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Our tests of the EISA Award 2019-2020 winners

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Since 2011, FWD has been voting in the election of the EISA Awards. We give our vote on the basis of tests that we carry out throughout the year. In this article you can read our conclusions about the winners tested – and immediately discover in depth why they deserved a prize.

Tests of the EISA Award winners

The EISA Awards are handed out every August. They almost seem to come from nowhere, but a lot of products are tested and approved beforehand. We tested most products in the first half of 2019, so that we could vote at EISA with full knowledge of the facts. Below you will find all (published) reviews of EISA winners. A number of tests will appear in the coming weeks, partly because embargoes apply to the publication of reviews. But the testing has already happened.

EISA BEST BUY OLED TV 2019-2020
Philips 55OLED804

For our image expert Eric Beeckmans, this new Philips OLED is “a must, without reservation”. He concluded that the shortcomings were modest and the plus points considerable. “The Philips 55OLED804 is a great successor to the top player from 2018. The Android chipset received a small upgrade, and is now a bit smoother, but we still liked it a little more powerfully. This is, after all, a premium TV. In the same respect, we would have liked a slightly more premium feeling with the remote. But the main drawback of last year has been eliminated: Philips now supports all major HDR formats, including HDR10 + and Dolby Vision. The new P5 image processing chip, together with the OLED panel, delivers enchanting images. Philips achieves the highest brightness and delivers excellent black detail. In addition, impressive accurate color reproduction is added, as does Sony and Panasonic. With Perfect Natural Reality, the Philips has an important asset that gives all your content a handsome HDR tint. Excellent sound quality, the latest Android TV version and Ambilight make this a fully equipped TV. The price is also very competitive. ”

You can read the full test of the Philips 55OLED804 here

EISA BEST BUY PROJECTOR 2019-2020
BenQ CinePrime W2700

A 4K projector that you can describe as a 'bargain', that was not possible last year. With the W2700, BenQ proves that the time is ripe for 2019. For a very reasonable price you can count on great performance, we concluded after an extensive test. “Excellent color reproduction and decent calibration (albeit a little less perfect than expected) ensure good images, which you will quickly suck into the story. The light output is sufficient for a screen of around 100 inches, even in ambient light. The contrast may have only slightly improved, but it is good enough for darkening. The best improvement is in the HDR display. That got a very good tuning, so that the projector creates very compelling HDR images despite its limitations. The more than decent audio and media player are great extras, and the good price is the icing on the cake. ”

You can read the full test of the BenQ CinePrime W2700 here

EISA BEST PREMIUM OLED TV 2019-2020
LG OLED65E9

By fully going for OLED technology, LG has gained a lot of success in the market. The OLED65E9 nicely illustrates why their televisions are so appreciated. The second generation Alpha 9 processor in particular raises image quality to an unprecedented high level. “With the OLED65C9PLA, LG is creating a very nice and good reference against which other OLED models will have to compete this year,” concludes Eric Beeckmans. “The stylish C9 series has more than just the looks. The image quality is excellent in both SDR and HDR. The particularly good calibration guarantees impressive images. The second-generation Alpha9 processor builds well on last year's performance, and delivers a number of small but handsome improvements: AI brightness enhances HDR display in a lot of ambient light, 'smooth gradations' efficiently removes most color bands, and dynamic tone mapping delivers clearer images . The basic performance is unchanged from last year, so LCD TVs continue to claim the brightness crown, but for contrast and black display OLED remains champion. ”

The full test of the LG OLED65C9PLA can be read here

EISA SMART HOME TV 2019-2020
LG 65SM9010

LG likes to put its OLED expertise in the spotlight, but that doesn't mean you can lose sight of the LCD models. Both image technology enjoy the same advantage with the Korean brand: the excellent WebOS smart TV system. It was this intuitive software and operation that gave the 65SM9010 an EISA Award. But the LCD device has other advantages, including in terms of brightness. “The screen provides a lot of brightness and can provide powerful HDR images. The color reproduction is good and the viewing angle is great. This television is equipped with HDMI 2.1 connections with a very large feature set. WebOS 4.5 is a fun and useful smart TV environment with extensive options. And finally, the device delivers powerful audio that will suffice for film and music for many viewers, ”was our conclusion.

