NuVo has raised the bar in whole home audio with its new Wireless Music System. Promising audiophile grade music through a dual-band, MIMO-enabled WiFi network, NuVo claims that up to 16 simultaneous, 600 kbps streams are possible. That’s a lot of zones, at a pretty high bitrate for streaming music.
The NuVo systems connects to your home network through the GW100 network gateway via trusty Ethernet, but from there, it’s wireless all the way. A single gateway is good for about a 4,000 sq-ft home. If you need more coverage, additional gateways can be added to the same system. Control is handled via the portable device of your choosing, with free apps available for both iOS and Android. There is also an option for a wireless controller from NuVo, but I imagine most users will opt to use their own device.
Setup is snap via a wizard built into the control app. The same wizard allows for setting up new zones later. Each zone is powered by either a P100 or P200 music player. Both models have an integrated amplifier (20W and 60W, respectively) and have 5-way gold binding posts to ensure a solid connection to your loudspeaker of choice. In addition to the more powerful amp, the P200 is equipped with aptX Bluetooth technology, so that mobile devices, including most tablets and many smartphones, can send music wirelessly at audiophile quality to the P200 for playback in one or multiple zones.
Both players support the most common audio formats, including MP3, WMA, ACC, FLAC, and WAV, as well as Internet radio streams from Pandora, Sirius/XM, Rhapsody, TuneIn, and others. Each also offers a USB 2.0 (Type A) port, allowing direct playback from any USB compatible thumb drive or hard drive. Both players also offer 3.5 mm stereo analog in and analog out mini jacks: The analog in will accept any analog line level audio signal, with the players providing signal amplification. The analog out provides the line level signal to an additional amplifier, powered subwoofer, or headphones. The P200 incorporates a third mini jack for future applications.
NuVo is the only audio products manufacturer to employ two leading-edge WiFi technologies — dual-band concurrent and MIMO (multiple in, multiple out), simultaneously — in a dedicated multi-room, multi-stream audio system. The advantages are simple: dual-band concurrent means the gateway continuously sends out audio streams on both the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz WiFi frequency bands, with the user selecting the band with the best reception when setting up each zone. MIMO is an advanced wireless technology, also used in cellular communications, that optimizes high-speed data transmission.
NuVo made a name for itself with its professionally installed, whole home audio systems, but this new system marks a first for the company. The Wireless Music System will be available direct to consumers for DIY installation.
The NuVo Wireless Audio System will be available to consumers from two authorized on-line retailers, SMARTHOME Inc. and Parts Express. The GW100 gateway will carry a retail price of $199, while the P200 wireless player will sell for $599 and the P100 for $479.