I’m in love with a new speaker that plays music from so many sources it would be ridiculous if it wasn’t insanely awesome. It’s the Revo SuperConnect ($427) and it’s a WiFi-enabled, beautifully crafted speaker that is revolutionizing the way I connect with music.
The best sounding Internet-enabled speaker I had tested prior to the Revo SuperConnect was the Bose SoundTouch. While it sounded excellent, it’s Achilles heel was that it was really hard to connect sources other than Pandora or an iTunes library to the system. Frankly, I’m Pandora’d out and my main music library shifted some time ago from iTunes to Spotify.
And that’s exactly why I was so excited to discover the Revo SuperConnect. Not only can it sync up with Spotify directly without having to use a workaround like porting all phone audio to the speaker using AirPlay, but it plays audio from a number of sources that I’d normally never consider listening to (until now) because they had not been packaged well enough.
Let’s talk Spotify first. Revo is one of a dozen or so manufacturers that have created Spotify Connect-enabled speakers. I love Spotify and have been anxiously waiting for it to become more accessible outside of my phone and computer. There are times when I’d rather listen to the service on my best speakers, at home. Playing Spotify content through the SuperConnect is as easy as tapping the speaker icon in the bottom right of the now playing screen and selecting the SuperConnect (as long as the device is powered on).
I love the Internet radio stations I can pull down through the SuperConnect. From the BBC to Oklahoma State University’s public radio to half a dozen different Jazz stations, there’s a great variety of stations I’m discovering and beginning to latch onto. Actually, that’s quite an understatement since you can access over 16,000+ stations from around the world. While these stations have been available online for many years, they haven’t really been accessible (at least I haven’t ever wanted to play them). I mean, who wants to be tied to their computer. It’s just not the listening experience a person expects.
I rarely listen to FM radio (if I do it’s usually NPR in the car), but FM is an option with the Revo SuperConnect. I mean, if you’ve got a favorite station, you might as well listen to it on an amazing speaker.
If you’re in Europe (and many Revo buyers will be as it’s a UK company) then you’ll find plenty of stations to occupy your time through DAB and DAB+ options. Being in the USA, I didn’t get a chance to give this feature a good test.
Some speakers are merely Bluetooth capable. In this case, Bluetooth connectivity is merely an option. I don’t often use this option (as I’ve got Bluetooth speakers coming out the wazoo), but it works great.
Finally, the Revo SuperConnect can playback audio from computers and music servers using DLNA and WLAN technology.
There are two types of products in the world. Those that exist and those that make a statement. The SuperConnect falls into the latter category with abandon.
If you ask me, the SuperConnect has achieved a near perfect fusion of classic and modern styling. The American Walnut casing compliments the anodized aluminum and steel face in a way that gives the whole unit a wicked smooth hipster feel.
The controls are a combination of unique and straightforward. You’ve got a volume dial on the side (also adding to the retro feel since many devices today control volume from a screen) as well as some standard push buttons across the front.
The black display features blue text and icons and puts more information at your disposal than the average radio. To navigate around the screens there’s a small joystick of sorts that makes it pretty easy to move up and down throughout menus or head to the next or previous screens.
The remote is decidedly chunky. It took me awhile to decide if I really loved it or preferred something more along the lines of the minuscule Apple TV remote (which has been the subject of much hate itself over the years). In the end I decided that the remote is bold, meant to be seen and is easy to find. It thick, rectangular design adds to the retro mystique.
In terms of usability, both the onscreen menu and navigation as well as the remote and buttons across the front are all quite easy to use once everything is setup and running.
You’d expect a speaker in this price range to produce outstanding sound and it certainly does for it’s size.
The Revo SuperConnect is a champion among it’s peers in terms of excellent audio output. It sounds good when it’s low and you’re listening to some background music and it sounds good when you pump it up and let the pass start permeating the room.
In terms of loudness, the SuperConnect works best as an in-room speaker (rather than trying to fill multiple rooms), though if you crank it you will hear your music pretty well in the next room.
I found that the EQ settings actually make a noticeable difference in the sound whereas the equalizer settings in many devices I’ve tried don’t seem to do all that much.
If you’re looking for a speaker with some class and panache that connects to just about any audio source you could imagine including the mighty Spotify, look no further than the Revo Connect. This is a speaker that screams taste.