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Will HomePod 'kill' BeoPlay?

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benoit
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benoit posted on Tue, Jan 23 2018 6:23 PM

Hi,

With HomePod coming February 9th, will BeoPlay be that successful? Will they still manage to sell the non battery powered BeoPlay audio speakers (except A9) ? I think that even BeoSound 1 and 2 could highly suffer... I guess that soon we will learn if HomePod is far superior than BeoPlay (audio quality speaking) and maybe not far from BeoSounds for a much much lower price. And I don't speak about the wireless connectivity dropouts that happen...

What do you think?

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Mikipidia
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Wow, that almost read like b&o doesn’t yet know people leave reviews online. Besides that though, i still can’t imagine wanting to have our corporate overlords listening in on private conversations which they share with third parties. They listen to more than just hey siri/google/alexa, they pick up more info from regular conversations too for the purpouses of ad shaping. So with that in mind i’d rather have a somewhat “dumb” speaker or nothing at all Stick out tongue

New: Beolab 50's, Beolab 18's, Beolab 17's, Beovision eclipse, Beosound 9000 mk3, Beosound 1 Bronze edition, Beoplay M3, Beoplay A1.

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Old: Beolab 1's, beolab 2, beovision 10-46, overture 2300, beolab 8000's, beolab 4000's, beovision avant 32" etc. etc.

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Millemissen
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If you want the B&O functionallity in that bathroom, go for the M3 (unless you have a huge bathroom).

If you just want AP2 support, try any other AP2 compatiple speaker - try them all ;-)) and choose the one that suits you best.

MM

There is a tv - and there is a BV.

pauliander
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Jeff I agree with you on the importance of the design element. Current line-up of speakers are far away from the Jensen/Lewis period. The only recent speakers which fit my taste are the BL17, the other new ones I don’t really like from a design perspective. Unfortunately the BL17 are quite big considering their purpose and comparing for instance with BL3 (invented 15y earlier). Today I cannot see why I have to replace my BL5 and Pentas.. Unsure
Hiort
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Hiort replied on Tue, Jun 11 2019 7:18 AM

Bazzinga:

i need a speaker in my bedroom and bathroom. Did you check the homepod? I see that you have m3 and m5. How does these compare to homepod? Also is there a big difference in sound between m3 and m5? Is there any sense in buying m5 in a small bathroom where it will stand near the wall? Won't it be overkill? Thanks Hiort!

I had only a brief listen to Homepod, so I cannot give any real impressions.

For a small bathroom M3 will be great. That is where I have my M3 and its absolutely sufficient. As you say, M5 will be overkill.

 

 

 

 

Livingroom: BL3, BL11, BV11-46 Kitchen: Beosound 1 GVA, Beocom 2 Bathroom: M3 Library: A6, Beocom 6000 Bedroom: M5 Office: Beocom 2 Travel: Beoplay E8 2.0, Beoplay P2

Bazzinga
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Bazzinga replied on Tue, Jun 11 2019 11:33 AM

Great! As I know m3 has a directional, not 360 sound. If it won't target my sink in the bathroom and a shower will it still sound full and great?

benoit
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benoit replied on Tue, Jun 11 2019 12:57 PM

BeoMatthew:

Frankly the sound is very poor in my opinion. I don't think the product is doing well (in Apple terms of course). The M3 is a better performer and the M5 is actually an excellent sound if you're not close to it. I have one on top of a cabinet and it "fills the room" beautifully. I agree if you're too close to it the bass feels too strong. 

I don't agree at all. I think the HomePod has a rich sound. Maybe a bit too much bass but it's really good and quite roomfilling.

I replaced my BS2 (I lost most of my faith in B&O) with a HomePod and I don't regret. I admit that the HomePod is not as good but not far either. And no software or wifi problems!

Look the reviews : https://www.whathifi.com/apple/homepod/review

https://www.theverge.com/2018/2/6/16976906/apple-homepod-review-smart-speaker

For M3 : https://www.theverge.com/2018/1/24/16927922/bo-play-beoplay-m3-wireless-speaker-airplay-cast-review

trackbeo
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benoit:
I replaced my BS2 (I lost most of my faith in B&O) with a HomePod and I don't regret. I admit that the HomePod is not as good but not far either. And no software or wifi problems!
I wish!  The "Everybody Play" mode, where you can (supposedly) activate peer-to-peer AirPlay when taking the HomePod out of your own network to somewhere else, has a basic design flaw.  The sound is decent enough -- for a little while, until it disconnects from the player!  

More generally, HomePod is not a generic AirPlay speaker, and nobody should buy it expecting such.  First off, out of the box it's a brick.  You *must* activate it by creating an AppleID, and *verifying* yourself with your phone # for 2-factor authentication, because the default mode of operation uses Siri and accesses your Home, with all the privacy restrictions that Apple (rightfully) built in.  There's no way to configure it for everybody-play anonymous operation, or even generic non-Siri operation on your own WiFi network, without immersing yourself in Apple credentialling. 