You can read the full test of the LG 65SM9010PLA here

EISA UNIVERSAL PLAYER 2019-2020
Pioneer UDP-LX500

It is often said that thanks to Netflix and co-physical disks have no future. Maybe in the long run it will be right. Ultra HD Blu-rays still continue to offer the best image quality and there is also something to be said for music content on discs. The player plays an important role in terms of reproduction. This year there was clearly a device the best in this area: the UDP-LX500 from Pioneer. “The image and sound quality are excellent,” says our image expert. “The high-end character is reflected in an extremely robust and silent disc player that plays all your discs (and yes we also mean SACD and DVD Audio).” It might not be for everyone, but it is for the discerning user. “You get this Pioneer in the first place because you are looking for an audiophile all-round player. As a bonus, it is also an excellent Ultra HD Blu-ray player with support for Dolby Vision. ”

You can read the full test of the Pioneer UDP-LX500 here

EISA AV RECEIVER 2019-2020
Denon AVR- X2600H

 Denon AVR-X2600H

The AVR-X2600H is the successor to the successful AVR-X2500H from Denon. So an update, but a successful one that strongly strengthens the strong position of the brand in this. “ It is not that the Denon AVR-X2600H is a radically different device than its predecessor. It does come with a number of new (small) features that are interesting in certain situations, such as the Dolby Height Virtualization mode. We have to write 'will be', because a number of novelties still have to be added via a firmware upgrade. The many streaming options, the user-friendly interface, the good price / quality ratio and the many connection options make the Denon AVR-X2600H another reference to this price point. If you get the model with a DAB tuner, it is even quite right, “according to our test.

You can read the full test of the Denon AVR-X2600H here

EISA BEST BUY HOME THEATER SPEAKER SYSTEM 2019-2020
DALI OBERON Series

We were able to taste the combination of a good sound with a contemporary design with the DALI Oberon speakers. And EISA too. Not surprising, because for their price the Oberon speakers deliver rock-solid performance for surround and music. “With the Oberon speakers, Dali has a hit in two areas. In appearance, the speakers are clever enough that you can finally convince everyone in the family to accept a surround setup in the living room. But your money does not only go to the beautiful design, because the Oberon also creates a large surround field that feels very organic. The Oberons immerse you in movies, which is very pleasant and comfortable. ”

Read the full review of the Dali Oberon speakers here

EISA HOME THEATER SPEAKER SYSTEM 2019-2020
Arendal Sound 1723 Monitor S THX 5.1

Arendal is not really a big name when it comes to speakers, but this Norwegian company delivers fair quality for lovers of surround. We tested the 1723 S line with their more compact Monitor S models, which really pleased us. “The Arendals offer excellent value for what you pay.” They offer a very good quality and performance that matches the THX standards, and at reasonable prices. “The Arendal speakers are speakers for people who want to build a real home theater. People looking for a good price-quality ratio should also investigate the supply of the Norwegians. A condition is that you have room for larger speakers. Even the “compact” S versions are still quite substantial. The speakers are a bit too massive and too large for small living rooms. If you have the space to position them well, then the Arendals are very handsome speakers that will immediately appeal to the purists among the surround lovers. The build quality and finish is nothing short of excellent for the price, and the speakers are very thoughtfully designed. When it comes to the exterior, the gloss lacquer finish is particularly handsome. And you also notice that in the sound; dynamic jumps are effortlessly made and a wide, even surround field is created. Sometimes we missed some accurate placement of effects, so that the front channels in particular formed a large wall. That is a huge plus (= strong integration) and a weakness (less pronounced movement of effects) at the same time. It depends on your taste. The final report is very positive. ”

Read the test of the Arendal 1723 S-speakers here

EISA PREMIUM HOME THEATER RECEIVER 2019-2020
NAD T 758 V3

NAD modernizes with the V3 version the T 758 receiver in a spectacular way. The addition of Dirac, among other things, makes the excellent AV amplifier a truly affordable device that can offer top performance. An EISA Award-worthy. “Compared to an average 7.1 receiver, you pay a little more for the T 758 v3. However, the paper seems to be less able, while the receiver looks very sober in appearance. The interface is also not extremely exciting. But be careful: in real life this receiver is a lot more powerful than counterparts that cost half and that Dirac implementation bears a price. The NAD also sounds great when listening to music in stereo. That is why we think the T 758 v3 is not too high in price, but just a great choice for the home cinema enthusiast who wants to invest time in gaining a better surrounder experience. Roll up your sleeves and afterwards you stand listening with your mouth open. ”

