We all know that it’s possible to have multi-room speaker systems if you’re willing to spend up big on Sonos’ proprietary Wi-Fi speaker system, but what if you want to do it on the cheap, and only to one room? This is where the Qualcomm Laser WiFi Adaptor (SPK-WFADAPTOR) comes into play – it’s a tiny Wi-Fi hub that plugs into your existing Wi-Fi network to offer wireless music to any speaker in your house… with certain conditions.
It’s a tiny box around the size of a pack of cards, and comes with both Ethernet and 802.11abgn support, and plugs into your existing speaker system via optical out (for AV receivers) or 3.5mm stereo minijack for basic speakers. This is its biggest downfall though. Those of you with high-end speakers will want the twin wired jacks that high-end speakers use, but sadly this unit doesn’t come with it.
It also has a rather large power pack that you’ll need to find a power point for, so it’s not quite as wireless as it first seems. Still, if you’ve got a set of speakers that run over 3.5mm stereo minijack, it’s a very cheap and simple solution for bringing sound to the rest of your house. Our only issue was range – after about 10 metres and several walls we started to get drop outs. The smartphone app makes it a breeze to use with streaming services, but you’re going to need excellent Wi-Fi coverage to get the most out of this device.
At only $99, this is a much cheaper alternative to the likes of Sonos and other wireless audio brands. However, it also comes with certain limitations that means it may not be the perfect solution for your specific audio solution, specifically the reliance on S/PDIF out or 3.5mm out.