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    Review | McIntosh RS200 Wireless Speaker

     

     

    The McIntosh RS200 wireless loudspeaker system has been in my house for a few months, getting a full workout from me, my wife, and eight year old daughter. Each of us has a completely different routine for playing music through this all-in-one device and each of us have thoroughly enjoyed and appreciated this speaker. The RS200 checks many boxes on my list of what makes a great all-in-one unit, although it has its share of possible downsides depending on one's use case. Overall I love the speaker, my family loves the speaker, and our limited number of pandemic house guests have loved the speaker. Here's my complete take on the McIntosh RS200 wireless loudspeaker system.

     


    The Tangibles 

     

    The RS200 is one of those products that must be seen and touched in person. When I first saw the photos on the day it launched, I thought the device looked a little dated. I thought to myself, nice try McIntosh, maybe next time. Fortunately, after I unboxed the unit, a warm fuzzy wave of reality washed over me as I saw and touched it for the first time. This thing is classic McIntosh, with substantial heft, a gloss finish that no photograph does justice, LED buttons that illuminate green, unmistakable McIntosh blue meters, real volume and input selection dials, and a base platform that present the RS200 as if it's floating above one's table. 

     

    I can't stress enough how impressed I was by the RS200's physical characteristics. I've reviewed hundreds of high end audio products, used thousands more, and even experienced the ultimate in luxury car audio systems at the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance. I understand impressive products when I see them. The McIntosh RS200 is a truly impressive product. 

     

     

    RS200 Front hi res.jpg

     

     

    Under the hood the RS200 is loaded with 650 watts of amplification driving eight speakers ((2) 4” x 6” woofers, (4) 2” midranges and (2) ¾” tweeters). That's all well and good as physics plays an important role in sound reproduction, but nothing is more important with all-in-one speakers than digital signal processing (DSP). Audiophiles shouldn't kid themselves into thinking there's a mythical straight wire with gain version somewhere. EVERY all-in-one needs DSP or it will sound terrible. Fortunately, the R200 features good DSP that's adjusted by the listener with a single three position switch. 

     

    Around back, the McIntosh absolutely nailed what needed to be nailed (figuratively). There's no plastic WiFi antenna! Integrating a WiFi antenna into a product isn't a trivial task. This is why most niche audio manufacturers are stuck with the same one from a Linksys router circa 1998. Hats off to the McIntosh design team for getting this done. 

     

    Touching on DSP one more time, the user selectable EQ setting mentioned above is on the back of the RS200. The setting requires zero knowledge of what's going on inside the box as it lists the options as Wall, Free, or Table. It's pretty self explanatory that the setting should be dictated by the placement of the speaker. There are no hard and fast rules though. Whatever setting sounds best to the listener, is the best setting. 

     

    The RS200 is a WiFi only speaker as shipped. I was initially surprised by this as McIntosh as a company is all about delivering solid products that work, extremely thorough user manuals, etc... and I just figured this product would have an ultra reliable wired Ethernet connection. Fortunately, after months of use, I never experienced a single issue with the RS200's 802.11n wireless capabilities. Sure, 802.11ac or now even WiFi 6, would be nice, but one could also say, don't fix what's not broken. 

     

    After sending this review to McIntosh for fact checking prior to publication, I was informed by the Mc team that an Ethernet adapter can be added to the RS200. That jogged my memory. I forgot I'd previously purchase a USB to Ethernet adapter for, if I remember correctly, a different McIntosh, from Monoprice. I searched my box of adapters and other items, and found the $14.99 adapter! I connected it to the RS200's service port and it worked perfectly. So yes, the McIntosh RS200 works great as either a WiFi or wired Ethernet device. Here's a link to the adapter I used (LINK). 

     

    Other inputs include HDMI ARC, USB, optical and an auxiliary connection. If I had the space for the RS200 below my Samsung Frame TV, I'd have it connected via HDMI ARC in a heartbeat. It would be a fantastic way to bring one's television experience to another level in many ways. I played around with the RS200's USB input when I first received the unit. It works as it should, connected to Windows, macOS, and even Linux audio endpoints. The thing is though, these devices all require more cables, for power and audio, that aren't necessary to get maximum performance from the RS200. 

     

    The last tangible goody included with the RS200 is a real remote control. It isn't a typical solid block of aluminum style of high end remote, but it gets the job done when needed. Over 99% of the time the RS200 was controlled by a phone or tablet in my house. The physical remote came in handy one time and I can see why many people may want this slim remote available should the need arise. 

