Best of the Best 2013: Electronics: Digital Audio: Burmester 111 Musiccenter

The $49,995 Burmester 111 Musiccenter (+49.30.787.9680, www.burmester.de) is a music server—a system that offers playback of any digital music file—as well as a preamplifier with a built-in reference-grade digital-to-analog converter. The 111 features three analog audio inputs and nine digital ones; a 3-terabyte onboard hard drive (plus another 3-terabyte backup drive); a CD loading slot; an Ethernet input plus four rear-panel USB inputs; and two antennae for wireless playback. The unit ships with a third-generation iPad loaded with Burmester’s proprietary control app, giving users an intuitive touchscreen remote with which to browse their music collections. Hi-fi digital playback has never been easier.