If you want music playing in every room of your house, there's only one easy way to do it: buy a bunch of wireless audio speakers. Samsung is really stepping up its wireless audio game, and the new R1, R3 and R5 speakers are the first salvo in what is set to be a big war against Sonos, as well as other wi-fi speaker competitors like LG and Sony.
The new speakers are the first to be developed at Samsung's multi-million-dollar audio research lab in Los Angeles, which has two anechoic chambers to measure and reduce unwanted sound reflection from walls and objects a 360-degree listening environment. The result is speakers that have excellent omnidirectional audio both at every horizontal point around their cylindrical designs and up and down their vertical axes.
The three new speakers are the $299 R1, $499 R3 and $649 R5, and are a good-better-best line-up in terms of size as well as price. Where the R1 has a downward-firing 3.6-inch woofer driver, for example, the larger R5 has a 5-inch driver and moves more air to create more bass. None are portable, though — all have to be plugged into power to operate, and don't have internal rechargeable batteries.
All three will work with Samsung's updated Multiroom app for Android and iOS, which now also works with Samsung's Gear S smartwatch and the Apple Watch on respective platforms. You can group speakers together, or play different music — from services like Spotify, Deezer and Samsung's own Milk Music — individually, or move music from one speaker to another seamlessly if you're walking from room to room.
You'll be able to buy the R1, R3 and R5 speakers soon. Samsung's more powerful egg-shaped R6 and R7 speakers have already been out in Australia for some time, priced at $599 and $699 respectively. [Samsung]