Hovland's tube amplifier (with the glass columns and machined rectilinear plinth) is a striking minimal sculpture. The fact that plays music, apparently pretty well(I've never actually heard it), makes it all the more appealing.
Bang and Olufsen: Most Beautiful
Jadis Horns: Most Outrageous
Manley Stingray: Most Unique (sounds great too)
There are some "drop dead gorgeous" tube amps out there, but being a solid state amp guy, I really like the Pass Labs X series amps. I don't think I can separate looks from performance-- the Pass amps have both. Cheers. Craig
That Jeff Rowland stuff ain't bad.
Oracle Delphi turntable, and the Oracle CD player
oracle delphi tt
Shanling CD player is quite cool looking. I always have and always will think Avalons are the bench mark from what other finishes are judged. Most tube amps with exposed tubes are good looking(to me) add a little wood and then you have something really special(ala Pathos, tenor). But I have to hand it to the big solid state guys, JRDG, Accuphase, and Levinson are all very welly built funcional pieces of art. I am sure there are more that I am forgetting but this is enough for now. ~Tim
I recently sold a Rowland 8TiHC and without a doubt, it was absolutely the most stunningly beautiful piece of equipment I've ever owned. That platinum faceplate sparkled like a diamond and even resulted in a non-audiophile friend saying she would like to own it for the sheer enjoyment of it's drop dead gorgeous looks.
Any Supratek Equipment, it's all stunning with the added benefit that it sounds fantastic!
Jeff Rowland, especially the EAD Ultradisk 2000 with the Jeff Rowland faceplate.
Clearaudio Reference and Master Reference turntables are pieces of art...Theta Dreadnaught looks good too
Not sure how anyone can pass up the all timer, McIntosh gear. The blue meters, a love or hate relationship!
I love em'!!
McIntosh MC2000 Millennium tube amplifier! Especially in the dark with the VUs switched off! And then the sound of it....!
I like Dolly Parton's components.
Not very musical, but the best L-OO-KING and the highest "drool factor" by far...
I agree with Aida_w. When you seat in the dark and in front of you a beautiful glowing blue VUs and all the tubes and the incredible sound of MC 2102 (little brother of MC2000) you would forget anything at that moment...!
Hands down, any of the jeff rowalnd products!!
Audiomeca Mephisto transport and it sounds the best
Linn LK sized components. They are minimalist prefection - when stacked on my self made semi-invisible rack they look like one of Donald Judd's untitled sculptures.
I also like the look of the new Clearaudio 'tables. Can you tell I love analog! For old school stuff, I vote for just about any Luxman component.
Rowland Concentra 2 and Avalon speakers
Avalon, except the Symbol. The Opus and the Eidolon, make me want to sell vital organs.:-)
Turntables embody the gestalt of the high end. Huge, high mass platters surrounded by finely scaled, delicately complex arms and wires reflect the juxtaposition of size, power, and dedication of brute physics with the refinement and sophistication of evolved, detailed engineering. I agree with the Oracle (with a Graham arm), a long time favorite, as well as the recent Clearaudios (with the Clearaudio straight line arm), especially the Master Reference. I would also add the von Spotheim La Luce (with her matched arm). Electronics may look good with their glow in the dark lights, but nothing beats a high end turntable with thick platter and spidery arm as a form dictated by function statement.
EAD has taken it to another level with their V-cut faces
Tube Gear - Graff (amps only) and Hovland
Solid State - Jeff Rowland
Source - Wadia 860/861, BOW Technologies
Speakers - Sonus Faber Amati Homage, Avalon Opus
To name a few since therre are so many....
Two that come to mind are the Transcriptors Saturn & Satelite turntables, and early Tandberg 2045 receivers with the Teak top & end panels.
If this digresses to the 'stick a finger down my throat' ugliest equipment, The Thorens AT403 and AT410 receivers take the cake. 15 years later, I still get sick thinking about how they looked. But lord, they sounded great & if anyone out there every sees one, give it a listen.
I want to add my vote for the JJ Electronics components. I just purchased the JJ 243 preamp, and it is stunning. The pictures don't do it justice. And it sounds pretty damn good too, which is always a plus.