Forget Tidal—Spotify is my favorite music service/app. We’ll see what the Beats app ends up looking like over the next few years now that Apple has brought the company into the fold, but for now I’m all about Spotify. It’s where all my playlists live, the radio is awesome (sorry Pandora, but yes it’s better than you) and the design is spot-on. And it’s even better on great speakers.
That’s why a good part of my Spotify obsession is driven by Spotify Connect. Spotify Connect is like a better, faster and more reliable AirPlay alternative that works right out of the Spotify app (with select speakers, some of which I’ve listed here below). With AirPlay, you’ve got to run all sound coming from your device through another output (be it a TV, speaker or what have you). With Spotify Connect you only run your music to an outside source. And though I’ve just mentioned it, it’s definitely worth mentioning again—Spotify Connect is fast and very reliable.
Of course, if you don’t have a Spotify Connect speaker, you can always pick up a Gramafon which will make your old speaker Spotify Connect compatible.
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The Bluesound Pulse is a nice rounded rectangle which makes it perfect for someone who just wants something nice—but not crazy. The “audiophile-grade” speakers are capable of playing lossless FLAC recordings, so you can’t really improve on the sonic capabilities of the Pulse. You’ll also appreciate the speedy processor which is 4x faster than comparable models (according to the website)—there’s nothing worse than a slow-loading speaker system (and there’s really no excuse for it anymore).
The Clint Odin is a big wireless speaker. It’s capable of functioning as a standalone speaker or as part of a multi-room setup. The Odin has a bit of a triangular shape when viewed from the top down, which is kind of different and in that regard quite nice. The included stand sits the speaker at 8 degrees—the optimum angle according to Clint. Just point the front angle where you’d like to direct the music, sit back and enjoy.
JBL Authentics L16
The JBL Authentics L16 is a walnut-veneered, single-enclosure wireless speaker that will instantly make any room not only sound better, but look better as well. One cool feature is the NFC-enabled tap-t0-pair option which makes for a very easy way to pair a Bluetooth device. A built-in USB port is handy for charging—or, if your device supports it, you can use the optional Qi wireless charging feature.
The Denon HEOS range of speakers—the 3, 5 and 7—are meant for multi-room sound enjoyment, but are a bit more customizable than other multi-room wireless speaker systems due to their size alone. The 3 is quite small while the 5 is a medium speaker and the 7 is the largest of the bunch.
Bose SoundTouch 20
The Bose SoundTouch I’ve listed last in this list—not because it’s the worst speaker here—because awhile back Bose purchased a sponsored post on DailyTekk promoting it and I don’t want to seem partial (hence the disclosure). But I do love this speaker. It’s been out for awhile now but every new speaker I test gets compared to it because it’s just a solid performer. I love the sound it produces, it doesn’t take up too much space and it’s got a nice display.