     

     

    RS200 Back hi res.jpg

     


     

    The Intangibles 

     

    The McIntosh RS200 is packed with tons of logo'd technologies and capabilities such as Bluetooth 5.0, aptX HD, DTS, Alexa, AirPlay and more. It's certainly nice to have these as options. I love options even though I don't use them. I can see why others prefer to use Bluetooth while I wouldn't be caught dead using the technology. Live and let listen as I like to say. 

     

    The elephant in the room, and my largest issue with the McIntosh RS200 is its use of the DTS Play-Fi platform. Most people who don't eat, sleep, and breathe this stuff don't realize that most high end audio companies select technology platforms from a small number of manufacturers such as Phorus (DTS Play-Fi), StreamUnlimited, ConversDigital, and a couple others. Purchasing modules that support Spotify, Alexa, Qobuz, Tidal, DLNA, etc... is far more cost effective than for an audio company to attempt to reinvent the wheel. These platforms require a serious technical staff with skills far different from those required at an audio company. 

     

    DTS Play-Fi has serious issues to say the least. Before readers write the RS200 off, please note that all is far from lost due to the RS200's support of all the aforementioned options. I'll get further into how I took the RS200 to the next level a bit later in this review. I've previously written about my distaste for Play-Fi and detailed extensively why I think it's a technology from the early 2000s that hasn't advanced with the home audio world. After my previous article I was contacted by the Play-Fi product manager to discuss my findings and listen to the company plead its case. Several years later, Play-Fi has added one sorely needed feature, but its implementation is lacking. 

     

    Rather than make this review a referendum on Play-Fi, I'll just go over a couple examples of how it works with the RS200. This should help readers come to their own conclusions. Using the Play-Fi app on iOS one can login to many music services such as Amazon Music HD, Qobuz, Tidal, and two very tough services for a manufacturer to work with, SiriusXM and Pandora. In fact, it's often those two services that sway manufacturers to use a specific technology platform. Anyway, once logged in, it's possible to stream music from those services to the RS200. 

     

    RS200 Lifestyle No Grills.jpgHere's the rub. Music from services Qobuz, Tidal, and Amazon streams through one's mobile device before hitting the RS200, with a couple exceptions I'll discuss in a bit. Think about this. If Netflix sent movies through your television remote control and then on to your TV, the whole time using the remote's battery, the company would be out of business. This is essentially how Play-Fi works. Select a track from Qobuz, it's sent from Qobuz to your phone, then from your phone to the RS200. This is identical to how AirPlay works as well, but AirPlay isn't a platform, it's a technology that streams music and video from iOS devices. Fortunately, Spotify doesn't work this way and neither to the RS200's one touch buttons. Spotify requires more control over the user experience, with all hardware integrations, and requires use of its own app. This streams directly from the Spotify cloud to the RS200. 

     

    Play-Fi's answer to its dated way of routing music is its Transfer Playback feature. At first blush it sounds perfect, but in reality it's a half-baked attempt to support what most other platforms support. Here's how it works. Select an album from a streaming service such as Qobuz and press play. Then, select the icon with an arrow inside a square to transfer playback, in other words, direct the audio stream to go from Qobuz right to the RS200.

     

    The problems arise if the listener wants to add another track to the queue. I received an error message saying "This file is unsupported" when I attempted to do this. More problems arise when switching to a different album or track on another album. Each new item must be transferred to the RS200 through the Transfer Playback process in order to use the direct cloud to device path. The process within the Play-Fi app isn't a one touch and it's done type of thing. Transferring playback puts the app into a mode that makes the listener use it in ways nobody would naturally use it. If transferring playback sent all subsequent tracks directly to the RS200, it would be golden. However, an album by album or track by track music traffic cop type of experience is unacceptable in 2020. 

     

    An additional way to stream content directly from cloud services such as Tidal, Amazon, and SiriusXM is actually pretty cool for some use cases. It's possible to set four presets for the sleek buttons on top of the RS200 (or the remote control), so one touch starts the audio streaming regardless of one's iOS or Android device. A mobile or tablet isn't required at all for the presets to function. Fans of SiriusXM can easily configure a preset to stream a favorite channel and get access to that channel with a tap of the button. I tested this feature by setting preset 1 to my Computer Audiophile 100 playlist in Tidal. I then shut off my iPad Pro with the Play-Fi app (just as a test), tapped the number 1 button, and all was right in the world as music flowed directly to the RS200 from Tidal. If one's musical habits involve playlists or directly accessed content such as specific albums or internet radio stations (iHeart, SiriusXM), these one touch buttons are fantastic. 

