Spotlight on: KEF MUO Wireless Bluetooth Speakers

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gunmetal 7They were recently awarded ‘Best portable wireless speaker over £200’ at this year’s What HiFi? Awards, but what’s so great about the KEF MUO?

Crafted by industrial designer Ross Lovegrove, the KEF MUO is encased in an aluminium outershell with soft rubber feet that have been optimally positioned to allow the MUO to be placed at the right angle during desktop use. KEF believes that this type of structure is ideal for eliminating unwanted vibrations, paving the way for rich, natural sound.

According to KEF, ordinary portable speakers have small drivers that inevitably sacrifice bass extension and frequency dispersion. To combat this, KEF’S engineers developed a miniature version of the legendary Uni-Q ‘point source’ driver array. As explained on their website, with the central tweeter dome decoupled from the outer cone by a flexible membrane, the whole diaphragm is free to pump out midrange frequencies as powerfully as a conventional driver while allowing the tweeter dome to move independently. This gives MUO the ability to reproduce the higher registers with pinpoint accuracy. The MF cone is profiled to act as a waveguide for the tweeter, further widening the soundstage to fill the room with full-bodied, stunningly clear sound. MUO also features an innovative long throw auxiliary bass radiator that’s been cleverly engineered to maintain its rigidity over the entire surface so as to deliver the tight, clean and generous bass extension you’d expect from a much larger speaker.

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KEF’S  MUO speakers can also be wirelessly synced together via Bluetooth aptX®, allowing you to stream CD-like quality stereo. When placed far apart – for a party or a social gathering -you can select the ‘dual-connect’ party mode to replicate the same full-range response in each speaker. This means that everybody at your event gets the full benefit of the music you’re playing. MUO also has an internal sensor that automatically optimises output to suit its orientation. Simply put, it delivers the same outstanding acoustic depth and definition whether it’s standing upright or horizontally.

Connection to any computer or mobile device is made easy via the 3.Smm Aux input. With NFC Android mobile devices, you can also benefit from the ‘tap-to-pair’ function – just hold the device against MUO and they’re paired ready to stream your music in seconds. Finally, MUO comes with a rechargeable battery that allows up to 12 hours of play time.

Buy the KEF MUO here.

Read What Hi.Fi?’s 5 Star review here.

Check out KEF’s website here.


Technical Specifications:

Model Muo
Drive units 2 x 50mm (2.0in.) full range Uni-Q driver
1 x Auxiliary Bass Radiator (ABR)
Inputs Bluetooth 4.0 with aptX® codec
3.5mm AUX
Micro USB – charging and firmware update
Bluetooth range 10m
Bluetooth capacity 2 devices
Bluetooth memory 8 devices
Battery type Li-ion rechargable battery
Battery charging time 3 hours to fully charge
Battery life 12 hours playback time
Dimension (H x W x D) 80 x 210 x 60 mm (3.1 x 8.3 x 2.3 in.)
Weight 0.8kg (1.8lbs.)
Power input 5V D.C. 2A
App KEF MUO

Must Have Travel Accessories for your Holiday

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Summer has officially arrived! And what’s the best thing about Summer? Holidays of course! Whether it’s a city break, a few days spent by the countryside or a fortnight in the sun, there’s nothing like the prospect of a holiday to get you in a good mood.

Preparing for a holiday? Now, that’s another story. You might start off with good intentions, plan to do your shopping early or vow to pack your suitcase in advance. Then something will come up. You have to work late or you’ve got your hands full minding the kids. And suddenly, that thing that you swore you packed in your suitcase gets left behind.

This year we’ve decided to help. To ensure that you don’t forget the important stuff, we’ve made a list of some trusty travel gadgets that will make your holiday easier and more enjoyable too!

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For guaranteed comfort while travelling, look no further than the trtl sleepscarf. Cleverly designed to look like a scarf while worn, the sleepscarf features an internal support system with patented Z7 tech to offer you more support than any other travel pillow in the world. It also packs to the size of a tablet so it won’t take up much room in  your suitcase. Available in red, grey, or pink.