Read the test of the NAD T 758 V3 here

EISA PREMIUM SOUNDBAR 2019-2020
Sennheiser AMBEO Soundbar

“Amazing”, that's how we would describe the AMBEO Bar by Sennheiser. It is very expensive for a soundbar, but you really get something for it. “The technology in the Ambeo Soundbar is nothing short of spectacular. You will be served real 3D sound. How good? That depends on the room, but in the best case it comes very close to a discreet surround arrangement of separate speakers. The realistic representation of the height channels is really astonishing. Because the Ambeo Soundbar is so good at creating a surround field, it also performs excellently as a stereo viewer for music. This is the new reference in the field of sound bars. ”

Read the test of the Sennheiser AMBEO Bar here

EISA TV SOUND SYSTEM 2019-2020
DALI KATCH ONE

The second EISA Award for DALI is for a very different product than the Oberon speakers. The KATCH One is a soundbar with a design like no other, and a sound that puts the music experience at the center. It offers something different from conventional sound bars, and that is sometimes allowed. “The elegant Scandinavian design of the Katch One is what really sets this device apart from the rest. And also that Dali first positions the Katch One as a music solution and only then as an improvement for your TV sound. The Dali succeeds particularly well in the first role. So good that it becomes interesting as a better sound solution for elsewhere in the house. For example, on a low cupboard in the dining room or on a shelf in the kitchen. As a soundbar, the Katch One delivers an open, clear sound that makes watching TV more pleasant. Musically, it surpasses many competitors. It does miss things that you actually expect at soundbars at this higher price point, such as extra HDMI inputs and WiFi streaming. Instead, the Katch One offers a simpler concept that mainly looks very handsome and sounds musical. ”

Read the test of the DALI KATCH One here

EISA ALL-IN-ONE SYSTEM 2019-2020
Naim Mu -so 2nd Generation

The Naim Mu-So 2 is an update for the acclaimed Mu-So. Initially there doesn't seem to be much else. The design has not changed that much. But the addition of an HDMI ARC input, new drivers and a new DSP hatch makes it no small upgrade – but a huge leap in terms of sound and possibilities. “The Mu-so Generation 2 has improved considerably compared to the previous Mu-so. The increased price tag might be less fun, in exchange you get a more detailed sound with a layer that is sufficiently fat to make the Naim speaker suitable for TV sound. With its price tag of 1,500 euros, the Mu-so Generation 2 does come to the field of good discrete stereo solutions – but then again they are very different, less compact systems. Thanks to the HDMI input, the Mu-so 2 is a fully-fledged alternative to a soundbar. If you only want to use it for that, it might make less sense. For the same price you can purchase a premium soundbar that offers Dolby Atmos surround sound. However, the Mu-so Generation 2 has a more luxurious finish and is much better suited to music than most sound bars. ”

Read the test of the Naim Audio Mu-So 2

EISA BOOKSHELF LOUDSPEAKER 2019-2020
Monitor Audio Gold 100

The Gold family of Monitor Audio is now in its sixth generation. The new versions look very different and offer a more connected sound that was very much appreciated by the EISA jury. “The Gold 100 is a talented speaker with a full deep sound that you would not expect from a speaker that is not a floorstander. Muting the bass port on the back may be recommended depending on your taste. But we are particularly impressed by its detailed, fast high, which gives this Monitor Audio 100 even more beautiful audioophile credentials than its predecessor. ”

Read here the test of the Monitor Audio Gold 100

EISA COMPACT STEREO SYSTEM 2019-2020
Marantz Melody-X (M-CR612)

We found the elegant Melody X something very fascinating. Small yet fairly powerful and with excellent streaming options. Add your own speakers and you can listen to your music. In high quality, we found: “It is a high-quality music system that easily finds a place in your living room and has many qualities of a larger hi-fi device. Its versatility is a huge asset: with countless streaming options and the CD player, you can listen to music in many ways, and you can use it as a great solution for your TV sound. ”