     

    Enough about Play-Fi because the RS200 shouldn't be defined by this technology. 

     

    Note: Play-Fi sends information to Google Analytics. It isn't possible to disable this. Using other playback methods outside of Play-Fi (AirPlay) keeps one's information from being collected. 

     

     

    Taking The RS200 To Another Level 

     

    Given the RS200's support for DLNA and AirPlay, listeners have a whole host of options for getting music to the device. Sure, AirPlay streams music through the iOS device just like Play-Fi, however Roon fully supports AirPlay audio devices. Thus, one way to take the RS200 to the next level, while keeping it wireless without added devices attached to the unit, is to use Roon. Within Roon, the RS200 appears as an AirPlay audio device and accepts 16 bit / 44.1 music. Roon converts all other sample rates to 44.1 prior to sending them on to the RS200. 

     

    In my dining room I placed an iPad Pro running Roon near the RS200. My family and house guests easily browsed, selected, and listened to music through the RS200 without a single issue. Everything just worked. AirPlay handles lossless audio streams but doesn't allow an app like Roon to control the audio clock. Because of this, Roon considers the audio path High Quality rather than giving it the Lossless label. If anyone thinks the high quality of AirPlay was an issue in my house, they'd be sorely mistaken. Everyone who heard the RS200 absolutely loved the sound. 

     

    RS200 Lifestyle.jpgUsing Roon and AirPlay is how I listened to the RS200 for much of the time. When my daughter goes to school and my wife goes to work, I have many opportunities to site down and just listen. I listened to probably 100 albums through the R200 on my own time. I know the sonic signature of this device extremely well. Crystal clear high frequencies, solid midrange that's most important to me as a listener, and really good bass. I mean really good bass compared to the competitors in this all-in-one space. If I had to select just one device in this category to live with for the rest of my life, it would be the McIntosh RS200 because of its sound quality. No, it doesn't beat the $10,000+ Mytek and Sonus Faber system I previously setup in this space, but this is a different animal for less than half price. It sounds better than anything from Naim, Dynaudio, Bluesound, Sonos etc... This is a category of device that I absolutely love and of which I consider myself a connoisseur. The McIntosh Rs200 is the new class leader.

     

    In addition to sending streams to the RS200 via AirPlay, I used DLNA a little bit. I suppose one could say the sound quality of the RS200 via DLNA is a touch better, but that's only if one is sitting down and trying to hear differences. In 99% of the use cases for the RS200, DLNA or AirPlay won't matter for sonics. Where it does matter is volume control. 

     

    Via AirPlay Roon can control the volume on the RS200. However, the communication isn't two-way. After adjusting the volume with the RS200's physical dial, Roon doesn't update the level of the actual volume. It still thinks it's at the level that it set. Subsequently changing the volume in Roon causes the RS200's volume to jump immediately to the level set within Roon. This may be a big deal if the level was set for soft playback on the local device and Roon was at high volume. 

     

    Via DLNA the volume control is a two-way street. Adjusting the volume in either an app or with the physical dial works perfect. For example, I used Audirvana to send some high resolution audio to the RS200. I adjusted the volume using the physical dial and this was updated very quickly in Audirvana. It's a really nice feature to have, especially if others in the household or guests use the system. Nobody can be expected to just know how all volume controls work. With DLNA and the RS200, nobody has to know.

     

    While listening to the RS200 critically, I tested the three EQ settings on the rear of the unit. My personal favorite setting, given that the RS200 was placed near a wall and on a table without any reflections, was the wall setting. I thought the bass was a bit much with the Free setting and absolutely right with the wall setting. Readers shouldn't be under any illusions that the RS200 is as transparent as something like the McIntosh XRT2.1K loudspeakers. It certainly isn't, but the sound quality from the device is better than what one can get from any other device I've heard in this class. We all have limitations with respect to areas in our homes we'd like to play music. If one has a huge listening room, then look at the XRT2.1K. If one wants to share music and create some experiences with friends and family in a "normal" room of the house, then the RS200 is absolutely up to the task. It has a fun sound, high end sound, punchy sound, and an easy sound to listen to for hours on end. 