 

 

GP2C_GoPro_side_heroNo holiday would be complete without a few travel photos to make friends and family go green with envy.  For those serious about photography, the Joby Gorillapod Action Tripod is a must for your holiday checklist. Thanks to the integrated ballhead, taking the perfect shot has never been easier. Use the ballhead with adjustment knob to easily fine tune your composition after you’ve positioned the GorillaPod legs, while the bubble level makes sure that your composition level. Take fun self-timer shots, create awesome timelapse photo series or unique stop motion videos!

 

URBNST-EAR-MIAMI-BLU-O_IMG01_600There’s nothing worse than getting your iPhone or iPad out ready to listen to music or watch a movie and realising that you’ve forgotten to pack your headphones. And while you could just cut your losses and play your device on loudspeaker, your fellow passengers might not be too happy.  Urbanista Miami are comfortable and foldable headphones in a classic design. The large acoustic housing provides for a rich sound experience and keeps distracting noises out, while the frame’s sturdy and foldable flexibility, combined with the soft headband and ear pads, allow the headphones to rest comfortably on your ears. Tucked inside the headphones, a  powerful and well-balanced speaker system  delivers thick bass topped with clear sound across the range, proving you with an immensely enjoyable listening experience.

 

GUM-IPADAIR-DT-ARGRN-O_IMG01_750Keeping the kids entertained during long travel journeys can be a concern for many parents. It’s no surprise then, that toys, books and other portable gadgets are a regular occurrence in mam’s and dad’s suitcases. If you’re planning on letting your kids get their hands on your iPad, you might want to invest in some extra thick protection to make sure that it stays damage-free. For the ultimate in iPad protection, the Drop Tech Series from Gumdrop is a real winner. With multi-layered barriers and an integrated, snap-on screen cover, the Drop Tech Series iPad Case offers rugged, standout durability like no other. Featuring shock absorption, drop protection, and extreme ruggedness, Drop Tech ensures that your iPad is prepared for every adventure!

 

BB-SNK-BLK-O_IMG1_750Travelling can often leave us feeling exhausted, little ones especially, which is why the BubbleBum Sneck is the perfect travel companion for young jet setters. This comfy travel pillow’s micro-bead filled pillow pods and cozy material allow your child to sleep in total comfort, while providing head and neck support. Perfect for car journeys, bus trips or fly-in’s, the Sneck easily attaches to the headrest with a velcro strap so it stays in place and the kids can snooze comfortably. This innovative pillow system also comes with a stash pocket so your child can store their mp3 player or mobile device while not in use.

 

So there you have it, with the help of these trusty travel accessories, you’ll not only be guaranteed a great holiday, but a relaxing one too!

All items featured here are available now from our website! If you are heading off on your holidays soon, enjoy(we’re not jealous at all)!

 

 

 

Speaker Terms- Need To Know

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So you want to buy a speaker but you haven’t a clue where to begin? What’s the best system set up for your living space, what is a soundbar, and what does a 5.1 speaker system refer to? We’ve broken down all of the unnecessary jargon and created a glossary of the most commonly used speaker terms to ensure that your speaker purchasing experience is a painless one.

Absorption: In audio terms, acoustic absorption signals a structure, object, or material, absorbing sound energy when sound waves collide with it, as opposed to reflecting the energy.

Acoustic Power Level The acoustic power level is the total sound energy emitted by a source per unite time. The unit of measurement is the acoustic watt, also known as sound power.

Amplitude Modulation (AM) Amplitude modulation is a method of encoding a signal onto a radio carrier wave by varying its amplitude.

Bottoming

If a speaker is being played beyond its natural volume levels, this can lead to bottoming. Bottoming occurs when the voice coil smacks into the back of the pole plate or the spider hits the top plate, resulting in a very unpleasant sound.

Capacitor A capacitor is a passive electronic component that consists of two metallic plates, separated by dialectic.  It is used to store electric charge.

Class A

The Class A amplifier is the most commonly used power amplifier configuration. In a Class A amplifier, the output device is always “on” so that it provides output current during the complete signal cycle (over a 360 degree interval).

