As loudspeaker stands go, the Custom Design RS302 has a simple enough design. Two medium-diameter pillars provide the support between a rectangular steel base and a small top plate.

The top plate is unusual, though, in that it's not solid metal, but rather Custom Design's 'Acoustic Steel' - two pieces of steel sheet bonded together with a slightly soft adhesive so as to form a whole that is unusually non-resonant.

Good value stand

Just about the only disadvantage of this and it's certainly very minor, is that it's not possible to put threaded holes in the top and the supplied speaker-mounting spikes must be fitted with two nuts, which is a slightly fiddly process. The floor spikes mount and lock in the usual way.

The price does not include any filler for the pillars, which should be considered essential: CD's 'Inert' filler will add £32 to the price, but sand is much cheaper and does most of the work, if a little messy.

Suitably filled, then, the stands gave our various loudspeakers a well-defined sound with plenty of detail and just slightly loose bass. There is no particular sense of coloration in the sound, indeed midrange and treble seem as neutral as we've heard from the respective speakers, but in the lowest couple of octaves there is some occasional insecurity.

This is probably due to very minor rocking of the assembly, which is pretty rigid, but not quite up to the standards of some rivals. All the same, the stand is very practical, performs well and comes in at a good price.