Tracks to test/show off your system

I listen to this to really exercise my system. The bass is thunderous and the effects display the imaging capabilities of my system. It is a great track to show off your system!

Please share music that you feel does the same.


Almost any track - but Boadicea if I have to pick one.


Thanks! I have to check that one out.

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I think you will likely recognise it… :thinking:

Not by the Fugees…

I tend to let someone choose something they want to listen to from my collection. Mostly because most sensible people don’t give a flying figleaf about hi-fi, being more interested in hearing a song/album they like. For me, the main thing is they enjoy hearing something they know rather than showing off my system, which I think is a much better way to demonstrate hi-fi than choosing something that shows off a system. If I have a friend around who shares my weirdness and tendency to spend vast sums on hi-fi, I still let them choose something they know, realising they could be listening with more of a focus on the system. Playing a piece of music unknown to the person on an unknown system doesn’t really help in my experience as there is no reference to how it sounded before on a known system.

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This gets the juices on a nice simmer.


On the topic of Enya, Watermark contains some great sub-bass - try track 10 for the best examples.

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Love it DanielH. Please can you direct me to where I can purchase as I’m having trouble finding it?

Sorry, I don’t know where it can be purchased. I stream it on Tidal.

Edit: I see it is on sale on

Anything shouty by PJ Harvey. Almost unlistenable on a poor system.

Layers of bliss on a good setup.


Similarly any early Cocteau Twins, with so much treble energy.
On a lesser system this just sounds harsh and messy.

On a top flight system it’s crispy, sparkly and makes everything sound so fresh.


When a Blindman Cries (Deep Purple), The witch (Lab4), Mugumba State (Shpongle) and to test the “at the front of a live concert” feel, Ringer by Godflesh.

Oh yes, plus the other usual jazz, Krall, Brubeck type showcase stuff

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I usually slap a few fave albums on the LP12 after any kind of upgrade:

Best for being well-mixed and produced
First 2 B52 albums
Rip it Up - Orange Juice
Flag - Yello
Boat to Bolivia - Daintees

Best for challenging mixes
Stories from the city, stories from the sea - PJ Harvey
New Gold Dream - Simple Minds
Forever Now - Psychedelic Furs
Ultra - Depeche Mode (well-produced but bass and drums can be overwhelming)

Ah, yes, a good challenging mix. The last two tracks from the 1996 Mission: Impossible film (Zoom A and Zoom B) are my ones of choice. I once saw them referred to as ‘system torture tracks’!

I recently discovered Guijara by Santana. It is a great song and really shines on the audio system!

I recently discovered this on Tidal. It is “Silence” (original mix) by Vargo. It has a really nice atmospheric sound.

One of my favourites to listen to is Embryonic Journey running straight into White Rabbit by Jefferson Airplane on Surrealistic Pillow.
The melodic and fluid acoustic guitar sound of Embryonic Journey followed by Grace’s haunting vocal on White Rabbit gives me chillls every time.


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