The QFX Elite Series is like Sonos without the price tag


#1

Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2017/07/01/the-qfx-elite-series-is-like-s.html


#2

I bought one of these, the E-350 “Schubert” model in the middle. So far, I have been completely unable to connect it to my wifi network with WPA2 pre-shared key password, either directly through it’s web interface (such as it is) or through the app for iOS. I called the company during normal business hours and waited 20 minutes to be put through to “technical support” and finally hung up, intending to call them later. There does not appear to be any firmware updates on the QFX website, even though the web interface for the speaker implies firmware updates can be applied. I hope others have better luck with this thing. As far as I’m concerned, it is not “dead simple” to connect. I haven’t exhausted all support options, but if I do and it’s not reliably on my basic protected wifi network, this will be returned post haste.


#3

I somehow got the speaker to connect to the wifi network. It involved a reboot of the router (probably not the problem) and 3 more attempts to connect to the wifi network.

First time I played a song through it from my Mac using iTunes, it caused the song to restart after 30 seconds or so.

I restarted iTunes, and I am now playing full songs through the QFX. However, the music is horribly out of synch between computer, QFX, August speaker, and AppleTV connected to stereo. And, the QFX does not respond to volume control from within iTunes.

In short, this product is so incredibly disappointing, I can’t even describe. It was difficult to connect. It does not respond to basic controls. It does not stay in synch. And further to that, the Schubert model appears to have only 1 driver. I am going to return this to the store from where I purchased and buy an August WS300, which works like a champ: http://www.augustint.com/en/productmsg-1-289.html


#4

I think I’ll stick with the QFX I already have.


#5

The linked speaker is more than twice as expensive, and doesn’t seem to be available in the United States. Can you offer advice on good speakers in the $59 range?


#6

Johnny, it very much depends on what you are looking for in your speaker.

My primary criteria was AirPlay compatibility so that I can “push” music from my Macintosh’s iTunes, to various points around the house. In my case, I have a high quality stereo and speakers in the office connected to the Mac, and high quality stereo and speakers in the living room. I wanted something to fill in sound for the bedroom and kitchen. The living room gets an AppleTV, connected to the TV of course. And I wanted the speakers in the kitchen and bedroom to be fairly small. I have been pleased with the August WS300 in the bedroom, and will get another for the kitchen now that the QFX has failed to meet my needs.

When I searched and found the August, I discovered that most speakers advertising AirPlay compatibility were in the $300-400 range! Seriously! This is why I picked the August WS300 without having seen or heard it. I purchased it from Amazon.com and it was sold by a retailer called Daffodil US.

As for sound quality, the August is ok. It doesn’t have great bass, nor does it have crisp, clear highs. But it does well enough to fill sound so that I can move around the house and hear the same thing. The August also has an internal lithium ion battery, which will allow me to take it into the back yard (though I haven’t done this yet.) You might find an August WS150 for less money. It looks to be a 10watt, smaller speaker. It’s funny, Daffodil is selling both for the same price on Amazon right now.

If you just want a Bluetooth speaker, my favorite is the TDK Trek Max A34 speaker. This thing has incredible bass for such a small package, and gets loud enough without distorting to have a very nice party on my 20’ sailboat. High end is good as well. The biggest problem with the Trek Max is that it uses a 2000mAh nickle metal hydride battery. NiMH batteries lose charge even when the speaker is turned off, and 2000mAh is not very much capacity in the age of lithium ion batteries. After about 3 years I did have to buy a new battery.

Another strong contender in the Bluetooth speaker category is the Logitech Ultimate Ears BOOM speaker. I have not compared this next to my Trek Max, but I have heard them by themselves. Bass response is good, it gets pretty loud without distorting, and I don’t recall the high end being terrible. The problem I have with the UE Boom is that the cylindrical shape, designed to stand on its end, upright, is not practical on a sailboat.


#7

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