If you're going to take the time to listen to classical music, you might as well do it right, and there doesn't seem to be much of a better way than with Fortuna's new Maestro Classical Music Player. The unit is basically a Hush fanless PC running an iTunes-like interface which can be displayed on your TV or computer monitor via DVI, VGA or Component outputs. The interface is specially designed to sort through your collection by composer, conductor, artist, ensemble, genre and period, and also has jazz and pop modes for when you're not feeling in a classical mood. The system can rip your CDs into lossless WMA or lossy MP3 files onto its 400GB HDD, and syncs to Fortuna servers for digital booklets and other album information as long as you pay $10 a month for the privilege. Of course, it all comes down to the audio output, and the Maestro doesn't disappoint with analog, S/PDIF coax and S/PDIF optical outs. Sadly, none of this comes cheap, this glorified CD player goes for a whopping $5000, but at least that includes professional preloading of your music collection, and the peace of mind in knowing that yes, you are an audio snob.

[Thanks, Ross]

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