Naim Mu-So and Mu-So Qb reviewed and rated! We give Naim’s foray into compact, one-box, wireless streaming devices a test-drive!
Naim: it’s a brand synonymous with high-end, audiophile quality Hi-Fi systems, and timeless products such as the NAP250 power amplifier and NAIT integrated amplifiers. Naim’s recent foray into wireless, all-in-one systems such as the Mu-So and Mu-So Qb, has been something of a leftfield departure for the company.
Generic junk with a prestige badge attached? Or, a credible Hi-Fi alternative to Hi-Fi separates? Join us as we find out…
In 2014, Naim launched the Mu-So, Naim’s very first wireless music system. Mu-So was a radical departure for Naim, who has built a deserved reputation for designing and manufacturing some of the finest Hi-Fi separates in the world. The addition of an all-in-one system to their range certainly raised a few eyebrows!
Very quickly, however, rave reviews started to pour in from the Hi-Fi press, confirming that Naim’s years of Hi-Fi expertise bore fruit in creating one of the world’s best wireless music systems.
The specifications of the Mu-So are as remarkable as its eye-catching design; a beefy, 450 watts of power is channelled through six, custom-designed speakers.
The Mu-So is easy to use and allows for powerful streaming options. AirPlay, Bluetooth®/aptX®, Spotify Connect®, TIDAL, UPnP™ (access stored music), Internet Radio, Multiroom, USB, Analogue and Digital inputs, Apple iOS and Android apps are all part of the Mu-So experience.
So what does the Mu-So sound like? Pleasantly surprising is one way to describe the experience! With eyes closed, one could be fooled into thinking there’s a traditional Hi-Fi separates system in the room with you. Indeed the Mu-So comfortably outperforms some budget Hi-Fi setups by a comfortable margin.
The Naim Mu-So creates A big, full sound with great depth, body and authority; forget any preconceptions you may have about “soundbar” type systems. The Mu-So has a quality of sound and tonality which is altogether removed from the vast majority of wireless loudspeakers.
It’s clear that the designers have worked miracles in condensing an amplification and loudspeaker package into such a compact space. Despite its compact dimensions (only just over half a metre wide), the Mu-So can comfortably fill a room with deep, enjoyable bass which will have you searching for the (non-existent) subwoofer.
It’s a deeply impressive, hugely stylish and convenient solution for anyone looking for room-filling sound, without the room-filling equipment!
Naim Mu-So Qb
The Naim Mu-So Qb is, funnily enough, a cube-shaped (see what they did there?), wireless speaker which condenses much of the power and room-filling sound of the Mu-So into a compact, stylish solution which will fit into any home.
Just like the Mu-So, initial impressions are of a high-quality product, with a beautifully weighted controller on the top of the unit, with a touch-screen which looks like it’s come straight from the pages of a Sci-Fi film. It’s a great product experience which doesn’t stop when the music starts…
Whilst the sound isn’t quite as big or as clean as the Mu-So, the Qb still creates a size and quality of sound which belies its diminutive proportions. A single Qb kicks out enough of a punch for a house party, all by itself; it’s easy to see how a handful of Qb’s could fill a house with high-quality sound.
Again, the Mu-So Qb leaves a lasting impression of quality, style and audio presentation far beyond what one’s eyes associate with being possible for a speaker of this size. Deeply impressive and surely one of the finest wireless speakers on the market.
Naim Mu-So: Style, Quality and Sonic-Pleasure
For those looking for a big sound, the convenience of wireless, multi-room streaming but without the size and hassle of traditional Hi-Fi separates, then the Naim Mu-So range should be at the very top of your shopping list.
Those who were worried that Naim may have “sold out” need only to listen to the Naim Mu-So range to appreciate the engineering and Hi-Fi know-how that Naim has brought to the wireless speaker segment.