     

    When considering the RS200, the most important question each potential customer must ask is, where is my music located? This may sound strange at first, but the answer dictates how one can use the RS200. If one's music is "in" Spotify, the RS200 will stream straight from the cloud to the device and enable all the usual controls. If one has music "in" Roon or on a DLNA server at home, the experience will be immensely enjoyable and the sound quality will be second to none. I encourage readers to take the RS200 to the next level and unleash its full potential. 

     


    Conclusions 

     

    The McIntosh RS200 wireless speaker system must be seen and heard in person to fully realize its class leading sonic performance and its exquisite build quality. Looking at the RS200 in photos or videos tells as much about the device as does looking at the Van Gogh museum through VR goggles. Sure it's neat, but the texture of Van Gogh's paintings must be seen in person to be believed and to implant unforgettable memories. The same goes for the RS200. As soon as I unboxed it, I realized it was a special component. As soon as I started listening, I knew it was a memory maker.

     

     

    Product Information:

    Manufacturer: McIntosh Labs

    Model: RS200 Wireless Speaker System

    Price: $3,000

    Product Page: LINK

    User Manual: LINK

    Quick Start Guide: LINK

    Brochure: LINK

     

     

     


     



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    4 hours ago, ShawnC said:

    When It's mostly acoustic guitars and clean voices, It's hard to screw that up on a recording

    I respectfully disagree with this.  Accurate capture and playback of acoustic guitars (and human voices) is one of the more difficult tasks for a recording engineer.  Presenting a lifelike acoustic guitar sound and image (ie not too big and not too small) is not that difficult.  But an accurate recording sounds like the guitar that was recorded, rather than a generic instrument.

     

    A Gibson J200 sounds quite different from a Martin O-16NY, and a big archtop with a carved spruce top (eg an 18” Gibson Super 400 or an original Epiphone Emperor) sounds quite different from a 16” laminated maple box like the ES175 that Wes Montgomery played on his first few albums.  Similarly, a single cone resonator guitar like a National Style 0 sounds very different from a tricone.

     

    There are many well known and widely loved recordings on which it’s not at all clear what’s being played.  This often reflects the general belief that they all sound alike, which becomes a self fulfilling prophecy.

     

    Good single unit speaker systems like the reviewed unit are actually well suited to acoustic guitar reproduction. The sound source is similar to a guitar, with different parts generating different spectral segments and projecting the sound from what’s really an effective single point once you’re at least a few feet away from it.

     

    I do think it important to consider the cabinet on which you place it.  A big wooden box with 10+ cubic feet of interior space and unbraced flat surfaces can add a lot of unwanted resonance. It’s not dissimilar to an acoustic guitar of similar size.

     

    I’d also add that the latest BT AptX HD sounds decent+ and is not your father’s Bluetooth.  But if you want to use a BT device in a home theater or MC system, you have to use the latest low latency codecs - and I can hear a slight degradation in definition and presentation between HD (better) and LL.  The LL smears everything just enough to hear it in better systems.  
     

    OTOH, I haven’t found a MC distribution system that lets me send individual channels over a network.  So I don’t know how we could use one or more of these units for HT or MC audio - and this Mac piece would probably be an excellent rear pair.  You can use LL BT driven by a MC DAC to drive powered speakers in decent synch with acceptable (although sometimes barely audible) delays among them, if you can’t run wires and want bigger sound in a particular space than your TV or stereo system will provide.

     

    I really like this McIntosh device, and the review is stellar - informative, easy to read, and enjoyable.  I won’t be spending 3 large on such a device, but if I wanted one this would be high on my list.  It’s great to know that the sheer physical pleasure of McIntosh products persists unchanged through all these years and ownership changes. I think Frank would be pleased.

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    38 minutes ago, bluesman said:

    I respectfully disagree with this.  Accurate capture and playback of acoustic guitars (and human voices) is one of the more difficult tasks for a recording engineer.  Presenting a lifelike acoustic guitar sound and image (ie not too big and not too small) is not that difficult.  But an accurate recording sounds like the guitar that was recorded, rather than a generic instrument.

     

    A Gibson J200 sounds quite different from a Martin O-16NY, and a big archtop with a carved spruce top (eg an 18” Gibson Super 400 or an original Epiphone Emperor) sounds quite different from a 16” laminated maple box like the ES175 that Wes Montgomery played on his first few albums.  Similarly, a single cone resonator guitar like a National Style 0 sounds very different from a tricone.

     

    There are many well known and widely loved recordings on which it’s not at all clear what’s being played.  This often reflects the general belief that they all sound alike, which becomes a self fulfilling prophecy.

