Home Tech: Getting Rid of Wires Without Sacrificing Sound

A lot of us dream of a wireless house — a place where stereos, speakers and video components all live and work together without the eyesore of ugly cables.

To that end, I have good news and bad news.

There is no such thing as a truly wireless house. Electronics need power. Those working on batteries need to be charged or plugged into an outlet. So, at the very least, you will find power cords to contend with.

Then there is the issue of quality and consistency. Most wireless sound and video devices utilize the very same airwaves as cordless telephones, cell phones and Wi-Fi networks. When all that info fights for distance there are pauses, blips and lifeless air — like when a movie playing on a pc ceases and that”buffering” symbol starts spinning.

But new technologies allows for increasing levels of wireless connectivity within the home. In the minimum, we can stream music from various resources to several speakers around the house. It’s not perfect, yet, but it’s getting better.

Beckwith Interiors

Homeowners frequently forfeit some simple pleasures, like songs, for the sake of good design. However, for people who don’t want to make that trade-off, there are ways to get audio throughout the house without threading wires through a wall, hiding them under molding, or giving in and leaving them to snake across the floor. A room like this ought to be dwelt in, and for a lot of us, that means being able to listen to songs or get cinematic surround sound when watching a film.

Bose CineMate – $1,499

Using wireless technologies makes the most sense with home theater systems which typically employ between five and seven speakers positioned around the room. Bose makes many systems that fit the bill. In this picture, it’s a single speaker called a Sound Bar. The bar still has to be plugged in, though.


Bose CineMate Series II Home Theater Speaker System — Bose 2.1-channel Home Th – $799.95

A receiver/transmitter which Bose calls the Acoustimass Module utilizes wireless to transmit sound throughout the space, including to any wireless speakers put on either side or at the back of the space.

(m) + charles shore INTERIORS

Remember, speakers still require a power source — even very small ones like those mounted onto the ceiling of the room. Wires for speakers mounted onto a wall or ceiling still have to be hauled through a wall and emerge in the point of connection.

Sonos Play3 – $299

Getting great sound from a sound source — instead of a TV for a house entertainment experience — may be a little more complicated, especially for audiophiles who trophy fidelity above all else. However, the arrival of digital music is creating this a good deal simpler to attain.

There are a range of ways to stream music from wherever it’s stored, such as iTunes, a home computer, a server, backup storage or in the Internet. Sonos makes some of the best-reviewed solutions for streaming music from several sources. The Sonos Play:5 and new, smaller Play:3 provide electronic music from just about any source. Connect with the Sonos Zone Bridge (sold separately) and find all music saved on a hard drive, either at an iTunes library or on Internet radio channels. You may get just about any subscription music support like Pandora, Rhapsody or Spotify, and stream it to any pair of speakers anywhere in the house.

It’s a fantastic way to get music throughout a house, without a custom installer heading through the walls and establishing an expensive whole-home system. It’s easy to use and a good addition for somebody that’s either already invested in some basic home audio equipment or starting from scratch. Sonos makes a control, but you may download an app that turns just about any handheld device into a personal remote controller.

Each unit is a speaker. The Play:5 delivers large sound from a bigger speaker along with also the newer Play: 3 is a more compact unit that easily tucks away and out of sight. And it solves the problem of getting sound throughout a house wirelessly. Simply plug them in, load the software, and you’ve got music everywhere. You can play the very same tracks throughout the house, or various tunes in various rooms. It truly is that simple.

Libratone – $699

One way sound companies are getting around the interference issue is by using airwaves designated expressly for this particular sound or video signal. That’s what Apple has done with AirPlay, and a fantastic majority of audio products are allowed for AirPlay, meaning they’ll communicate with one another and get music stored in iTunes.

Libratone speakers are fresh out of this Nordic company and should appeal to fans of all forms of design. The fabric covers seem like sensed, and the sound quality should appease some of the very devoted audiophiles.

bicom-inc. com

playGo – $450

There are numerous solutions that plug into a computer or server where music is saved, and then stream it to speakers.


playGo USB – $450

The playGo from Bicom does exactly that with a high degree of fidelity, and comes in white or orange.

Studio Pali Fekete architects [SPF:a]

Technology is progressing at a fairly rapid rate. One promising product is your MusicLites light bulb speaker. Produced in partnership with Sylvania, these bulbs seem like the kind used in overhead may light. Just twist them and sync with a transmitter that plugs into a computer, stereo or mobile device. The sound travels through the lightbulbs, wherever they are in the house.

It’s a fantastic concept, but there are a couple of downsides to the product in its original incarnation. The bulb looks slightly different than traditional could light bulbs, and doesn’t dim in concert with the rest of the lights in the room when controlled through a wall mounted dimmer. It may dim when using the MusicLites remote controller, but it doesn’t match up perfectly with all the light level elsewhere.

I had trouble syncing the machine when I tried it in the home. It’s a fantastic idea but not really prepared for the mass market.

Sound businesses understand that consumers want wireless products and are developing them as swiftly as possible. But attaining a quality product is a good deal harder than we’d like. As a single loudspeaker manufacturer once explained If wireless worked well, there will be no wired products.

More: Creating a Media Console Work
Speakers Matter — and Could Look Good Too
Great Rooms, Great TV Viewing
Where to Set the TV

See related