This 3-in-1 Bluetooth speaker hides two small speakers to create an immersive cocoon

Sony has unveiled the HT-AX7, a new connected speaker sold with two small satellites to place at your convenience. We were able to quickly take control of the machine.

Sony is a go-to brand when it comes to audio. If we are waiting for news of the future Sony XM5, whose visuals have recently leaked, it is for a product with a fairly innovative concept that the Japanese firm has invited us to.

The Sony HT-AX7, in addition to honoring Sony’s love of simple names, is a set of three Bluetooth speakers. One main and two satellites, you could say. Make no mistake, if the main speaker has the shape of a soundbar, it is not so, since it does not include an HDMI port. Sony explained to us that this device was mainly intended for ” consume content, on a tablet for example, or listen to music alone or accompanied “. A paradox when we know that the range “excluding taxSony is precisely that of its sound bars, like the Sony HT-A5000.

Because it is another particularity of the HT-AX7. Its two speakers, which give it a Mickey Mouse look, can therefore be detached at will. You then have two choices. Either you want to do a solo listening session, then you have to place them, one on the right and the other on the left and press the Sound Field button. There, Sony promises that the device immerses you in a listening bubble. It is not a Dolby Atmos system, but a decomposition of the sound signal carried out by the device to distribute it between the three speakers and immerse you.

The other option you have is if you want to use the three devices as three different speakers. There, you can scatter the three devices in an apartment for example, which will then switch to mono sound.

After a quick start, it’s nice, but too expensive

We briefly tested it and… the concept is neat, but it’s probably too expensive for its own good. Concretely, we were able to try three different scenarios. Let’s come back to it.

Listening on the terrace

Immersed in a Coldplay concert, on a terrace above the arteries of London, we were able to appreciate the ability of this device to cut outside sounds. The experience was pleasant and we have the bubble effect. On the other hand, the listening quality was not to die for. Enjoyable, but not memorable.

Audiovisual content

The other case that Sony wanted to highlight is the possibility of properly sounding a cinema session with a tablet in hand. Clearly, we had an iPad in our hands and we could take advantage of the Sound Field mode which will spatialize the sounds. On an excerpt from James Bond, we found the rendering of the voices quite strange, really distorted.

On the other hand, the noises specific to action films, bullets and other crumpled sheets seemed to us to come out of the experience rather grown. Another clip showed a point from a tennis match. I found that here, the enclosure really gave relief to the polite silence of a Wimbledon match, only interrupted by the noise of rackets and the rattling of the players.

Pregnant for evening

The last demo aimed to reproduce the situation of an indoor party in a relatively large living room (30 to 40 m²) – at least for a London apartment. The two satellites were placed at one end while the main speaker was placed centrally on the kitchen table. I found it practical to add sound to an evening at a moment’s notice. However, I found the performance, from what little I could see, not necessarily breathtaking. This highlights the versatility of this new product. On the other hand, the sound was clearly richer on the main speaker than on the two satellites, which will not surprise anyone.

The rest of the abilities

To function, the HT-AX7 incorporates two speakers, which instead of being round are slightly extended towards the sides. There are also two passive bass radiators. The two satellites each incorporate a loudspeaker with a wide diffusion angle.

Sony promises 30 hours of battery life on a full charge. Ten minutes of charging can theoretically recover up to 2.5 hours of listening. Remember that this is a device intended primarily for mobile listening, which must be used with a smartphone, a tablet, or even a mobile projector. The satellites are also recharged by placing them on the main enclosure using magnetic magnetic connectors.

Prices and availability

The HT-AX7 will be released in September 2023. It will cost around 600 euros.

This article was written as part of a press trip organized by Sony in London.

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