Top 10 hi-fi speakers

4 ATC SCM19 (£1,500)

Like PMC, the ATC SCM19 has a pro heritage and has been screwed together with a whole lot of hi-fi know-how. It contains one of ATC's legendary drive units and a plethora of high-class engineering all squeezed into one of the finest boxes around. But be warned: this is a warts-and-all speaker that won't gloss over the sound. However, for many people, it will be the closest they can get to those precious studio master tapes. Key specs: Type: Standmount; Dimensions: 22 x 44 x 31.4; Sensitivity: 85dB (claimed)

3 Bowers and Wilkins 802D (£8,000)

It deserves to be number one, yet only a lucky few can afford it. Still, this is probably the best speaker money can buy, without entering the loony high end. B&W's 802D (D for diamond tweeter) is an engineering tour de force and the benchmark for high-end speakers to aspire to. At 80kg each (that's more than this writer) these colossal masterpieces deliver music with a realism and authority like nothing else. Beautiful and technically brilliant. Key specs: Type: Floorstander; Dimensions: 27 x 115 x 56; Sensitivity: 85dB (claimed)

2 Dali Ikon 7 (£1,000)

This Ikonic speaker is different from the pack because it uses a hybrid tweeter that combines a conventional treble unit with a ribbon. It gives the Ikon 7 an edge over its sub-£1,000 rivals delivering an incredible level of transparency, which makes it incredibly coherent with both vocals and music. Best of all, it reminds us of Dali's expensive Helicon 400 speaker, which is considerably more expensive at £3,000. Key specs: Type: Floorstander; Dimensions: 20 x 114 x 34; Sensitivity: 92dB (claimed)

1 Epos M12.2 (£450)

At £450, the standmount M12.2 is one of hi-fi's biggest bargains. It's incredible command of the midband is to-die-for and although some corners criticize it for being a little bass-shy, nothing comes close to its magical ways with acoustic music. It's fast, communicative and is hauntingly good with vocals and instrumentation. If deep bass is important to you, Epos can also supply its M Sub subwoofer (£650) that takes the M12.2 to a whole new level. Key specs: Type: Standmount; Dimensions: 20 x 37 x 25; Sensitivity: 87dB (claimed)