Best wireless music systems for the home
If setting up new home audio equipment leaves you feeling confused and not knowing what cable goes where, make things simple and go wireless instead. Not only is it a lot easier to set up, but there will be less wires and cables around the house, making it a lot neater.
There are many different options when buying wireless music systems so before you buy, find out what connection works best for you.
If you own an Apple device such as an iPhone, iPod, Mac or iPad, stream music straight from these devices to speakers using AirPlay. You can stream using Wi-Fi or Bluetooth although Wi-Fi is the preferred option as the sound quality is better. It’s not without its faults as there are occasional drop outs. AirPlay also works for streaming content to your HDTV.
AirPlay enabled speakers work as a receiver to the device and play the music as well as display the track information. One source, such as your iPhone, can stream to multiple receivers, allowing your music to play in multiple rooms. You can control where it plays through the Apple Remote app. If you want to play music throughout the house, select multiple speakers from the AirPlay menu in iTunes or select the individual devices that you want to receive the audio. If you don’t have speakers with AirPlay, simply connect your current wireless speakers to AirPort Express.
There are downsides to this wireless option. One being that only one app can use AirPlay at a time and multiple speakers can only play the same content rather than play different songs from that one device. Airplay is built into a range of speakers, receivers and stereo systems so make sure you check the product specifications to make sure it’s integrated before you buy.
Denon Ceol Piccolo DAB/FM CD Wireless Micro System
This audio system offers many ways to connect including AirPlay by Apple. Stream music straight from your Apple device either from your iTunes library, an online streaming service or an internet radio station. It also comes with an iPod dock and front USB port.
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Bluetooth enabled music systems are easier to connect than any other wireless option. If you want to play music from your smartphone or tablet through your home speakers, simply pair the devices together. You don’t need any other equipment or apps which makes it simpler than connecting over Wi-Fi. You can only stream to a single speaker set at a time and because Bluetooth only works up to a range of 10m, this option is best used for one room rather than multi-room. You can buy a range of Bluetooth speakers, both for the home and portable. Mains powered wireless speakers that are used in the home offer better quality of sound than battery operated portable ones that tend to deliver MP3 like quality sound.
Panasonic Wireless Flat Panel Hi-Fi System
Listen to CDs, DAB radio or connect your device using either Bluetooth or NFC technology. This room filling device sounds clear and crisp and uses noise cancelling technology to reduce distortion. Pair your device with this audio system or connect via NFC by simply touching your device to the Hi-Fi for an instant connection.
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When connecting speakers over a wireless network, you have the option of streaming music over multiple rooms. Some systems even allow you to play different songs into different rooms. You can start small with only one speaker and then build up your collection over time. You can even connect your wireless system to your TV to create a surround sound experience. Wi-Fi sounds better than Bluetooth as it can carry a lot more information.
Here are some of the best wireless multi-room audio systems:
Sonos is a collection of Hi-Fi wireless speakers along with other audio components. You can control all of the connections through an app on your phone, tablet or PC. Simply connect to your home Wi-Fi network and then enjoy your music on its own dedicated wireless network. This system delivers high quality with no skips, delays or drop outs. You can control what plays in each room using the app and can add as many speakers to the network as you require. You can also connect Sonos to your current Hi-Fi equipment using the Connect or Connect:Amp. They allow you to connect to either your wired system or home theatre system. The Sonos can also be connected to your television for the ultimate home cinema experience.
Bose SoundTouch 20
Bose SoundTouch 20 works on your home Wi-Fi network giving you instant access to online radio stations, playlists from your own library and music streaming services like Spotify. Similar to that of your car radio, you have six pre-sets so that your favourite tunes are just the touch of a button away. All you need to get started is one SoundTouch system and home Wi-Fi. You can build up your collection by adding more systems to other rooms in your home. The app gives you control over what is played. You can play different music in different rooms or the same music in every room. Control this from your smartphone, tablet or PC.
Samsung Wireless Audio Multi-room
The home audio system from Samsung allows you to set up multi-room audio, all controlled from your smartphone or tablet. This system is centred on the multi-room hub. You can build up your amount of speakers and connect them to the hub to stream music stored on multiple devices as well as straight from online streaming services such as Deezer and Spotify. As with others, you can control what is played in what room, whether you want the same song played into all rooms or just the one. Family and friends can also play the music stored on their devices as long as they download the multi-room app.
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