THESE budget speakers won’t win design awards but their quality surprises
Gadget review: Sond Audio active bookshelf speakers
SOND is not a name that springs to mind in the crowded audiophile market, but that may change. A manufacturing division of the online retailer, eBuyer, it has quietly been turning out a range of audio consumer technology, such as soundbars, Bluetooth speakers and headphones, all adhering to the same unfussy, contemporary design motif.
Its latest product, a pair of active Bluetooth-enabled bookshelf speakers, stays true to the look of the range. A deep black is the colour of the day while the front grille is robust without being chunky and intrusive. Their appearance could never be described as revolutionary, but it is clean and uncluttered, and fits in well with most rooms and home cinema setups.
At top whack the sound remains well defined with no distortion
With 180W of power, the Sonds pack a fair old punch and our listening tests found that even with the volume cranked up on busy tracks such as Led Zeppelin’s Rock and Roll, the channels remained well defined with no distortion problems. In a few instances, the high end felt slightly subdued in the mix but for the price these speakers boast solid and rounded engineering.
The built-in amplifier means the Sonds are a great option for hooking up to a television, satellite box or gaming console. The sound signature is balanced and lends itself well to movies, adding some welcome low-end that more expensive soundbars struggle to supply. In a decent sized living room, you will be more than pleased at the performance on offer.
Connectivity options are impressive although an optical cable would have been nice
So too, the company deserve praise for the range of connectivity options that have gone into the speakers. As well as a reliable Bluetooth pairing system, the active right speaker has analogue inputs, a 3.5mm mini-jack and a USB input that is useful if you are looking to hook up a laptop. The one notable absence, unfortunately, is an optical cable.
It is clear that there are similar speakers out there that provide more in the way of design and sound quality, but for the price it really is quite hard to see past the Sonds. They are an ideal way of bolstering your home audio setup without hitting the wallet too hard. Its name may not be well known, but if it keeps turning out products like this, it is only a matter of time before Sond becomes a serious player in the budget audio market.
The Sond Audio bookshelf speakers are available to buy from eBuyer