The best budget and premium speakers

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Kob Monney
2023-03-15 07:13:17

Denon Home 150

Best compact Bluetooth speaker

Denon’s Home range of wireless speakers has been a challenger to Sonos in the home speaker market, and one advantage it has had over its rival is that its speakers support Bluetooth. The Denon Home 150 is the smallest speaker in the range, and also has smarts in the form of Alexa and Google Assistant.

These smarts aren’t available in its Bluetooth mode, unlike the B&O A1 2nd Gen that features on this list, but it’s a well-appointed speaker in terms of features. Along with Bluetooth 4.2 support, there’s Wi-Fi and the HEOS app that offers access to music streaming services such as Amazon Music, Deezer, Tidal and Napster. There’s also Hi-res audio as the Home 150 can play 192kHz/24-bit FLAC, WAV, ALAC and DSD 2.8/5.6MHz through the USB port on its rear.

The design is not the most eye-grabbing with its fabric wrapping, but the Home 150 doesn’t appear interested in grabbing the limelight. On top is a touch panel made from hardened glass, with proximity sensors that light up the panel when we hover our hands over the speaker. It’s a nice, convenient means of interacting with the speaker itself.

It has a compact footprint, around the same size as the Sonos One, and it features more physical connections with an Ethernet, USB and auxiliary ports on its rear.

In terms of its sound quality the Home 150 lacks the balance and neutrality of the Sonos One with its richer, warmer presentation. We found voices to be well articulated, capturing enough detail to describe the character of a singer’s voice, and there’s decent dynamism too. Treble does sound a little rolled off, but there’s more bass here than there is on the Sonos and it’s more controlled than it is on Marshall’s Uxbridge speaker, though the integration between the mid-range and bass could be slightly clearer to our ears.

With the Sonos Era 100 on the way, the Denon has a new rival to compete against, and we’ll be looking to see how well it fares against the upcoming speaker.

Reviewer: Kob Monney
Full Review: Denon Home 150

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