Cambridge Audio is a British brand I have regarded with affection since my student days. It has always been a torchbearer for decent, good-looking hifi at tolerable prices, with a touch of excitement about it. It was often the first good stereo kit a 1970s twentysomething got their hands on. Now a middle England favourite like Richer Sounds, it’s still admirable. The name suggests a touch of boffin, but it’s apt as the brand was founded in Cambridge.
This is from its new YoYo range. I chose it because it’s a two-speaker portable that can play for 24 hours on a battery charge. So you could put it in a spot without a mains point in a garden, feed it by Bluetooth and have great-quality, properly separated stereo belted out at a good volume for a few hours, several days on the trot. There’s a good-size driver and a subwoofer in each 8in tall, 1.5kg box. Oddly, there’s no claim made for the power of the amps, but it is massively loud.
The YoYo (M) is a conservative design, conservatively executed and its fairly modest price is reflected in details – like the woefully sketchy instruction sheet. I couldn’t make out what it was saying, but got by with guesswork. I should say I loved the sound: again, it’s honest, untampered-with and startlingly good sometimes. Streaming Rod Stewart’s Every Picture Tells A Story from Tidal was like being a student again, but with even better sound than a 1970s Cambridge system.