Class B

Class B amplifiers only amplify half of the input wave cycle, and as a result, create a large amount of distortion. However, their efficiency is hugely increased and is much better than Class A. Class B amplifiers are also favoured in battery-operate devices like transistor radios. Class B has a maximum theoretical efficiency of almost 80%. This is because the amplifying element is completely switched off half of the time and so it cannot expend power.

Clipping

Clipping is a type of waveform distortion that occurs when an amplifier is overdriven and attempts to deliver a current or output voltage beyond its maximum capability.

Crossover A crossover is an electronics device that takes a single input signal and creates two or three output signals consisting of separate bands of mid, high, or low range frequencies. These bands of frequencies feed the different speakers in a sound system.

Comb Filtering

Comb Filtering occurs when two identical audio signals are summated together with a small delay between them. The cause of the delay is usually due to a physical separation of operating speakers or drivers that are driven in the same frequency band.

Crossover

A crossover is an electronics device that takes one single input signal and creates two or three different output signals consisting of separated bands of mid, high, and low frequencies. These different bands of frequencies feed the various drivers in a sound system like tweeters, woofers, and subwoofers.

Current

An electrical current can be described as the flow of electric charge.

Decibel

The decibel (dB) is the unit used to measure the intensity of sound.

Diffraction

Diffraction refers to the bending of sound waves around objects, and the re-radiation of energy through an opening.  Diffraction is the reason that we can hear sound around corners and behind walls.

Diffusion

In acoustics terms, diffusion is the power at which sound is spread evenly throughout a given environment.

Dynamic Range

Dynamic range is the difference in decibels between the overload level and the lowest acceptable signal level in a system or transducer.

Efficiency

Efficiency, not to be confused with sensitivity, is the percentage of electrical power converted by the loudspeaker into acoustical power.

Frequency

Frequency is classified as a periodic vibration whose frequency is audible to the average human. It is measured in Hertz(Hz) and is recognised as the property of sound that most determines pitch.

Frequency Modulation

Frequency Modulation is the process whereby the frequency of a carrier wave changes in according to the intensity of the signal. While this is occurring, the amplitude and phase of the carrier wave remain constant.

Frequency Response

Frequency response is the quantitative measure of the output spectrum of a system or device in response to a stimulus, and is used to characterise the dynamics of the system. It is a measure of the magnitude and phase of the output as a function of frequency, in comparison to the output.

Harmonic

A harmonic is a signal or a wave whose frequency is an integral multiple (1,2,3,4, etc.) of the fundamental frequency.

Hertz(Hz)

The standard unit used to measure frequency that equates to one cycle per second.

 IMG

IMG, which stands for “Injected Molded Graphite”, is a type of material used for speaker cones.

Impedence

Impedence is the measure of the opposition that a circuit presents to a current when a voltage is applied.

Inductor

An inductor is a component in an electric or electronic current which possessed inductance i.e. a coil of wire.

Loudness Level

Loudness level is defined as the sound pressure level of a 1000Hz tone that is perceived to be as loud as the sound being measured.

Modulation

Modulation is the process of varying an electric signal by superimposing the signal’s characteristics onto a carrier wave so that it carries the information contained in the signal.

Octave

Octave is the interval between one musical pitch and another with half or double of its frequency.

Ohm’s Law

Ohm’s Law concerns the relationship between the voltage and current in an ideal conductor. This relationship states that the potential difference (voltage) across an ideal conductor is proportional to the current running through it. The constant of proportionality is referred to as the “resistance”, R.

Power

Power is the rate at which electrical energy is transferred from an audio amplifier to a loud speaker. It is measured in watts.

Power response

Power response is the variation of sound power as a function of frequency.

Reflection (Surfaces)

This describes hard surfaces which do not permit sound to penetrate the surface. In this instance, nearly all energy is reflected back towards the source.

 Resistance

Resistance is the opposition to current flow. It reduces the number of electrons flowing through the conductor. In other words, the higher the resistance, the less current flow in the conductor. The Ohm is the unit used to measure resistance.

Reverberation

Reverberation is the collection of reflected sounds from an enclosed space, such as an auditorium.

Sensitivity

Sensitivity measures the amount of sound output derived from a speaker with one watt of power input from an amplifier.

