Archt Audio One Wireless 360° Audio System
In-built support for audio calibration is a nice touch.
No true app support yet as it lacks a dedicated app.
The Archt One is the first product from Archt Audio, and one of the first speakers to boast 360-degree sound capabilities. Basically, the speaker uses a patented sound array to send sound all around it. The drivers face upwards instead of out, and fire sound waves at the ring that disperses it in a 360-degree manner, so you can technically place the speaker anywhere and still get the same quality of sound wherever you are in the room.
Built to be simple to use, there aren’t many obvious buttons on the speaker itself. Main controls (volume up/down, pause/ play and source) are by way of touch capacitive areas on the sound array (one in each direction). Surprisingly enough, its companion app doesn’t offer much in terms of playing audio, but rather is meant to calibrate the speaker to best match your room by using the microphone on your phone to record how sounds from the speaker are refl ected off the walls.
Apparently, this calibration also determines the nature of the audio you’ll get. Placed in the center of the room, the speakers will calibrate for even distribution. Place it in the corner of the room, and it will calibrate for maximum bass impact, using the nearby walls for boost. Stereo pairing is also an option via Bluetooth, so if you pick up two of these speakers you can choose to have them as a stereo pair. Inside, the speaker features a set of fullrange drivers in the cone, a subwoofer below the sound array, and a passive radiator right at the base; helping the speaker achieve a claimed frequency response of 35Hz to 20kHz. The speaker is also rated for a max output of 100dB, which is surprisingly loud for something that’s seemingly so slim.
Setting up is a very simple process over Wi-Fi. You simply plug it in, turn it on, and ensure that it’s on Wi-Fi mode. The speaker will be picked up by iOS devices as an Airplay device, which is also how it offers multi-room support for now – via Airplay through iTunes. The company is currently developing an app update to allow for direct multi-room control, so hopefully that comes in soon as you’ll need additional software (like Whaale) to transmit different songs to different speakers.
- Dimensions 18.5 x 18.5 x 43.3cm
- Weight 3.64kg
- Power Output 100W
- Drivers: One 80mm full range speaker, one 120mm woofer, one 150mm passive radiator
- Ports: 1 x 1/8″ (3.5mm) AUX input 1 x USB port
- Price $999
When the Archt One was launched, the Archt Audio team placed a lot of the marketing emphasis on the quality of the audio produced by the system. Now that we’ve had a chance to put the speaker through its paces somewhat, we’re pleased to say that this newcomer does indeed have some audio chops, though they’re not quite enough to justify the price. You get a good deal of mid-range clarity, and ample bass to boot. For example, when you listen to a recording of I Love Paris by Johnny Frigo, it’s fairly easy to pick out each instrument amid all the musical frenzy. Moving on to our own formal testing, the speaker seemed to perform best on Buckethead’s Sail on Soothsayer as it gave good performance on both the high-mids and the low end, with good body in the bass notes. If anything, we’d say the speaker was just a touch too bright for our liking, so we’d stick to tracks that focus mostly on the mid to low end like pop or rock or even electronic dance music with its heavy thumping bass.