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Review Kygo B9/800

Smart speaker that can swim

Kygo B9/800 is the only smart speaker we know of that you can take with you to the swimming pool.

Karakter
Kygo B9/800
Withstands water up to a meter depth for 30 minutes. It even floats! Google Home makes the Kygo B9 / 800 an exciting portable speaker.
The sound can be experienced a little strained over time. For desktop use, the USB connector on top is not very nice, with a cable sticking up and hanging down.
  • Type: Wireless smart speaker
  • Management system: Google Home
  • Wireless: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
  • Connection: Aux, USB C
  • Speaker element: 2 x 1.75 ”
  • Goals: –
  • Colors: White or black
  • Other: Portable, Waterproof (IPX7), can be connected in pairs
  • Web: kygolife.com

The Kygo B9 / 800 is the first portable smart speaker on our test bench. The battery should last for eight consecutive hours, and the speaker has both Bluetooth for mobile connection and Wi-Fi to connect to the Google Home system. For outdoor use, it benefits from being waterproof (IPX7), and can be soaked to a depth of one meter for up to 30 consecutive minutes. To achieve this, it is clad in rubber, which seals tightly around the speaker. Which in turn means that one has to make powerful EQ adjustment with digital processing (DSP), so that it does not sound completely confined.

Two speakers can be connected in stereo, and the speaker works just as well as any other Google speaker. “Hey, Google, vacuum!” Since it goes into sleep mode after a long time without power, it should in practice be connected to the socket at home. Then it is stupid that the charging socket is on top, because it is not a nice view of the bedside table, with the cable sticking up from the top. You can lay it horizontally, but it works best standing up.

The voice assistant sounds clear, much more so than with Google’s own Home speaker. But getting the harmonics through a layer of rubber requires a lot of processing, and creates a lot of distortion. The treble does not get exactly dissolved and airy, more forward and sharp. There’s not much bass to talk about here either, and it sounds a bit strained in the long run.

Conclusion

If you want a Google speaker that is both portable and waterproof (and floats!), Then the Kygo B9 / 800 is a safe purchase, with ok sound. If not here’s a new product just for you! Conversely, there are better portable speakers out there, if you do not need the Google functionality. You can easily alternatively spend NOK 600 on a Google Home Mini, and the rest of the budget on an even better portable speaker.

Also in this test

Libratone Zipp Mini 2

Looks like a thermos

Libratone goes against the flow, and the Alexa speaker Libratone Zipp Mini 2 looks like a thermos. It is portable, plays music well, and two can be connected in stereo.

12 hours of battery life makes the speaker very flexible. Clear sound on speech and approved sound on music.
There is a lack of bass, and the speaker falls short when you want to gobble up. As is well known, Alexa does not speak Norwegian.

Harman Kardon Citation 100

Looks Fantastic

This is probably the prettiest speaker we've seen in its class. However, the Harman Kardon Citation 100 fails to take sound advantage of its larger exterior.

The speaker has a beautiful finish in wool, and looks fantastic. Google voice control makes it speak Norwegian, and the sound is very clear and pleasant.
Does not play as big and powerful as the size gives hope for.

Marshall Stanmore II Voice Google Assistant

Concert from the bookshelf

Marshall Stanmore II plays much louder sound than the competition, without compromising the balance. It crushes them, quite simply.

No other smart speakers we have heard deliver this sound pressure. It just gets even heavier because it also sounds balanced and good enough for calm tones.
The sound can be experienced as a bit rough at the edges, and the appearance of the Marshall speakers does not appeal to everyone.

Apple HomePod

Approved from Apple

Apple HomePod has very good sound and is easy to use. But smart steering seems too rigid and solid.

Impressive deep bass combined with clear, airy sound. In addition, the HomeKit system is very stable.
It's not just about adding products to control. As there are currently quite a few of. Does not speak Norwegian

Hama Sirium 1400ABT

Bigger does not mean bigger sound

Hamas' smallest Alexa speaker Sirium 1400ABT is a bit larger than the Amazon Echo, but still fails to give us any greater sound.

Clear enough sound, and the speaker enjoys the functionality of the Alexa system.
Larger cabinets still do not produce louder sound than the smaller competitors. Cannot currently pair in stereo. Alexa does not speak Norwegian.

Google Home

Enormous potential

The Google Home system has enormous potential, but as a speaker this is not the best.

Perhaps the market's most successful voice control and merging of smart products.
Even if the bass is full enough, it murmurs upwards in the voice range, and destroys the sound from both the voice assistant and the newscaster. We miss routine commands in Norway.

Sonos One

A smarter Sonos

Sonos One will one day give us both Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa in one and the same smart speaker. But Google is waiting.

Sonos One withstands moisture and sounds good. With upcoming updates, it will be among the most versatile on the market.
Until further notice, it is Alexa who applies, who does not speak Norwegian. There are speakers with heavier bass.

Amazon Echo (2nd Generation)

Clear voice

With ready-made sound on the voice assistant, only the language barrier stands between us and the automated work tasks.

A compact and appealing appearance, clear speech sound and also a stable and good control system compared to other devices. Two can be paired in stereo.
The sound is tame on music, you have to take some detours to get the speaker connected in Norway, and Alexa does not understand Norwegian.

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