Summer isn’t only the season where we all want to be outside listening to a great tune, it’s also when a lot of those great tunes come out. Shameless self-promotion aside, I’m very excited to say that I’m releasing my very first E.P on 7th July 2014. ‘Saxhouse’ is going to be landing next month and I don’t want everybody listening to it on stereos from 1985, so here’s my run-down of the best sound system brands that you should be looking into this season. Oh and if you want to read the press release about my new E.P (did I mention I had an E.P coming out?) you can here.
Sonos is widely agreed to be one of the very best sound systems for most purposes, from home entertainment to music. The real value in a Sonos system is the thought and time that has gone into the technology behind it. Sonos systems can be connected to your wireless network and stream music anywhere in your home, okay that’s a pretty standard feature nowadays, but these systems use their own wireless frequency within your network. This means that you will always get maximum bandwidth to your speakers and your music won’t cut out, slow down or lose quality in relation to other people using the internet in the building. For those of you who have experienced this staggeringly irritating problem before, this is a huge plus for Sonos customers.
You’ve also got incredible flexibility with Sonos, you can buy the basic system for a relatively low cost and then build additional elements into it over a period of time. This includes a bridge, a sub, extra connections, speakers and more. Sonos takes the gold medal when it comes to the needs of the modern home.
MBL isn’t a brand that you’re likely to have heard of, nor are you likely to find it on the shelves of your nearest supermarket. You’re going to have to venture onto the internet or into the specialist music stores for this one, it’s a hidden gem for enthusiasts and experts. Nobody would ever say that MBL sacrifices on its sound quality, but there is a definite focus on the aesthetic here. Mostly wooden, MBL speakers are stunningly beautiful structures which can be customised to suit your individual decor. I challenge you to find any screws, nuts, bolts, hinges or any fixings visible on an MBL product; its German manufacturers would have a heart attack if you managed it. Everything is sleek, everything is beautifully engineered and everything is, unfortunately, not cheap.
The two main product lines are Reference and Corona and you’d be hard pressed to find speakers or pre-amps for less than £500…
SO Sonos has the clever tech and MBL has the beauty, which brand has the pure sound performance? That honour falls to Wilson Audio, the sound experts responsible for products like Thor’s Hammer and Watch Dog. A favourite of festival bands and DJs around the world, Wilson Audio is a brand dedicated to offering maximum power output without losing out on clarity. You can find Bose and Bang & Olufsen speakers which can throw out more decibels, but they won’t even be tickling the warmth of sound that Wilson kits are capable of producing.
Wilson speakers are monolithic in both size and volume – boasting thick cabinet walls and added bracing. Founder Dave Wilson started the company building speakers in his garage and is dedicated to designing products which closely replicate listening to live music – and he’s doing a good job. Each speaker comes with fully adjustable components for maximum customisation. When you’re itching to listen to another rendition of Saxhouse this summer, you could do much worse than run it through your Wilson Alexandrias…