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Wireless Speaker Advice
Old 04-23-2013, 03:57 PM   #1
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Wireless Speaker Advice

My DW has an Apple iMac computer and would like to broadcast music wirelessly to a speaker or speakers in various locations around the house. The speakers I've seen are bluetooth and I suspect that wouldn't have the necessary range. Has anyone done something like this?
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Old 04-23-2013, 04:07 PM   #2
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Look for anything with the word airplay in it.
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Old 04-23-2013, 04:33 PM   #3
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Might consider one or two of these; https://jawbone.com/speakers
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Old 04-23-2013, 05:09 PM   #4
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Might consider one or two of these; https://jawbone.com/speakers
+1 small size BIG sound
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Old 04-23-2013, 05:16 PM   #5
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Might consider one or two of these; https://jawbone.com/speakers
These appear to be Bluetooth. Would that reach all over a 3000 Square foot house like the WiFi does?
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Old 04-23-2013, 06:30 PM   #6
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These appear to be Bluetooth. Would that reach all over a 3000 Square foot house like the WiFi does?
I have the small one and carry it to the room I am in. We have a two story 2,200 sq. ft house and it reaches all rooms. YMMV
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Old 04-23-2013, 06:44 PM   #7
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These appear to be Bluetooth. Would that reach all over a 3000 Square foot house like the WiFi does?
Well, there are three classes of Bluetooth. A Class I bluetooth gadget will have a range of 100 meters, almost 400 feet, with it's 500 milliwatt transmitter. A Class 2 has a 2.5 milliwatt transmitter and a range of about 10 meters, and a Class 3 has a 1 milliwatt transmitter and a range of a meter (good enough for a phone earpiece).

The built-in stuff in many laptops is Class 2. There are some fairly cheap USB plug-in Bluetooth modules that are Class 1. The Jawbone Jambox manual gives a range of 33 feet.

http://content.jawbone.com/static/ww...box-manual.pdf
Quote:
Your JAMBOX can wirelessly stream audio from any Bluetooth device within 33 feet. Just follow the steps on the next page.
You might be able to stretch this a bit with a Class 1 bluetooth module and it's better antenna installed on the computer.
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Old 04-23-2013, 07:10 PM   #8
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You might be able to stretch this a bit with a Class 1 bluetooth module and it's better antenna installed on the computer.
I play from an I-Phone or I-Pad. Not sure what class modules are in those.
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Old 04-23-2013, 07:42 PM   #9
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Well, there are three classes of Bluetooth. A Class I bluetooth gadget will have a range of 100 meters, almost 400 feet, with it's 500 milliwatt transmitter. A Class 2 has a 2.5 milliwatt transmitter and a range of about 10 meters, and a Class 3 has a 1 milliwatt transmitter and a range of a meter (good enough for a phone earpiece).

The built-in stuff in many laptops is Class 2. There are some fairly cheap USB plug-in Bluetooth modules that are Class 1. The Jawbone Jambox manual gives a range of 33 feet. You might be able to stretch this a bit with a Class 1 bluetooth module and it's better antenna installed on the computer.
Good info. Thanks. So for 100m range, do both devices have to be Class 1?
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Old 04-24-2013, 05:59 AM   #10
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It appears the jawbone speakers are battery operated only, with a battery life of 10-15 hours. If I was putting in wireless home speakers, I'd want 120V so I could use them anytime. I can't imagine having to look after recharging speaker batteries at home. YMMV
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Old 04-24-2013, 07:11 AM   #11
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It appears the jawbone speakers are battery operated only, with a battery life of 10-15 hours. If I was putting in wireless home speakers, I'd want 120V so I could use them anytime. I can't imagine having to look after recharging speaker batteries at home. YMMV

But if you have to plug them in, they are not truly wireless.

If you are looking at speakers you plug in, I have three Sonus speakers in my house (Play:3, Play:5 and Connnect:Amp), two inside and one outside on the deck... I love them, but they are pricey.
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Old 04-24-2013, 07:22 AM   #12
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Highly recommend the Sonos system.
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Old 04-24-2013, 09:07 AM   #13
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OP here. So it looks like maybe the Bluetooth on the iMac may have a greater range than I thought. I'd be fine with using rechargeable batteries to get the added portability. I just need to find someone to buy the Jawbone from that will accept its return if it doesn't work out.