Beyond setup, the basic flaw in "Everybody Play" mode is that Bluetooth is used to establish the WiFi link.  So you must have your player within BT range, not just 802.11 range as you would in old-fashioned AirPlay.  (Presumably to make it more transparent and not require a network/speaker "Chooser" app? And require proximity so the whole neighborhood can't blast your speaker.)  But once the link is established, it doesn't stay up "forever".  Example: run iTunes on a Mac, near enough to drive the BT, and (minor software glitch) you have to choose the HomePod as the System sound output, you cannot just choose it from within iTunes.  But having done so, it shows up in iTunes and works fine including control driven by the HomePod.  But if you pause iTunes by tapping the top of the speaker, go away for some minutes, then tap again to un-pause, it does... nothing.  The HomePod has been disconnected from the Mac in the interim!  So you must go back over to the Mac, choose the speaker in System Preferences/Sound again, and start playing again.  This might be OK for a multi-person "party jukebox" but is not very good as an always-on background music player.

I'll try updating the HomePod software (3 GigaBytes!) when I can take it back to the house where it was originally configured and where a registered, verified, Apple-head loaned me their iPhone to do it.  After that, I'll test the everybody-play mode again, though I'm not hopeful given the basic flaw.  Then I'll take it back over and switch it to single-network mode, to check long-term connection without BT and AirPlay (1) backward compatibility at my house again.  More later...

EDIT (later): Updating the software caused the Homepod not to work *at all* in "Everybody Play" mode!  One user (MacOS 10.12.6) it asked for an AirPlay code, though no code was set, and another user (OS 10.14.5) it didn't even show up in System Preferences/Sound/Output list.  By contrast, a late-model AirPort Express shows up and AirPlays just fine for both users (on the same network of course).  Back to my Apple-head friend to switch it into single-network mode.  More later...

Bazzinga
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wow, so much problems with this thing! With which speaker(from B&O or not) would you consider to replace the homepod if you will?

Bazzinga
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Wow, sorry to hear that.. And what made you lost the faith in B&O? Just the homepod?
P.S. enjoying my beosound 2 though :/

Jaffrey2230
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I have 2X BeoPlay A9 and 3x HomePods and honestly HomePods set up as a stereo pair easily holds it's own vs a single A9. However, the A9s with strong wifi (I use Google wifi mesh) is a flawless AirPlay 2 speaker. I am easily able to ask Siri to route audio from a HomePod to A9.

Beolab (8000 x 2, 2 x 1, 6000 x 4), Beoplay (A9, P6, H9 3rd Gen)

Stan
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Stan replied on Tue, Jun 11 2019 3:12 PM

Bazzinga:

Great! As I know m3 has a directional, not 360 sound. If it won't target my sink in the bathroom and a shower will it still sound full and great?

I have an M3 in a small-ish bathroom (by US standards - maybe 3m x 5m-ish), and it's directional nature doesn't bother me.  There are so many hard surfaces in my bathroom (tile floor, tile on some of the walls) that the sound bounces all over the room anyway.  In this environment, fidelity really only matters at low volumes which can't be heard well over the running water, shower, electric razor, etc.  I have mine pointed toward my sink/vanity and away from the shower.  I do need to turn it up quite loud to hear it in the shower so I don't do this when I get up before the family.  Then again, the shower is quite loud so I think I'd have this problem even if it was pointed directly at the shower.

I did briefly consider an M5 (onmi-directional and spotify connect), but it really would have been overkill, and I can use googlecast for spotify and that works fine so far.

benoit
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benoit replied on Tue, Jun 11 2019 3:15 PM

Bazzinga:

Wow, sorry to hear that.. And what made you lost the faith in B&O? Just the homepod?
P.S. enjoying my beosound 2 though :/

I lost faith in B&O after many problems with my dealer (he closed since)... He wasn't at all helpfull, neither polite, when I had to fix a CD player or the sliding doors or the BS3 touch panel... The Beolit 17 had battery problems, same with A2...  After so many problems with B&O I did a trial with the HomePod. It is very good sounding in my 30 sqm living room. For a big bathroom (French standarts; 12sqm) I find it a bit overkill. I still like very much B&O's design and sound but I cannot imagine spending so much anymore if the devices are not reliable and have no perfect aftersales service. The BS2 started sometimes with a very very high volume and was loosing network (I had to unplug it all the time) while the HomePod connected to the same router is always working fluently (I didn't know the everybody's mode so I din't  experience it and I cannot tell anything).

Jaffrey2230 seems to agree with me about the sound quality of the HomePods Smile

benoit
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benoit replied on Tue, Jun 11 2019 3:26 PM

Bazzinga:

wow, so much problems with this thing! With which speaker(from B&O or not) would you consider to replace the homepod if you will?

I will in the next months have a look to the B&W Formation Wedge which seems to be a good choice. I have to listen to it.

https://www.whathifi.com/reviews/bandw-formation-wedge

Bazzinga
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wow! I actually feel a bit humiliated because I have a9 mk2 Big Smile It really sounds near to the a9? I just can't imagine it .. Or the a9 is better on 50%+ volume ?

benoit
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benoit replied on Tue, Jun 11 2019 4:29 PM

A9 gets far far much louder.

Bazzinga
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oh... feel sorry for you :C As for now, didn't have any problems with  beosound 2 and a9 and I hope it won't show up... But I feel you! B&O products are really expensive so there are higher demands for them.

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