If you love Apple products, the best type of wireless speaker for your home is an AirPlay speaker. You can stream music over Wi-Fi to an AirPlay speaker using any iOS device, or from a computer that has iTunes installed. iOS owners can also use a SONOS speaker or Bluetooth speaker, but a speaker that’s specifically designed to work with AirPlay has a couple of key benefits. For one thing, AirPlay speakers can more easily transmit to multiple audio systems, at least compared to Bluetooth systems. Another key benefit is that AirPlay speakers don’t compress audio the way that Bluetooth speakers might. Opting for AirPlay over SONOS means that you have a wider array of speaker styles and sizes to choose from, made by a variety of different companies. This means you can pick a speaker that fits the unique decor or special sound needs for each individual room in your house. If you’re in the market for an AirPlay speaker (or two), we’ve compiled a list of the best AirPlay speakers currently on sale. Read on to see which speakers get our recommendation.
1. Philips AD7000W/37 Fidelio SoundAvia Wireless Speaker with AirPlay
The Fidelio SoundAvia AirPlay speaker from Philips is a nice option for consumers who are looking for an AirPlay speaker at a relatively low price. It has a compact design, but still offers a surprisingly rich bass performance for such a small package. You can stream music over Wi-Fi from your iOS device or computer, or opt for the aux-in jack. The black speaker looks great with an all-black media center, but its also dark enough to fit in with the decor in pretty much any room of the house. If you are looking for a permanent, wired sound solution, this is a good choice. However, it’s not a great choice for those looking for portable AirPlay speakers, or those who want a more visually arresting design look. You can check out other wireless speakers from Philips here.
Price: $86.99 (57 percent off MSRP)
- Compact design
- One year warranty
- Less expensive than some other AirPlay speakers on the market
- 10 watts RMS total output power
- Philips Fidelio app gives you access to over 7,000 free Internet radio stations
- Some may want a speaker with a bit more personality in its design
- Other shoppers may prefer a speaker with a longer warranty window
Find more Philips AD7000W/37 Fidelio SoundAvia Wireless Speaker with AirPlay information and reviews here.
2. Harman Kardon Aura Black Wireless Stereo Speaker System
Harman Kardon is one of the most respected names in home audio. The sound quality of this speaker is great, and user reviews indicate this speaker offers plenty of bass. The elegant, unusual design of this speaker makes it a great conversation piece. But the design is more than just an aesthetic choice: the speaker is designed to produce omni-directional, room-filling sound. This speaker boasts six 1.5-inch transducers, along with a 4.5-inch subwoofer.
Price: $399.95 new (17 percent off), $299.95 recertified
Learn more about this speaker in the video above.
- Great for AirPlay, but also plays nice with Windows and Android devices
- Omni-directional sound
- Elegant design
- Limited color options
- Some users find the H/K remote control app to be limited, confusing
3. Polk Audio AM6119-A Wireless Woodbourne Speaker
On the lookout for a speaker with wood accents? Look no further. This cool speaker from Polk will appeal to those who dislike the black plastic construction of so many speakers on the market. This AirPlay speaker has a 180 Watt RMS 4-channel amplifier. While the construction is great, there are a few potential drawbacks to be aware of. Some users have found the AirPlay connection spotty, and dislike how AirPlay is terminated, rather than paused, when a call comes in. In addition, the “auto sleep” function cannot be disabled or changed by the consumer, which may be a minor annoyance for some. If the price isn’t right, you can check out other Polk speakers here.
Price: $341.99 (51 percent off MSRP)
Learn more about this Polk speaker in the video above.
- Elegant, minimalist controls
- Funky wood design
- Loud enough to be used for music, or as the sound source for your TV
- Slender enough to fit on a bookshelf
- Remote control requires batteries
- Some users have found AirPlay connection spotty
- Some users report issues with updating firmware
4. Bowers & Wilkins A7 Hi-Fi Wireless Music System With AirPlay
This AirPlay system contains five dedicated audiophile Class D amplifiers, and a six inch subwoofer. This speaker support both 802.11G wi-fi and an ethernet port for playing your music. Like all the other wireless speakers on this list, this AirPlay speaker can be used with a free companion app that’s available on the App Store. If you are looking for a single speaker that has the sound of several different speakers, this is an option to put at the top of your list. Need to see other options? View other Bowers & Wilkins speakers and headphones here.
Check out a review of this speaker in the video above.
- Covered by a two-year warranty
- 6-inch Kevlar-reinforced subwoofer
- Some may want a speaker with a longer warranty period
- Some users have experienced issues with skipping sound, depending on location in house
- Some users have reported playback issues after a 2015 firmware update
Find more Bowers & Wilkins A7 Hi-Fi Wireless Music System with AirPlay information and reviews here.
5. Moshi Spatia Wireless AirPlay Speaker
The Spatia is a new release from Moshi. This brand-new speaker boasts a cool design, and excellent sound quality. The folks at Moshi were nice enough to send us a demo unit of this speaker to try for a week. We held an informal listening party with some local musicians, who shared their thoughts about this AirPlay speaker’s sound quality.
We thought the default sound settings were great, very crisp and well-balanced, though our panel of listeners did find the bass lacking in some songs. But with a few tweaks of the settings using the companion app, the bass was perfect.
This speaker has two 1-inch silk dome tweeters, two 2.75-inch mid-range drivers, and one 4-inch downward firing subwoofer. The audio system employs two Class-D amplifiers to drive the high/mid frequencies and low frequencies separately. This speaker looks cool, and sounds great. We had to send our sample unit back to Moshi, but I’m already thinking about purchasing a Spatia speaker of my own.
Get a closer look at this new-for-2015 speaker in the video above.
- Cool design
- Crisp, clear sound
- Decent AirPlay playing range from Wi-Fi hub
- Included suite of ambient sounds is cool, but may not be of use to all listeners
- Those looking for omni-directional sound may prefer another unit
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