Whether it's supreme-sounding vinyl, worry-free wireless streaming or the ultimate in home-cinema set-ups, the latest issue of What Hi-Fi? – on the newsstands today – will have you beating the system.
Building a hi-fi system is all about gathering together the right kit – kit that'll get the sonic best out of whatever it is partnered with. That's where our expert advice comes in.
We've hooked up eight awesome music and movie set-ups, so whether your budget extends to £265 or £10,000 (get you!) there's a perfect system for you.
We want you to have the best possible hi-fi set-up for your budget and needs. Because (say it with us now) life is too short to listen to poor-quality music.
Testing times ahead
Our in-depth First Tests section this month features a second-generation, do-it-all, multi-room-compatible speaker from Naim, the Technics SL-1500C turntable, Bluetooth buds including Cambridge Audio's Melomania and Beats' Powerbeats Pro, Elac's Debut 2.0 F5.2 floorstander speakers, plus one of the best soundbars we've ever tested, the Sennheiser Ambeo.
First Tests always give you the nitty-gritty – the director's cut of reviews – because we think you deserve to know what's what. Read our First Tests and you'll know whether the product is right for you.
Amping it up
Your amplifier is the beating heart of your system, and you need to keep that ticker in check. That doesn't mean you have to drop a huge amount of cash on it though – the seven amps we've tested for you this month all sit within a three-figure budget.
It's not simply about putting our most-recommended amplifier for your budget into your online cart and hitting 'check out' – partnering amps is a delicate matter. Featured here are two Award-winners from Rega, a new entry from Cambridge Audio, Marantz's PM6006 UK Edition, plus Audiolab, Musical Fidelity and NAD contenders.
These are five-star amps across the board, which is why we'll give you detailed information on what works best with what. All that's left for you to do is pick your own top ticker.
You down with PMP? (Yeah you know me)
MP3 players? So 2004. Portable music players (PMPs) in 2019 are all about hi-res audio playback on the go.
The four PMPs we've corralled together for this issue, including models from Sony, Astell & Kern, Apple and Cowon, range from £180 to £550 and all are five-star performers.
We're sure there's a player here for you, should you need a new companion to make your journey feel far less long and lonely.
Our Insider section sees us delving into the past to bring about a brighter future with Thomas Steffens, CEO of classical music streaming service Primephonic. He talks about his plans for meeting the genre's needs in a way that Spotify's current model can't truly satisfy, and about how music that's 200 to 300 years old requires special handling – including a different payout model.
We've also gone behind the scenes at Sky Q to see how Sky engineers broadcast the Isle of Wight music festival live in Dolby Atmos, talking highly specific mic set-ups and real-time sound mixing.
We can resist anything except temptation...
Our Temptations section is all about aspirational products, and this month we're featuring the Naim NDX 2 music streamer and PMC's Result6 active stereo speakers. If you're thinking of spending this much, you'll want to know you're getting your money's worth.
On top of all this, our Insider Top Five Launches includes Sony's newest truly wireless noise-cancelling headphones, the WF-1000XM3, and the world's first portable Bluetooth cassette player. Yes, you read that correctly: Bluetooth cassette player.
Of course, we've also updated and included our definitive guide to the best home entertainment your money can buy, our unparalleled Buyer's Guide.