When it comes to music, I am happy with my iPhone and the car stereo. I am not a big audiophile and I certainly don't need the best sound you can get. There are lots of audiophiles that are willing to spend big money to get quality music.
For the rich audiophile a new preamp has been unveiled by Chord Electronics called the CPA 8000 Reference stereo preamplifier. The thing looks like some sort of top-secret encryption machine off a submarine that the president would use to launch nuclear missiles.
It's in a big, shiny chassis made from what appears to be aluminum and it has front panel controls. The controls give independent adjustment over left and right channel frequencies. A balance knob and volume control are also on the front along with VU meters for both channels and a multi segment input readout. All I know is this thing better sound REALLY good for the asking price of $50,600.