The SECRETS “Best of Awards” are awarded once a year, in December. The process of deciding on the awards is an arduous one, undertaken by our Editors and Secrets Team. Every year SECRETS has an opportunity to review great products across the spectrum of audio and video components and some products are truly outstanding: it is to the outstanding products that we award the SECRETS Best of Award.
In 2016, we are adding an award category: The SECRETS Thumbs-up Award. The Editorial Team wants to recognize the products that we found to be excellent and which we, as SECRETS, would recommend to any buyer. So the SECRETS Thumbs-up Award is SECRETS Recommended!
Every year we are asked why we do not award a product in every conceivable audio and video category. Simply, it is our practice to not come up with something just to have an award, so we do not award a product in every possible component category. Our categories change from year-to-year. Also we do not attach a “recommended” stamp as we publish reviews throughout the year, although we have been asked to consider. Our SECRETS “Thumbs-Up Award” will now highlight many products that we recommend.
At SECRETS, a “Product of the Year” is something that not only sets the bar for its category, it’s something we believe will inspire real innovation and progress from its competitors. We consider new technologies, performance and value; and when a component excels at all three, we afford it this prestigious recognition.
John Johnson, Editor-in-Chief, initiated the first SECRETS “Bad Ass Award” in 2010. This award is not given out every year and is reserved only for products that test outrageously well. This award will be selectively conferred on products that have intense output, ultra-low distortion, substantial build quality and/or extreme engineering. So the “Bad Ass Award” is given to the product that is outstanding and clearly evokes a Bad Ass response from our team….. “you just know it when you see it!”