Read the Marantz test here Melody X

EISA SMART AMPLIFIER 2019-2020
NAD M10

What is a smart amplifier? It may seem like a special name, but if you take a closer look at the M10 from NAD, you'll understand. It is not an amplifier for the usual hi-fi enthusiast who loves large components that he combines to his heart's content. The M10 is just very compact and full of interesting functions. Very successful and for a certain audience. “The NAD M10 is an excellent amplifier that replaces an entire music system – and does not compromise. Perfect is a fierce word to use, but NAD has created a hi-fi device here that barely makes a mistake and will approach perfection for many people. And that in something of a large handkerchief. ”

Read here the text of the NAD M10

EISA WIRELESS STEREO SPEAKER 2019-2020
KEF LSX

After the LS50 Wireless started running with an EISA Award, it was perhaps inevitable that the LSX from KEF would also be awarded. After all, it offers much of the same sound quality and ease of use, with a more compact design that is even more room-friendly. “With the LSX, KEF has hit the nail on the head and possibly even hit a gap in the market. Stylish, compact speakers that you can place anywhere in your house, with which you can play all your favorite music and of which you can expect a high-quality hi-fi sound. The LSX is a user-friendly system, with finishing options that fit perfectly in almost any interior and an equalizer function that allows you to adjust the audio reproduction to any room (and taste). In addition to access to the most important streaming services and your own media, you will soon also be able to get started with multiroom capabilities thanks to AirPlay 2. KEF has managed to achieve the most important functions and an important part of the performance of the LS50W in an even more compact and accessible system. building, and that makes the LSX in its affordable price range the 'all-in-one hi-fi system' to beat.

Read the test of the KEF LSX here

EISA STREAMING DAC 2019-2020
Mytek Brooklyn Bridge

“The Brooklyn Bridge is an unusual hi-fi device – and that makes it just interesting for certain music lovers. For example for people who want to listen to their midrange and high-end headphones in high quality. And that without much hassle with cables and multiple devices. That's how you make head-fi room-friendly, we think. ”A combination of possibilities that we could really taste, which explains both our approval and that of EISA.

Read the test of the Brooklyn Bridge of Mytek here

EISA HEADPHONE 2019-2020
Focal Elegia

After the fantastic Elear, Utopia and Clear – all open headphones – Focal is aiming arrows at lovers of closed designs. Successfully, EISA found. We also: “The Elegia is a headset that you must give time to appreciate. He does not try to outwit you with a false sense of detail or subsonic bass, but he does play music in an honest way. ”

Read the test of the Focal Elegia here

EISA ADVANCED SMARTPHONE 2019-2020
OnePlus 7 Pro

“Not perfect, but fantastic”, concluded our smartphone expert Wesley Akkerman in his comprehensive review of the OnePlus 7 Pro. “The slogan” Never Settle “is still very important for OnePlus. It is also a common thread in everything the company does and that is clear more than ever when you look at the OnePlus 7 Pro. Many improvements have been made in all areas. Improvements that we can expect (such as better specifications) and adjustments that have been implemented for the first time in the company's devices, such as that screen with that higher refresh rate, the extendable camera, stereo speakers and better vibrating motor. ”

Read here the test of the OnePlus 7 Pro

EISA BEST NOISE-CANCELLING HEADPHONES 2019-2020
Sony WH-1000XM3

To be better than Bose, that was the ambition of Sony with the WH-1000XM3. The EISA jury thought a tough goal, but it was successful. Just like us, who were very enthusiastic about the high-end NC headphones. “They can celebrate at Sony: the goal of being among the best on the market has been achieved. In exchange for the larger investment you receive with the WH-1000XM3 a market-leading noise-canceling headset that is chock full of useful and less useful options. ”

Read the test of the Sony WH-1000XM3

EISA BEST SMARTPHONE 2019-2020 (combined with Photography EG)
Huawei P30 Pro

“It is undeniable that Huawei offers the best camera smartphone of the moment with the Huawei P30 Pro,” says expert Akkerman. “The unparalleled optical zoom options and other camera functions are improved compared to the P20 Pro and you don't actually find them on other smartphones. In addition, it is very nice that a large battery is present and that it can also be charged quickly. The other specifications further ensure that you are assured of a fast and pleasant smartphone experience. ”There are disadvantages, but it was clear to us and EISA:“ Are you now looking for a smartphone that takes the best snapshots? Then the Huawei P30 Pro is the device that you can purchase now. ”

Read the test of the Huawei P30 Pro

here

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