WHAT HIFI? Award Winners 2018

Great to see the products we rate so highly are getting the recognition they deserve in this year’s WHAT HIFI? Awards.

There’s some perennial winners in there – with some retaining their best in class status 4 years running! Rega predictably dominated the best turntable category.

Our personal favourites include: the awesome Naim Uniti Atom; Chord Electronic’s Hugo 2 DAC ( which includes a free Chord Clearway interconnect until Nov 1st! ), and Rega’s entry-level Planar 1 turntable.

Check the full list of our winners below:

Turntables ★★★★★

Rega Planar 1
Best Turntable £200 – £500

The new Planar 1 is the most user friendly Rega turntable to date. Now with preset bias force on the brand new RB110 tonearm, the Planar 1 is set up in seconds after unpacking. Simply slide the balance weight onto the rear of the tonearm as far as it will go, remove the stylus guard and start spinning your favourite vinyl.

Rega Planar 3/Elys 2
Best Turntable £500 – £1000

Replacing the multi award winning and five times What Hi-Fi? Product of the Year (RP3) was never going to be an easy task. It took Rega’s team of designers, headed up by Roy Gandy, two years to develop the all new Planar 3 following the biggest re-design of the iconic Three model ever seen.

Rega Planar 6/Ania
Best Turntable over £1000

The Planar 6 has one goal, to reproduce your vinyl as accurately as possible. Rega have engineered every aspect of this turntable to extract as much detail from the vinyl surface as possible. Advanced materials and engineering solutions have been used throughout the design to ensure the greatest level of performance. 

Systems ★★★★★

KEF LS50 Wireless
Best all-in-one system

Inspired by the legendary LS3/5A, LS50 passive speakers were introduced to the world at KEF’s 50th anniversary. Expertly delivering a rich, multi-dimensional ‘soundstage experience’, audiences immediately warmed to the LS50, creating a huge buzz when launched and excited at bringing the professional studio monitor concept into the home.

Naim Uniti Atom
Best Hi-Fi System over £1000

Uniti Atom is a beautiful, compact multi-source music player that will seduce you with its amazing sound quality and outstanding feature-set. Its 40-watt integrated amplifier and high-resolution music streaming capabilities will fill your home with stunning high-fidelity sound.

Accessories ★★★★★

Rega Fono MM MK3
Best Phono stage under £250

The new Fono MM phono stage has been designed to be effective, easy to use, and above all, to reproduce music. The Fono MM uses a fully discrete, cascaded, complementary amplifier input stage, a configuration designed to optimise the performance of your moving magnet cartridge.

Chord Company C-line
Best analogue interconnect under £50

An original Chord Company design, high performance cable at an affordable price that still adheres to their exacting standards. What Hi-Fi? Award-winner 2015, 2016, 2017 & 2018!

Chord Clearway Analogue RCA
Best Analogue interconnect over £50

Chord have taken the design from the award winning C-line and upgraded all the materials to produce an outstanding value for money, high-performance analogue interconnect.

Atacama Moseco 6
Best speaker stands

Moseco speaker stands combine all the aesthetic and sonic Benefits of Bamboo with the adaptability, strength and stability of twin carbon steel poles. These poles consist of a 50mm front column and a 28mm rear column which features cable management.

Stereo Amplifiers ★★★★★

Rega Brio
Best Stereo amplifier £400-£700

The Brio has a completely new case to house its improved circuits and parts. It now sits in a fully aluminium two-part case which boosts the Brio’s heat sinking capabilities and improves on Rega’s already solid build quality and reliability. 

Rega Elex-R
Best stereo amplifier £700-£1500

The Elex-R is a sublime blend of the Brio-R design with the power circuits and advanced phono stage of the Elicit-R. Rega’s engineers have achieved the perfect balance of power,control and dynamics, delivering a performance that always puts the music first.

Multi-Room Systems ★★★★★

Sonos
Best multi-room system over £1000

Speaker Packages ★★★★★

PMC Twenty5 23 5.1
Best speaker package over £5000

DACs ★★★★★

Cyrus SoundKey
Best DAC under £150

SoundKey is an award-winning revolution in mobile music. Hi-Fi streaming services like TIDAL mean fantastic quality is available to subscribers, but phones lack the necessary hardware to get the best from this data. SoundKey unlocks that data, using our years of expertise in high-resolution DAC and amplifier design. Cyrus quality audio is now available to everyone.

AudioQuest DragonFly Red
Best DAC £150 – £300

AudioQuest and DragonFly designer Gordon Rankin worked alongside Microchip Technology to develop a new high-performance, full-speed USB microcontroller solution that delivers improved signal-to-noise ratio and significantly lower power consumption.

Chord Mojo
Best DAC £300 – £500

Welcome Mojo, the world’s most advanced portable digital to analogue converter DAC/Headphone amplifier. Thanks to technology derived from the Hugo series units and Dave reference converter, the little powerhouse, that’s just the size of a pack of playing cards, will not only make your music sound better, but will effortlessly drive any pair of headphones wherever you are, no matter what.

Chord Qutest
Best DAC £500 – £1200

Qutest is a standalone DAC whose performance belies its compact dimensions. With DAC architecture based on the award-winning Hugo 2, Qutest offers class-leading digital conversio

Chord Hugo 2
Best DAC over £1200

Hugo 2 is a powerful DAC and headphone amp that builds on the ground-breaking original. Designed for both home and mobile use, Hugo 2 transforms headphones and audio systems sound quality with its cutting-edge proprietary DAC technology.

Soundsbars & Soundbases ★★★★★

Sonos Beam
Best Soundbar £300 – £500

  • The smart, compact soundbar for your TV.
  • Plays music, TV, movies, and more 
  • Clear dialogue from speech enhancement
  • Easily pairs with your TV & remote
  • Amazon Alexa voice control
  • AirPlay compatible with iOS devices
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