This Cambridge Audio setup is a modern take on the classic hi-fi system of a matching CD player and amp – except that in place of a CD player, there’s a streamer.
add the Azur 651 amp and BT100 Bluetooth receiver
The Cambridge Audio system means you get two boxes – the £700 Stream Magic 6 and the £450 Azur 651 amp – rather than one, but they’re sleekly designed and will look the part stacked on any shelf.
Plug in the optional BT100 Bluetooth receiver (£70) and you can stream from your smartphone, iPhone, iPad or computer. It supports high-spec aptX quality, too.
wireless and streaming
They’re also among the best-equipped, capable of accepting music via every popular means of wired and wireless transmission other than AirPlay. You even get access to Aupeo!, and while it’s no Spotify, that means you needn’t have a big catalogue of pre-ripped content to get up and running.
high-res music file support
The Cambridge Audio streamer has three USB inputs of which one (on the rear) is a Type B socket – which means it supports 24-bit/192kHz high-res music files.
iOS and Android apps
Cambridge Audio offers a free Stream Magic control app for iOS and Android. It looks slick and displays the quality of each track as they play, but it is slow to scroll through.
Sound-wise, it’s got Wolfson DACs and 24-bit/384kHz ATF2 upsampling tech, which may sound like gibberish, but ensures it has the performance to match its flexibility. The amp, meanwhile, is a muscular, occasionally boisterous 75W affair, which serves up serious detail, especially with 24-bit/192kHz files.
The only minor niggle is that it won’t handle Apple Lossless, but a recent firmware upgrade added support for gapless playback, and we’ve heard Lossless is on the way. That aside, there’s really very little to fault the Cambridge streamer on – hence why it’s our preference over stiff competition from the likes of the NaimUniti 2.