5 February 2015

REVIEW: Edifier M2280 Multimedia Speakers

Plug and play.

From high-end wireless speakers, to smaller, pocket-ready blasters, audio brand Edifier have made several appearances in these pages and always in good reviews. This time round we're taking a look at a pair of wired multimedia speakers, ideal for static bases like desktop computers and gaming centres. It's the Edifier M2280.

WHAM - theses aren't Bluetooth! We need to say that straight away, as its surprising just how many people might be turned off by that. Yes, Bluetooth functionality is very handy, particularly about the house when all your music and media is on your phone and tablet. But when thinking about wired, traditional speakers like the M2280, you need to consider a more appropriate use.

That said, we whacked them behind the ol' desktop computer and plugged in the single 3.5mm audio jack. The speakers are a simple affair, being set up with one speaker possessing the power and jack ports, with the other plugging directly into that. There is also a volume rocker on the base speaker, but apart from that - that's it.

In terms of design they are probably the plainest speakers we've ever seen from Edifier - a company known for producing odd and unique looking equipment. Because of that, you really don't feel bad about stashing them away behind your monitor or screen - there really isn't anything to see, so why bother?

Connected to our desktop we tried the speakers on a range of audio sources, from YouTube, iTunes, and various games. We found them to be fairly solid in their sound reproduction, pumping out a decent quality of both bass and treble. Across the mid-range of all genres of music they performed well, with slight distortion creeping in only when the volume was pushed to the upper limit. We found the Edifier M2280 speakers to be most effective during gaming, where music is in the background and sharp detailed sound effects were at the fore. Space the speakers correctly, and you get pretty good immersive stereo.

But, and this is one that allows the M2280s to be used in a more contemporary way, we utilised them in our connected home. Test Pit Towers is, as you might expect, filled to the rafters with smarthome technology, and as the Edifier speakers are just that - plain speakers with a wire - it enabled us to use them with the D-Link Music Everywhere WiFi Extender. This clever gadget (which we've yet to review - watch this space) allows you to plug in conventional speakers such as the edifier M2280, and then connect them to your home WiFi network, accessing media on your phone, tablet, laptop etc.

The Edifier M2280 Multimedia Speakers are perfect for this, as the included wires are long enough to connect to the D-Link device and then be placed discreetly around your home. As the speakers are small and compact enough to be fairly well hidden about a room, this created a surround-sound effect with all the convenience of wireless connectivity. Just a thought, eh?

So, although the M2280 don't have all the crazy wireless connections we might be used to these days, they are definitely not obsolete, and for that price they're real contenders.

Around £40

© The Test Pit

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