Addon C10 review

Master & Dynamic MW50

Master & Dynamic consider their high-end MW50s to be less headphones and more a 'sound tool'.

Who knows what that term actually means, but the MW50s do at least deliver a punchy and detailed sound, with good sense of organisation.

It's not so strong in terms of timing and dynamics and that price tag is a hindrance. Worth a look though.

Read the full Master & Dynamic MW50 review

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Kob began his career at What Hi-Fi?, starting in the dusty stockroom before rising up the ranks to join the editorial and production team as the Buyer’s Guide editor. Experienced in both magazine and online publishing, he now runs the TV & audio section at Trusted Reviews where he keeps a beady eye on all the latest comings and goings in the hi-fi and home cinema market.