Whether you’re a music aficionado, or just someone who likes to have a background soundtrack to what you’re doing at home, there are some great larger-sized wireless speaker options out there today. The sound on many of these speakers is excellent, and there are options that can suit just about any budget.
We’ve compiled a list of the top picks.
Sonos is known for its user friendly compact wireless speakers. The line has become very popular with consumers since its introduction a couple years ago.
With deep, crystal clear hi-fi sound, the Sonos line has a sleek, versatile design that easily fits anywhere in your home that needs sound, and it’s easily controlled via your smartphone using the free Sonos app.
The Sonos PLAY:1 features two custom-designed drivers with dedicated amplifiers. Sonos says this provides “all-digital sound architecture,” which reproduces sound more precisely. For the audio geeks; these drivers are in a Bi-Amplified configuration,using Class D amplification, tuned to match each driver to the cabinet, with a passive bass radiator, which augments that deep bass response.
Sonos also has a feature called Trueplay which uses your smartphone to automatically analyze the acoustic properties of the room, including size and even the location of furniture, and then fine tunes the drivers for a perfectly configured sound experience no matter where you’ve placed the speakers.
With Wi-Fi connectivity you can stream your iTunes library, music services, or radio stations. And the smart properties of the entire scaleable Sonos system means you can stream or play music to every speaker in the house, or choose different sound for different rooms. It’s very versatile. You can even set up two PLAY:1 speakers as separate left and right channels so you can really immerse yourself in the sound.
The PLAY:5 takes all the goodness of the PLAY:1 and makes it bigger. Six custom designed drivers with dedicated amplifiers produce rich sound that’s deep and vibrant, and gives you even more power. The Play 5 also sports a 3.5mm Aux. audio input connection, for optimum performance from external sources.
This oddly-shaped speaker may look a little like a musical football, but don’t let that fool you. This speaker sounds amazing and it can crank!
I reviewed the Samsung Radiant 360 last year and I was crushed when it had to go back to Samsung because I really enjoyed it.
The speaker uses ‘Ring Radiator’ audio technology to deliver sound evenly throughout your room so there are no dead spots. In essence it’s sending sound out in all directions so you can place it in the middle of a large space, and it sounds great from every angle.
The speaker is controlled via Samsung’s Multiroom App 2.0 so you can get access to your music library or your favourite online music services.
You can also connect multiple compatible speakers over WiFi to enjoy music wirelessly throughout your home.
There’s almost no one who can say Bose speakers don’t sound amazing. The SoundTouch line is no exception. Compact, portable, and easy to set up, the Bose SoundTouch 10 is the smallest speaker in the SoundTouch series.
Controlled via the free SoundTouch app, you can access streaming music services, internet radio stations, or your music library. I’ve reviewed this entire line too, and though the app and the connectivity could use some tweaks, the sound is top notch.
From audio giants Harman Kardon comes rich stereo sound at the touch of a button with the Harman Kardon OMNI 20 (below). With Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, plus a 3.5mm mini-jack, this wireless HD stereo loudspeaker connects many different audio devices and seamlessly streams your favourite tunes. Similar to other systems, this too can support multiple speakers for quality sound throughout your home.
If you’re in the market for a sound bar, there are some great new choices.
This LG SH2 sound bar delivers a big sound with 100 watts through 2.1 channels. You can use it to connect to your TV for shows and movies with richer, fuller sound with the convenience of wireless connectivity, or use it to enjoy your music. A wired subwoofer adds in deep bass to the system.
Maybe expansion is on your mind. If you’re looking to grow your existing Sonos system and give it some more versatility, or you already have wired speakers but want them to be smarter and more connected, the Sonos Connect:Amp is a high-powered amplifier that can turn your speakers into a wireless music streaming system.
With Class D amps, it can power any speakers with 55W per channel; and Sonos means ‘any’. The ConnectAmp lets you play all your music on the speakers you already own.
While you can connect wirelessly to speakers like the above mentioned PLAY:1 and PLAY:5, you can also use the audio inputs to plug in what you already have. The Connect:Amp has a single stereo RCA input that can be used to connect an external audio device—like a turntable or an iPod dock.
The ConnectAmp also has some neat features like a wake-up setting that lets you wake up to music or audio in one room, or all over the house. Just hit snooze to get a few minutes more sleep. You can also fall asleep to music using the sleep timer.
The CONNECT:AMP has a two-port Ethernet switch to bring standard Internet connectivity to your set-top box, DVR, PC, game console or NAS drive.
So if you’re shopping for a pair of larger, superior quality sounding wireless speakers from some of the top brands, this list is a great place to start. You’ll get excellent audio quality, small size and smart connectivity all in one.