Sound

Sound can be described as vibrations that travel through the air or another medium which become audible once they reach the human ear.

Sound Intensity

Sound Intensity is the sound power per unit area.

Soundbar

A soundbar is a special loudspeaker enclosure that creates a reasonable stereo effect from a single cabinet. They are much wider than they are tall, partly for acoustic reasons, but also so that they can be mounted above or below a display device eg: under a television or above a computer monitor.

Subwoofer

A subwoofer is a complete loudspeaker which is dedicated to the reproduction of low pitched audio frequencies known as “bass”. The typical frequency range for a subwoofer is 20-200 Hz for consumer products, below 100 Hz for professional live sound, and below 80 Hz in THX-approved systems.  Subwoofers are intended to heighten the low frequency range of loudspeakers covering higher frequency bands.

Sound Power Level

Sound pressure level is expressed in decibels (dB) and is a measure of sound pressure relative to the hearing threshold.

THX

THX is a high fidelity audio/visual reproduction standard for home theatres, movie theatres, gaming consoles, computer speakers, screening rooms, and car audio systems. It was implemented by Lucasfilm Ltd. to ensure that the sound you hear is almost identical to how it was produced in the studio.

Tweeter

Tweeter refers to the driver that produces high-frequency sounds in a speaker system.

2.1 Speaker System

A 2.1 speaker system combines two speakers and one subwoofer. This simple setup is ideal for enjoying music and movies while providing better sound quality than most built in television speakers, but with less wiring and fewer speakers than a 5.1 speaker system. A 2.1 speaker system is ideal for smaller spaces such as single rooms or apartments.

5.1 Speaker System

A 5.1 Speaker System is made up of left and right speakers, two rear surround channel speakers and one centre channel speaker to make a total of five main speakers and one subwoofer. A 5.1 speaker system is a slightly more complicated setup than a 2.1 speaker system, but the sound quality is superior as a result of the addition of the rear surround speakers. A 5.1 speaker setup is best suited to average-sized rooms and is ideal for those looking to create a home theatre system on a budget.

7.1 Speaker system

A 7.1 speaker system adds to additional back surround channels to a 5.1 setup. A 7.1 surround sound systems delivers more realistic and in depth sound thanks to the two extra back surround speakers. The overall result is a fuller and more immersive sound experience, suitable for larger home-theatre rooms.

Notice any that we’ve missed? Let us know in the comments!

 

5 tech-savvy Xmas gifts for your…brother

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You’ve got your mam’s present sorted, and your dad’s. So now, what do you get that brother of yours who you pretend gets on your nerves, but deep down you really love?

Fear not, we’re here to help! If there’s one thing that guys love, it’s their gadgets. We’ve put together a list of five great Christmas gifts, ideal for any tech-loving brother of yours!

Yurbuds Ironman Inspire Performance Fit earphones- Cobalt Blue

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Is your brother sports mad? If so, then he’ll love these sport performance earphones from Yurbud. Developed by athletes for athletes, Yurbuds feature special twistlock technology and a flexsoft comfort fit so they won’t ever hurt your ears or fall out.Their ergonomic design is also sweat and water-resistant, as well as allowing ambient noise so that you can remain aware of your surroundings.

 

 

Urban Armor Gear iPhone 6 Composite case Slate/Black

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Has your brother recently bought an iPhone 6? If he has, then the last thing he’d want would be for it to get damaged, or worse, bent. With this composite case from Urban Armor, that certainly won’t happen. This case has a hard outer shell to protect against scratches and a soft inner core to ensure a snug fit for your phone. It also comes with a free HD screen guard for even more added protection.

 

 

Gumdrop Drop Tech Series Protective Case for iPad Air – Black/Red

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Is your brother constantly worried about dropping his iPad ? Well, not anymore. If you’re looking for the most durable, yet affordable protection for the iPad Air, you’ve found it in the Drop Tech Series Case for the iPad Air. Shock absorption, drop protection, extreme ruggedness and hard-core readiness for all adventures, the Drop Tech Series Case for the iPad Air specifically conforms to the shape of the iPad Air and offers multiple layers of protection.

