Organizing audio gear into the most basic categories—like nutrition, where whisky and steak comprise the two essential food groups—counting the fingers on both hands would assemble a system or three that covers all the bases and fills most every musical need. With that, for 2019 we’ve selected 10 pieces of great gear that represent best-in-class engineering, performance and value within their respective categories. Each is a keeper—great today and good for the long haul. But unlike scotch and cuts of beef, where personal preference often elicits vociferous debate, we’d say it’s hard for any music lover to argue the merits of any of the following selections.
By Robert Ross