The last of four posts showcasing highlights from US-based hi-fi magazine The Absolute Sound’s prestigious Editors’ Choice Awards for 2017, this time featuring those all-important hi-fi accessories.
From cables and connectors to racks and record cleaning machines, Editor-in-Chief Robert Harley and his team ‘rack up’ their top product recommendations from across the world of audio. Whatever your need or problem, there’s an award-winning accessory that can sort it out.
Dirty vinyl? Clearaudio’s Double Matrix Professional Sonic will soon clean it up. It “retains all the convenience of the Double Matrix (simultaneous cleaning of both sides of a record) while adding ultra-sonic scrubbing to the original brush-and-fluid method. Built like a tank and easy to use, this is a high-quality record cleaner.”
Dirty power? Plug in IsoTek’s EVO3 Sigmas power conditioner. “Pretty much guaranteed to banish any lingering hum issues you may be experiencing… The improvement in sound quality via the Sigmas is immediately audible. It lowers noise floor, improves transient response, and provides blacker backgrounds.”
Looking to set up some high-end kit? “Clearaudio’s Stroboscope and Speed Light are great tools for the serious vinyl junkie… Featuring grooves that create the additional stylus drag necessary to accurately measure your turntable’s speed – while at the same time doubling as a cartridge break-in device.”
Once set up, you’ll need to keep everything in tip-top condition. The Aesthetix ABCD-1MC Cartridge Demagnetizer “sends a special signal through your moving-coil cartridge, removing stray magnetism in the coils. Used every two weeks or so, the ABCD-1 will restore tone colors and soundstage clarity.”
Looking to organize your vinyl collection in a way that’s both functional and elegant? “Made of heavy-duty yet smooth multi-ply high-grade European birch,” Kate Koeppel Design record and CD racks and dividers are “all handcrafted by California artisans… arrange as you please: alphabetically, by genre, by label, etc. Koeppel can also design and create custom storage solutions to meet your needs.”
Finally, if your need is simply for superlative quality cables, “Furutech’s cables have great transparency and purity, plus an uncanny ability to block out noise.” “Furutech uses cryogenically treated, ultra-high-purity, OCC (Ohno Continuous Casting) single-crystal copper conductors in both its mid-priced Evolution and premium-priced Reference III audio cables.” Both are award-winners, as is the brand’s Flux cable series. “The Futurech Flux cables land on the speedy side of sound delivery. They are extremely transparent and detailed… The quality of workmanship, as with all Furutech products, is stunning. The connectors are a pleasure to handle and use.” “The phono cable… ranks among the best ever produced.”
To early for a Christmas list? Not to worry, I have a birthday coming up.
For full details of The Absolute Sound’s 2017 Editors’ Choice Awards, grab a copy of the March issue.
To audition any of the award-winning products above, find your nearest dealer at:
Sound Fowndations for Clearaudio, Furutech, IsoTek and Kate Koeppel Design