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Bose SoundLink Air Digital Music System Review

In theory the Bose SoundLink Air Digital Music System is portable, although in this respect the package falls at the first hurdle because a battery is not included. It is in fact an optional extra that will cost you an additional $90 so if you wish to try out the rechargeable lithium-ion battery, you need the money for it. As it is, the system costs $350 and is an AirPlay version of Bose’s SoundDock speaker docks, so with or without the battery, it does not come cheap. This is a pity because the power brick is fairly cumbersome and since it measures 3x3x2 inches and weighs 4.7 pounds, it does detract from the system’s portable nature and takes up way too much space on the outlet when plugged in.

However it would be unfair to focus on this glaring flaw as the music system is actually rather good in its own right. If you can afford it you will find that it is very good at what it does and if you do not even need it to be portable you are unlikely to have any complaints about it. The design is deceptively simple and you may not immediately realise that it does indeed have buttons on it as they blend in quite well. Look closely and you will see a pair of volume buttons on the side, while a single LED at the top will signify whether it is connected to your Wi-Fi network or not.

There is however no power button on the speaker but you can control it two ways- either through the AirPlay audio source or by using the thin remote control that comes with it. This control has all the basic functions- play/pause, previous, next, power, volume and input control. Look to the back and you will see the power brick connector, input jack and a Micro-USB port, which you will only ever need while setting it up. To set up you can connect it to your pc through this and use a downloadable app from the official website to configure it. In rotation, you may just hold the reset button to create a wireless network of sorts and then connect to that with your computer. Either way is simple enough.

After this you may send audio files from any consistent AirPlay app and then the quality of the sound will become evident. The speakers offer you a full, solid sound capable of filling a room and it is capable of getting pretty loud. One minor issue presents itself here as changing the sound on the speaker is not immediately evident with iTunes as the slider does not move, but this is hardly a deal breaker. It sounds fine though and the bass is also satisfactory, distorting only slightly at high volumes with bass-heavy songs.

The only real flaw here is the absence of battery which shouldn’t really be a separate purchase. However even with it, the sound quality is very good and it justifies the price just about. The bass distortion ruins it slightly but generally the sound quality is fine and it is all nice and easy to control. A good speaker system but not the best.

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