Thanks for the advice and comments.
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Old 04-24-2013, 09:11 AM   #14
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OP here. So it looks like maybe the Bluetooth on the iMac may have a greater range than I thought. I'd be fine with using rechargeable batteries to get the added portability. I just need to find someone to buy the Jawbone from that will accept its return if it doesn't work out.

Thanks for the advice and comments.
http://www.walmart.com/ip/Jambox-by-...phone/17038238
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Old 04-24-2013, 10:14 AM   #15
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That SONOS is incredible! We saw it in action at my sister's house and it is amazing. They can play stuff from their home music library, Pandora, and Spotify, all operated from a remote app on the iphones. Very very cool. I was sorely tempted to get one for our house after toying with it.
I'm still holding out, though, because...we're cheap.
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Old 04-24-2013, 10:40 AM   #16
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Even cheaper on Amazon.
Amazon.com: Jawbone JAMBOX Wireless Bluetooth Speaker - Black Diamond - Retail Packaging: Cell Phones & Accessories
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Old 04-24-2013, 11:34 AM   #17
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But if you have to plug them in, they are not truly wireless.

If you are looking at speakers you plug in, I have three Sonus speakers in my house (Play:3, Play:5 and Connnect:Amp), two inside and one outside on the deck... I love them, but they are pricey.
As you know, wireless in terms of audio source, the OP did say "to broadcast music wirelessly to a speaker or speakers in various locations around the house. I can't imagine using 10-15 hour battery operated wireless speakers around the house, and just wanted to make sure the OP noticed that feature.

And interesting the alternative link you provide was for 120V Sonus speakers that are described as "the wireless HiFi system." Truly wireless?
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Old 04-24-2013, 12:19 PM   #18
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Good info. Thanks. So for 100m range, do both devices have to be Class 1?
Generally, yes. I just set up DD's steno machine with Class 1 Bluetooth on both the machine and her laptop. That lets her machine talk with the laptop for live transcriptions (the laptop has software that does 'steno' to English translation, and then broadcasts the translation over WiFi to iPads and such). With the Class 1 link, she can carry the machine pretty much anywhere in a courtroom or chambers and keep the live feed running.
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Old 04-24-2013, 01:36 PM   #19
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That SONOS is incredible! We saw it in action at my sister's house and it is amazing. They can play stuff from their home music library, Pandora, and Spotify, all operated from a remote app on the iphones. Very very cool. I was sorely tempted to get one for our house after toying with it.
I'm still holding out, though, because...we're cheap.
I think the LBYM and potentially better way to do this is with separate components.

Pick out some speakers you like, buy a good quality, yet cheap amp like this ($25):

Lepai LP-2020A+ Tripath Class-T Hi-Fi Audio Amp w/Power Supp 310-300

or this ($73):

Dayton Audio DTA-100a Class-T Digital Amplifier 50 WPC Provides Power To Computer Speakers, Bookshelf Speakers, Headphones, And More! 300-383


and use an older, cast-off laptop as the source. The laptop can be set up to easily access Pandora, iTunes or other music library player.

Add an inexpensive D/A converter if you want better sound than comes out out of the laptop headphone jack.

Behringer UCA202 2-In/2-Out USB Audio Interface S/PDIF Out 248-599

I just purchased one each of those two amps listed above. One for the bedroom stereo, and one to drive some better speakers for the kitchen TV. These are 'switching' amplifiers and are very efficient, so you get a lot of power in a very small package.

-ERD50
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Old 01-28-2015, 01:25 PM   #20
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It's been two years, but I'd like to thank ERD50 for suggesting small class-T amps.
I've assembled a really good sounding not too expensive audio for my computer.
BestBuy had Polk AudoT15 speakers on sale for $49 on Black Friday and to drive these I bought TPA3116 based amp (newer chip design than 2020) from China for $23.
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