Naim is continuing to make an impact in the high-end wireless music system market with a new addition to its Mu-so product line, the Mu-so Qb ($999). This all-in-one audio gadget boasts some impressive specs and sound qualities, along with robust construction and a convenient mobile app. Despite its small size and form factor, the product offers phenomenal sound and a remarkably different design from similar products.
Most noticeable when listening to the Qb is the strong, controlled bass presence that still allows other frequencies to shine. The device also casts a wide soundstage for its petite size, thanks to the tuned, angled drivers, ports, and passive radiators built in to the design. Even the most sophisticated listener will note that the high frequencies on the Qb are very impressive, as Naim included two custom-made dome tweeters designed to very tight tolerances. Powered by an integrated 100-watt amplifier, the Qb packs a stronger punch than many high-fidelity audio systems, and can easily fill a medium-size room with sound.
The construction feels durable and sturdy, and interestingly enough is made from a 20-percent glass-filled polymer with very rigid, supportive properties. A large volume knob tops the Qb, and at the center are several touch-sensitive controls. It is likely that the user won’t be using these controls very often, as Naim has produced a handy mobile app for iPhone and Android that conveniently can control the device from any room over a local network. The Qb integrates with network-attached storage devices, Apple AirPlay, any PC or Mac, and popular audiophile and consumer-grade streaming services. Internet radio is also a convenient option, with several Naim-selected presets available to the user upon startup. A handful of inputs are also available, including optical, USB, Ethernet, and a standard 3.5 mm jack. Looking for a multiroom solution? No problem. Naim designed its app to accommodate up to five Qb units in different rooms, which can all be centrally controlled from your phone. The Naim Qb is a strong product with great design features and a sonic signature that suggests true quality. If the black grille does not fit in a room design, Naim is shipping the Qb in other optional colors, including blue, red, and orange. The Qb would be a great feature in any space that requires minimal wiring, sharp accents, and a need for the sound of conveniently controlled, high-quality music. (naimaudio.com)