This needn't mean high-brow classical. Electronica like Kalya Scintilla's remix of Desert Dwellers' "Lotus Heart" are fair game. Just because Hylixa is mega stylish doesn't imply that you couldn't turn your London penthouse with the dear views over the Thames into a private club. Whilst going loud and low will hit eventual limits, Node's gleaming ovals won't disappoint in a domestic system that hosts some neighbor-cleared fun with trance dub on didgeridoo. Hylixa proved fully equal to the task. Particularly its astonishing prowess at sorting out artificial multi-tracked soundscapes added greatly to my enjoyment. Bass slam and growl were unexpectedly heavy hitters too.

If non-traditional symphonic forces are desired, this challenging opener from Juan Carmona's extraordinary Sinfonia Flamenca will test any system's abilities to not confuse intricate timing. In this discipline which here gets taxing on any hardware, Hylixa's snappiness wasn't as dialed up as for example the just-departed Børresen 02 had managed. To milk this quality would have wanted our fastest amps. Those I'd already tried. On balance, I found the Venetian CanEver overall best. By virtue of its summed front/back bass, Hylixa won't ever be as sharp-edged ultra damped as other designs which prioritize that aspect. The most impressive balancing act which the glossy Brits pulled off here was of low-end mass and tonal blackness on one hand; and that very insightful clearly defined spark of life in the upper mid/lower treble range on the other. That really lit up those arpeggio zingers of the guitar.

For a celebration of fat-toned slide guitar…

… I cued up Debashish Bhattacharya's Joy!Guru with "Here comes the Moon King". If you haven't heard this man's extraordinary instruments and his mastery over them, this could be a good intro. Hawaii meets India by way of Blues funk. Like a sitar's sympathetic strings, glassier glitter overlays the profound sonority of the horizontal wooden carcass. Getting both plus the Bluesy twang Debashish throws in, simultaneously, tracks sophisticated tone modulations. In that discipline, the petite BMR driver proved fantastic.

For some saucy female Pop vocals Greek style, I went for Natasa Theodoridou's Pote Den Efiga Apo 'Do album and its title track. No speaker can undo recorded dynamic compression if the producers wanted everything—well, most everything—equally loud. Alas, that reality bites much of our music. Our systems best deal with it then. The more separation they can muster, the more they can offset those gelatinous wall-of-sound tendencies which want to clump up laterally and in the depth domain. This was another high point for Node's compact point-source concept whose entire bandwidth radiates off a small curved disc. Separation approached being as good as this type material allows for.

For some vocals recorded with the kind of care Node's designers applied to Hylixa, I reached for two domestic favorites, one male, one female.