The Yamaha NX-P100 may be one of the better Bluetooth speakers that you’ve overlooked on the market today. Obviously, Bluetooth speakers have burst onto the scene because of the added flexibility for homeowners who are looking to for a mobile listening experience. These speakers are useful for people who want to pair their android devices or Apple products to a lightweight, yet powerful speaker.
However, because of the growing number of features becoming available on Bluetooth speakers, they are a great stepping stone for those looking for something better than traditional mini-speakers, but not quite as extravagant and pricey as top-end wireless bookshelf speakers.
Even the most casual listeners have been demanding higher sound quality from portable speakers. After briefly listening to the NX-P100, we thought it deserved a closer look. While you may recognize the brand as one not traditionally well versed in wireless portable speakers, you’re undoubtedly familiar with the pedigree of Yamaha audio. After getting to know this speaker, we can only wonder how long Yamaha will continue to fly under the radar as a reputable manufacturer of Bluetooth speakers.
Sound check: As to be expected with any speaker of this size, the bass doesn’t have the punch that we’d normally like to hear. While it is present in certain scenarios, it isn’t clearly defined when there are multiple tracks present. When listening to music with repetitive lows (i.e. Rap, Electronic dance, and Hip Hop) the NX-P100 has clear bass without sounding overbearing. With jazz, which traditionally has multiple accompanying tracks, some of this clarity is lost. Again this is something to be expected from a speaker of this size.
The NX-P100’s trebles ring true and show off the timbre of different genres of music very well. Classical music yielded crisp highs, and responsive finishes. After listening to a bit of rock music, the snare drums sounded tight with the signature ‘snap’ sound that we’re accustomed to expecting. Most importantly, the highs didn’t fade throughout the duration of listening to multiple songs.
The mid-ranges are strong throughout the entire sound spectrum, and resembled those of larger, more expensive, and non-portable setups, which impressed me a great deal. I love the way that the mid-range frequencies carry and complement the highs and lows during softer lulls, which are often present in musical dynamics.
Features: Everyone needs a bit of accident-proofing in their life. The silicone caps on the ends were a welcome addition to the NX-P100. Of course, this doesn’t make the speaker submergible by any means; however, its ability to be at least mildly forgiving of sporadic spills and random drops of water is exceptionally handy.
Simplicity in pairing was a big eye-opener for us. Some models (even ones that you may own or be familiar with) require multiple pairings once the relatively short transmitting distances are breached. However, because the Yamaha uses unique pairing technology, it has the ability to remember up to 8 devices. Moreover, it has a “last use memory” function (i.e. it will stay connected to the last device you’ve, used until you pair it with another device). To reconnect, you simply have to hold your device next to the speaker briefly.
Also, there is an audio jack and USB for those who listeners who prefer wired playback for improved sound quality. If battery life isn’t a great concern for you, you have the ability to charge your mobile device on the go, as well.
The Bottom Line
While the $200 dollar price tag will drive some listeners away, the breadth of features shows that this speaker was not haphazardly thrown together. While the NXP-100 won’t rival the Bose wireless and the Jawbone Bluetooth speakers, it is still an incredible speaker. For the price, one could find a much worse alternative. Given the fact that Yamaha focused on including specific features and components to improve the quality of Bluetooth (especially for streaming), it is apparent that this is a very purpose-driven speaker suitable for both, audiophiles and budget-conscious listeners, alike.