When researching the best high-performance audio components, certain performance specifications can give you an indication of a specific product’s characteristics, but do they tell you everything? Full-range speakers with low distortion, and amplifiers with a lot of headroom are relevant parameters, but the proof is in the listening. What are the dimensions of your listening room? Is the room dedicated to music, or is the system going to be installed in a room used for other functions? What are your aesthetic concerns? After all, we may critically look at the gear as much as we critically listen to it. So, looks can and do count. But above all, what experience from our budding system do we seek?