96kHz/24-bit FLAC, Chandos CHAN 10763 (supplied by www.theclassicalshop.com)

Recorded using a Yamaha CFX pianoforte at Potton Hall, Suffolk, last year, Vol.5 in Bavouzet’s series offers six sonatas: Hob.XVI:12, 13, 22 and Nos 40-42, together with an ‘Epilogue’. This last track, as the pianist explains, is a supplementary ‘interpretation’ at slowed tempo of the minor-key trio section from the Sonata in A (No.12). It’s a quiet coda to the heady adventures of Haydn’s keyboard writing that give a green light to Bavouzet’s imagination; he’s always elegant, delighting in the twists and turns, the unexpected pauses. Incidentally, Beethoven was perhaps familiar with No.42, as you will find motifs in the Andante (from 5m-6m 25s) suggestive of his Hammerklavier Sonata! The clean piano sound has enough hall ambience to give a sense of space without introducing blurring or hardness. CB

Sound Quality: 85%

Hi-Fi News Lab Report

The 96kHz sample rate is overly sufficient to capture the ~16kHz bandwidth of this pianoforte and the 24-bit range is better used than with, say, most modern rock recordings. There’s always 15dB+ of headroom and noise is very low. PM