Q Acoustics M40 Review: A Superb Sounding Mini All-In-One Tower

Streaming from a mixture of AAC recordsdata from Apple Music on the iPhone 15 Pro, and each Qobuz and Spotify utilizing the aptX appropriate Sony Xperia 1 V, I used to be totally entertained by the M40s. They’re balanced and surprisingly punchy, with a scrumptious low-end that I genuinely didn’t count on.

Working via my Family Playlist, it’s blatant that these audio system don’t discriminate. Like the proper wedding ceremony DJ, they’re joyful if the viewers is joyful. The Prodigy’s traditional dance-floor filler/emptier (delete relying on how outdated you have been in 1994) “Your Love” bounces and rumbles with luggage of vitality, whereas Olivia Rodrigo’s ”Vampire” soars confidently, with spectacular management, even on the type of quantity a 10-year-old daughter calls for.

From classical to traditional rock, by way of electronica and acoustic, I’ve but to be upset by the M40’s heat, accessible efficiency. Plugging my laptop computer in by way of USB port (most 24 bit/192 kHz by way of Qobuz) added extra depth to the playback in comparison with commonplace Bluetooth streaming, however I think about most homeowners can be delighted nonetheless they’re selecting to pay attention.

As additional reference, I positioned the M40s side-by-side with the equally priced Q Acoustics 3050i analog floorstanding audio system. These have been powered by the Sonos Amp with audio streamed wirelessly. I used to be shocked by how nicely the M40 HD saved up whereas streaming “simply” aptX Bluetooth. Yes, they lacked the identical full-bodied presence, however that’s hardly shocking given the 40-inch cupboard top (12 inches taller, and significantly wider) and twin 165-mm drivers.

They didn’t, nonetheless, really feel underwhelming. And whereas $999 is not chump change, given the added price of an amplifier, streamer, CD participant, and so on., and appreciable dimension financial savings, they provide strong worth for cash.

Competition Time

Not to be confused with one thing just like the loan-inducing, KEF LS60 Wireless floorstanding audio system, however if you happen to do need the added tech of Wi-Fi, EQ settings, app-based distant management, and hi-res streaming, the WIRED Recommended KEF LSX II LT might be price a glance. It prices about the identical and sounds dreamy, however lacks the flexibility to command a good-size room.

The M40s sound nice, look good, and sonically punch nicely above their dimension, however the lack of good options might be alienating to many potential patrons. Bluetooth sounds good right here (particularly aptX), and I think about many individuals received’t suppose to demand extra.

But anybody who has used a speaker with Wi-Fi streaming can be annoyed by the constraints of Bluetooth. Audio slicing out when a cellphone name is available in, alerts dropping if you happen to depart the room together with your cellphone, and having to connect with the audio system every time feels dated.

You may, after all, plug a streaming field just like the well-regarded $149 WiiM Pro into the M40s and luxuriate in all the advantages of hi-res Wi-Fi streaming with Spotify Connect, AirPlay, Alexa, and Google Assistant. It’s not best, nevertheless it’s a comparatively friction-free workaround for anybody wanting very good audio high quality and streaming smarts.

I’m not, nonetheless, going to name the M40s old school. They’re positively low-tech, if hi-res Wi-Fi streaming and app-controlled compatibility are necessary to you. But if you happen to’re available in the market for an excellent pair of all-in-one stereo audio system with 200 watts of amplification in-built, and with connections to laptop computer, turntable (preamp wanted), CD participant, and Bluetooth streaming, you received’t be upset.

I’ll even be the primary to confess that I used to be skeptical concerning the dimension of the M40s. Launching one thing to a predominantly conventional audio viewers that’s not one factor or one other is a danger. But in real-world situations, the mini towers managed to be comparatively unobtrusive whereas sounding something however. Maybe, simply perhaps, it truly is what you do with it that counts.

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