     

    Good single unit speaker systems like the reviewed unit are actually well suited to acoustic guitar reproduction. The sound source is similar to a guitar, with different parts generating different spectral segments and projecting the sound from what’s really an effective single point once you’re at least a few feet away from it.

     

    I do think it important to consider the cabinet on which you place it.  A big wooden box with 10+ cubic feet of interior space and unbraced flat surfaces can add a lot of unwanted resonance. It’s not dissimilar to an acoustic guitar of similar size.

     

    I’d also add that the latest BT AptX HD sounds decent+ and is not your father’s Bluetooth.  But if you want to use a BT device in a home theater or MC system, you have to use the latest low latency codecs - and I can hear a slight degradation in definition and presentation between HD (better) and LL.  The LL smears everything just enough to hear it in better systems.  
     

    OTOH, I haven’t found a MC distribution system that lets me send individual channels over a network.  So I don’t know how we could use one or more of these units for HT or MC audio - and this Mac piece would probably be an excellent rear pair.  You can use LL BT driven by a MC DAC to drive powered speakers in decent synch with acceptable (although sometimes barely audible) delays among them, if you can’t run wires and want bigger sound in a particular space than your TV or stereo system will provide.

     

    I really like this McIntosh device, and the review is stellar - informative, easy to read, and enjoyable.  I won’t be spending 3 large on such a device, but if I wanted one this would be high on my list.  It’s great to know that the sheer physical pleasure of McIntosh products persists unchanged through all these years and ownership changes. I think Frank would be pleased.

    I didn’t say anything about being accurate. Just that a human voice and or an acoustic guitar or combo has a fantastic sound quality to listen too. You could say the same for a violin and vocals or whatever. But any decent engineer should baby able to recreate the human voice and an acoustic or whatever without an trivial problems. Now to listen to a portion of music and pick out every detail like what model of guitar and guitar strings, pickups, amps and mics that were used are beyond the scope of this thread and wasn’t what my post was about. 

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    1 hour ago, ShawnC said:

    I didn’t say anything about being accurate. Just that a human voice and or an acoustic guitar or combo has a fantastic sound quality to listen too. You could say the same for a violin and vocals or whatever. But any decent engineer should baby able to recreate the human voice and an acoustic or whatever without an trivial problems. Now to listen to a portion of music and pick out every detail like what model of guitar and guitar strings, pickups, amps and mics that were used are beyond the scope of this thread and wasn’t what my post was about. 

    Wow - I'm sorry you took umbrage at my post. To be honest, I didn't (and still can't) imagine that it brought so negative a response.  To me (and, I bet, to most audiophiles), a recording that masks or alters gross differences in SQ to the point at which they become inaudible is screwed up by any definition.

     

    The differences I'm describing are not so subtle that it takes any knowledge of guitars to hear them, and it doesn't matter whether or not you know which is which.  What matters is that you can hear the differences I'm discussing - they are big and should be clearly audible over any half decent system.  

     

    The usual subject of sound quality discussions is over vague and subjective subtleties like harshness, clarity, warmth, balance, etc.  The sonic differences between a Martin D28 and a Gibson L50 are huge - they dwarf harshness, clarity etc in audibility and in importance to the musical program.   Any audiophile should be able to tell that they're different instruments when hearing them side by side.  Of course you don't know which instrument is which - there's no reason you should, and it doesn't change what I'm saying at all.

     

    Listen to the difference between these two guitars played solo.  Each is ideally suited to the music being played and the way in which it's played.  Neither performance would sound the way the performer or the engineer intended it to sound if played on the other guitar.

     

     

     

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    1 hour ago, bluesman said:

    Wow - I'm sorry you took umbrage at my post. To be honest, I didn't (and still can't) imagine that it brought so negative a response.  To me (and, I bet, to most audiophiles), a recording that masks or alters gross differences in SQ to the point at which they become inaudible is screwed up by any definition.

     

    The differences I'm describing are not so subtle that it takes any knowledge of guitars to hear them, and it doesn't matter whether or not you know which is which.  What matters is that you can hear the differences I'm discussing - they are big and should be clearly audible over any half decent system.  

     

    The usual subject of sound quality discussions is over vague and subjective subtleties like harshness, clarity, warmth, balance, etc.  The sonic differences between a Martin D28 and a Gibson L50 are huge - they dwarf harshness, clarity etc in audibility and in importance to the musical program.   Any audiophile should be able to tell that they're different instruments when hearing them side by side.  Of course you don't know which instrument is which - there's no reason you should, and it doesn't change what I'm saying at all.

