People are rapidly accepting the idea of untethering their sound system and it’s long overdue. Of course, traditionalists will attest to the classic approach of enjoying music in an intimate, almost inflexible listening ambiance as the superior means to an end.
However, the reality is that most consumers don’t enjoy music so sternly, as evidenced by the endless array of soundbars and smart connected speakers available today. Modern enthusiasts will happily accept more convenient setup like the SVS Prime Wireless Speaker System, a fantastic solution for multiroom music with agreeable compromises sprinkled here and there.
A Cleaner Look
Those who know of SVS will associate the brand with tall and incredibly monolithic speakers, and even bigger house-thumping subwoofer that can the police called on you for excessive noise (no joke). However, the Prime Wireless look and sound familiar if you’re already acquainted with their compact family of home theater offerings — they’re just regular Prime satellite speakers repurposed with an elevated a base for the direct controls and internal amplifiers. It’s also not a coincidence that you can have these in either a piano black or milk white glossy body and fabric grille, both of which are fingerprint magnets but look luxurious, nonetheless.
Around back on the right speaker are inputs and a lot of them. You get analog ports in both 3.5mm and L/R RCA auxiliary inputs, a digital Optical input, Ethernet in and out connection (Wi-Fi worked fine for us), and even an output for adding a subwoofer for added oomph whenever needed.
Much of the real action is situated of the right channel speaker with dual control knobs and a simple display panel for basic info. A power cable for the master (right) and single connection cable provides the same for the left as well, they pair automatically for basic usage. This also where Play-Fi earns its keep because the Prime Wireless doesn’t include a remote control, which is either a cost-cutting maneuver or plain oversight. But if you need do to anything tactile, the left control knob scrolls between all those sources and customizable presets, while the right knob handles volume and playback.
If you’re doing anything wireless whether it be through automatic Bluetooth or Wi-Fi; including separate Spotify, Pandora, Tidal and DTS Play-Fi apps to name a few services that aren’t Apple Music. Granted, some methods require a couple more steps or even light instructions to breeze through, but I dealt with zero problems each time I intentionally reconnected to my home network.
Because these are essentially the same original Prime speakers I’ve covered so long ago, my opinions have changed quite a bit from what I initially felt versus now. In retrospect, the Prime speakers still sound somewhat bright for serious music listeners but manage to sound splendid for their size. There’s an inherent smoothness upon immediate startup with spatial imaging being adequately tight, with relatively strong low-end depth to prop things up.
From my extended time living with the Prime wireless speakers, there really is a lot more going on within the midrange and treble balance that’s cannot be ignored. which is also where the Prime Wireless excelled acoustically and sold itself for the remainder of my testing. It appears a lot of the improvements come from the amplifier now that it’s self-contained, almost everything about this just sounds better out of the box beyond casual listening.
Wireless performance is very flexible if you’re more into internet radio or completely reliant on a streaming — in fact, the Prime Wireless is overqualified for the task. Local media, specifically if you decide to hook with up Ethernet is supremely clean as high resolution 192kHz/24-bit music is ran through an internal DAC. It does a nice job producing a solid aural presentation, but can sound a little flat for bass-heavy songs; 6ix9ine’s “Fefe” and Offset’s “Clout” portrayed the Prime’s limitations under duress. If your music library is more articulate and refined then this won’t dampen the mood, otherwise you might want to add a subwoofer here.
The Prime Wireless is exactly what you demand from an unbound speaker system that costs a lot more money, except here you don’t have to reach into a higher price bracket for similar performance. From its extremely good build quality and design to excellent sound quality backed a reputable company, after spending a couple months with this, it’s apparent that SVS has crafted something to corner all facets for discerning music lovers. Admittedly, Apple users will have to jump through a couple more hoops and this is not quite ideal for TV connections, but extremely potent for gateway audiophiles.