 

Joby Gorillapod Action Tripod with Mount for GoPro- Black/Red

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Does your brother fancy himself as a bit of an action photographer? Is his GoPro camera constantly by his side wherever he goes? If the answer is ‘yes’, then the Joby Gorillapod action tripod for GoPro is the perfect gift for him. Thanks to the ballhead, taking the perfect shot has never been easier.Use the ballhead with adjustment knob to easily fine tune your composition after you’ve positioned the GorillaPod legs. Use the bubble level to ensure your composition is level, especially handy since most action cameras don’t have an LCD preview screen. Take fun self-timer shots, create amazing  timelapse photo series or incredible stop motion videos!

Klipsch KG-200 Pro Audio Wired Gaming Set

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If your brother is an avid gamer then he will love the KG-200 Pro Audio Wired Gaming Set from Klipsch. Designed for use with PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Xbox One* (3rd party adapter required) and PCs, the wired KG-200 provides listeners with athletic mesh ear pads for long-term wear, comfort and breathability while still providing superior levels of noise isolation. Equipped with 40mm precision-tuned drivers and four selectable EQ presets (Fidelity, Combat, Stealth and Sport), the headset delivers optimized sound for every game type. Large, easily-accessible controls are located on the right earcup for controlling EQ, chat volume, game volume and mic monitor.

All products are available now on our website, or by clicking the relevant images above. Enjoy!

 

Questions to Ask Yourself Before You Buy Headphones:

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1. Do I prefer in-ear or over-ear headphones?

This is really a case of what feels most comfortable for you. In addition to choosing between these two, you can also choose HOW they fit into the ear. For example, you can get a basic cable with an earbud on it, or you can choose an earpiece that hooks over the back of the ear. Over-ear headphones come in various sizes- some barely cover the ear itself, whilst others are as big and cosy as a pair of ear muffs!

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2. Do I need them to be portable?

If you will be wearing them on your daily commute or at the gym, while jogging in the park or waiting around to catch a flight, then the answer is most definitely yes! Choose lightweight headphones with a robust carrying case. You can find folding headphones for extra convenience, which is great if you like over-ear headphones but need them to be small enough to carry around. If however, you want to keep them by your bed-side to lull yourself to sleep with your favourite music, or to have them in the living room next to your hi-fi system, then the answer is probably no, which gives you the option of choosing heavier or bulkier headphones if you wish.

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3. What conditions will I be using them in?

If you will be wearing the headphones outdoors in all weather, while camping or at the beach, you need to choose headphones that can best withstand these conditions. Some headphones will have thicker or tangle-proof cords, larger buttons, waterproof features etc. to help you overcome various issues.

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4. What devices will they need to be compatible with?

You can get headphones with a mic and controls compatible with your android or Apple devices. If you have different devices at your disposal, think about which ones you want your headphones to be fully compatible with. So this will most likely be whichever device you use the most, be it your iPad, Android smartphone or whatever.

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5. Which is more important to me – design or sound quality?

It’s difficult, but certainly not impossible to find it all in one perfect product – exceptional sound quality together with a flawless and beautiful design. Besides, people have different tastes when it comes to how headphones look and nobody wants to use a product that they think is ugly, do they? So do your homework by reading reviews that inform you about both aspects. Do the headphones last well? What is the sound like? Are they the ultimate fashion accessory? Then make your buying decision based on what matters most to you.

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http://www.soundzdirect.com/headphone-category.html

Klipsch X11i in Stock Now!

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Now in stock! We’re delighted to announce that we now have the Klipsch X11i in stock.

As one of the world’s smallest and lightest headphones, the luxurious Klipsch X11i is the best choice of premium in-ear headphone that you can find.

Each packet includes a pair of superior audiophile headphones with tangle-free cords, a three-button remote for control over music and calls, and patented oval ear tips in multiples sizes to ensure maximum noise isolation and comfort. In addition to the extra ear tips, other accessories include a leather carry case, airline adapter, 3.5mm-6.3mm adapter and a clothing clip. Everything you need to enjoy these premium headphones on the go. Enjoy!

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