     

    Listen to the difference between these two guitars played solo.  Each is ideally suited to the music being played and the way in which it's played.  Neither performance would sound the way the performer or the engineer intended it to sound if played on the other guitar.

     

     

     

    I only said that because, I think you took what I said out context to what I was referring to in my post.  I didn't think I'd have to type out in detail in both my original post and then again in my post 2nd post what I meant. 

     

    First post -  I chuckled because I heard Country music on an Asian reviewed Youtube post.  It  just made my smile, loved the sound.

     

    Second post -  In trying to explain what I meant in the first post, I was referring to that the simple sound of a human voice and guitar is usually very satisfying.  And was just adding that it a simple process to do. One voice, one guitar.  How complicated some recording engineer wants to make it, is up to them.  But I never thought it would have warranted a response. 

     

    I apologize for offending you and any other recording engineers out there.  I shouldn't have posted that hastily remark to you.  I l'll stop posting for awhile and make sure I'm clearer in my respones in the future

     

    @The Computer AudiophileIf you want to edit out my posts, so this stays on topic, you have my wish

     

    Again sorry, @bluesman 

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    19 minutes ago, ShawnC said:

    Again sorry, @bluesman 

    No worries! Your posts are appropriate expressions of a valid point of view, and I appreciate your clarification.  But we see many AS posts about minor distinctions in sound quality (many of whose very existence is in dispute among audiophiles) from people who strangely dismiss major sonic differences that they should be hearing, as demonstrated by those two guitar videos I posted.  I'd almost go so far as to say that anyone who can't hear any difference between them (a Maton concert body flat top and a 17" d'Aquisto archtop) might want to reconsider calling himself or herself an audiophile. 

     

    There's absolutely no reason for anyone to know anything about specific instruments to understand, appreciate, and love music.  But you'd have to screw up recording these guys and their guitars really badly to make them sound alike.  The same is true for voices.  I've heard some recordings of Sarah Vaughn and of Ella Fitzgerald in which it was not easy to identify which of the two was singing.  And their voices both changed a lot as they aged.  Fortunately, there are so many good recordings of each over the years that you can appreciate how their voices matured and became more expressive.  Hearing all of these things and much more is part of the experience of listening to music.

     

    PS:  I"m not a recording engineer - I'm a musician.

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    Quote

    It sounds better than anything from Naim, Dynaudio, Bluesound, Sonos etc... This is a category of device that I absolutely love and of which I consider myself a connoisseur. The McIntosh Rs200 is the new class leader.

     

    In your opinion, does this also apply to the Naim Mu-so 2nd Generation? I would be interested in your feedback as to how they compare.

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    On 11/15/2020 at 9:10 AM, JDJ said:

    Chris, McIntosh RS200 vs KEF LS50 Wireless II ?

    How about LSX?

     

    A year and a half ago I was thinking about getting one of the Dynaudio all in one systems for our small living room, which would provide background for the dining room across the hall. I couldn't find a system to listen to, but listened to a number of competitive systems... and was bemoaning how much space the best sounding systems took up.  32" wide for the Dynaudio 7. That's the whole damn table top! (The RS200 is a pretty big item itself, and looks like it demands space around it.) And then heard a pair of KEF LSX. And I went... now THAT sounds really nice.

     

    Where I was listening, I moved the speakers farther apart, then back together in what was just like an all in one system. Moved them near the wall and back, onto a table top, and realized that the LSX are an excellent alternative to an all in one system. For starters, they don't take up much space compared to most all in one systems - placement has a lot more flexibility than "large mass goes here" all in ones. I think of the LSX as "all in two" - a whole system in two small separable pieces, with minimal demands on table or room space. The only thing I've noticed is, despite having "table" mode, they definitely benefit from a pad underneath each speaker to help decouple them from the table top. 

     

    I hope to find a way to listen to the MacRs200 at some point, but it would have to sound amazingly better to bump the LSX out of my living room, and convince me to give over an entire table top to it versus a small zone on each of two separate tables. We move them to the dining room sideboard for guest dinners, leaves plenty of room still for dishes and a vase of flowers or two in between them. Move them back to the living room after, one on the edge of each of two side tables. Two minutes to set up (and another two to wake up and be ready.) 

     

    Plus DLNA, and Roon compatibility.

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