What Hi-Fi? High-End Special Issue: Clearaudio and Aesthetix among “the very best hi-fi that money can buy”

The December issue of What Hi-Fi? magazine is dedicated to all things high-end, showcasing products that “may be expensive, but will last for years and provide countless hours of enjoyment.” Among the top picks are Clearaudio’s Innovation Wood turntable and Aesthetix’s Janus and Atlas Signature amplifiers. 

“As befits a product called Innovation, plenty of clever thinking has gone into this turntable,” write the magazine’s reviewers of the Clearaudio Innovation Wood, noting its patented ceramic magnetic main bearing designed to minimize friction, high-quality DC motor, optical speed control for superb speed stability and elegant chassis featuring a combination of aluminium and bullet-proof Panzerholz for superior damping.

Clearaudio Innovation Wood

Here, the innovation is partnered with Clearaudio’s “brilliantly engineered” Universal tonearm and DaVinci V2 phono cartridge to create “a world-class turntable package.”

Clearaudio Universal tonearm with DaVinci V2 cartridge

“There’s a feeling that it’s digging up every tiny bit of information from the record groove. All of which is skillfully organized and delivered with breathtaking composure. Yet, despite all the control and composure, this is a record player that knows how to have fun.” And one that earns a full five stars from What Hi-Fi?

Two further worthy recipients of a full five-star score are the Janus Signature preamplifier and Atlas Signature power amplifier from Aesthetix.

Amplifier combinations come “in all shapes, sizes and outputs,” note the magazine’s reviewers. “We’ve managed to hear many of the them over the years and in our view this immaculately constructed Aesthetix pre/power combo is one of the very best.”

Aesthetix Atlas and Janus amplifiers

The Janus Signature preamp uses a valve-based circuit and includes “a serious phono stage where most rivals have long since gone line-level only.” Meanwhile the 32kg Atlas Signature power amp’s 200W-per-channel output doubles as impedance halves to 4 ohms – “that’s enough to drive any speaker to seriously decent levels, even in a large room.”

“The Aesthetix sound is smooth and as refined as you like, even with less-than-perfect recordings. Yet both these components partner this civility with sledgehammer muscle when required. That combination of abilities is rare…. one of the stand-out combos at this price.”

Discover more drool-worthy high-end kit in the December 2017 issue of What Hi-Fi?

Aesthetix UK dealers

Find your nearest Clearaudio dealer from UK distributor Sound Fowndations