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Gear4 AirZone Series 1 Airplay speaker dock [review]

Gear4 AirZone Airplay speaker dock

Whilst Gear4 did not make the Angry Birds speakers wireless with AirPlay technology, their first AirPlay speaker in the Gear4 AirZone Series 1 is a good entry level AirPlay speaker dock.

Gear4 AirZone Airplay speaker dockGear4 is a well known iPod speaker dock brand here in the UK and globally with a wide range of solutions for all pocket sizes. With their first AirPlay speaker they are following in the footsteps of some of their closest competitors in the market, including Sony with their Sony SA-NS500 AirPlay and JBL which have launched two Airplay speakers so far with the latest being the JBL OnBeat Air.

The Gear4 AirZone Series 1 has a fairly classic speaker dock design that should be familiar to most users. The build quality feels good and sturdy, and whilst I would not say that it is amongst the best and most iconic looking AirPlay speaker docks in the market, it is quite pleasing on the eye, with a versatile design.

Unlike many other Airplay speakers in the market they have also chosen to include a physical docking station, but making it a small and well integrated solution that supports docking of everything from an iPod and iPhone to the iPad. They have also included FM radio, a nice little add-on considering that with Airplay functionality you should also have access to thousands of online radio stations. There is also the option of connecting devices through the 3.5mm aux input.

Setting up the AirPlay functionality was also fairly straightforward, although it takes a bit of time to input the WiFi security using the fairly standard credit card size remote control. During the review process there has been a couple of times where I have lost AirPlay connection, but that is something I have experienced on other AirPlay systems as well.

In terms of audio performance the Gear4 AirZone Series 1 performed better than first expected. You can adjust the sound slightly with the 6EQ settings, although further controls would be welcomed, but not expected from a system in this price class. Overall the sound feels crips and clear. The system struggles a bit with bass-heavy songs, lacking some punch for those bass-thumping house parties, but for just relaxing at home with some music it does a decent job, especially at this price point.

Price & availability


[ratings]

Filed in: Apple AirPlay, Gear 4, Gear4 speakers, iPod Speaker Docks, Reviews

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