Wharfedale last week launched a new series of speakers called Diamond Active, they look and promise to be a rather interesting innovation. They can be best described as true wireless active stereo speakers. All they need is a power lead to drive them, there are no speaker cables!
The Wharfedale Diamond Active series are basically a pair of individually active (in other words including the amplifier) speakers that require no interconnection between them as they are connected via (uncompresed) wireless transmission to a separate ‘advanced H1 Hub’, so no speaker cable!. The Hub can be connected to a source via aptX codec Bluetooth, digital coaxial, or optical signals or via RCA phono type leads for an analogue source (like a turntable, could be fun!!).
There are two speakers being launched, a ‘Diamond Active A1’ classic bookshelf pair (31.5cm high) and a Diamond Active A2 floor standing pair (91.2cm high). Both pairs have 50W of amplification in each speaker, promising a rather substantial sound output.
The WiFi kitchen arrives
For me the Bluetooth to the hub implies you can have a pair of speakers in the kitchen, for example, in random places, either side of doors or sinks, etc, being driven by a smartphone or tablet. That is very interesting indeed. I have experienced wireless speakers before with hub wireless type systems, like the Raumfeld floor standers that were very good indeed, but they always had the interconnect between the two speakers to maintain timing and deliver the signal to the other (passive) speaker, so they couldn’t stand either side of doors safely. I have the AudioPro LV33e wireless speakers connected to my Mac and I use them every day. They use their dongle system (like the hub) and stand either side of my office area and I have no timing issues but these Wharfedale Diamond Active speakers may just take the biscuit for me. We will see.
Available from October, the bookshelf A1s will be priced at £599.95 and the A2 floor standers will be priced at £999.95, both including the H1 hub.