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Cabasse challenges Naim with new Pearl Akoya wireless speaker

Cabasse challenges Naim with new Pearl Akoya wireless speaker
(Image credit: Future)

Cabasse has launched the Pearl Akoya, a smaller, more affordable version of its Pearl wireless speaker, at the Paris AV Show.

Coming in at £1499, a more palatable figure than its bigger bro’s £2599 asking price, the eyeball-resembling active wireless speaker is 22cm in diameter as opposed to 32cm. But despite its more modest size, the Akoya is, according to Cabasse, capable of 115dB of volume, equivalent to that of a live classical orchestra.

Underneath the Akoya’s six layers of lacquer finishing is what Cabasse claims is the most compact triaxial speaker ever created.

In one direction is a rear-firing 17cm subwoofer, and at the other is a front-facing neodynium tweeter and mid-range driver in a coaxial arrangement. The casing is double reinforced with injected resin and fibre and finished in either a Metallic Black or Pearl White with silver or chromium highlights.

Cabasse launches more affordable Pearl Akoya wireless speaker

(Image credit: Future)

Like many premium wireless speakers in today's market, it can stream music over both Bluetooth and wi-fi, is compatible with Cabasse's own Assistant voice control, and will play ball with various audio files, including MP3, AIFF, FLAC and ALAC.

Playback comes via the Cabasse StreamCONTROL app, where you can a) access your locally stored music as well as Qobuz, Deezer, Spotify, Napster, Tidal and internet radio, and b) create a control a multi-room environment. To that end, it’s compatible with all other Cabasse multi-room products.

Around the back of the unit is an Ethernet socket, a 3.5mm line in, optical audio and a micro USB socket. 

With its price and features in mind, the Cabasse Pearl Akoya will be in prime position to compete with the five-star Naim Mu-so 2 (£1299) when it arrives in November. We look forward to seeing how it fares.

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Dan Sung

Dan is a staff writer at What Hi-Fi? and his job is with product reviews as well as news, feature and advice articles too. He works across both the hi-fi and AV parts of the site and magazine and has a particular interest in home cinema. Dan joined What Hi-Fi? in 2019 and has worked in tech journalism for over a decade, writing for Tech Digest, Pocket-lint, MSN Tech and Wareable as well as freelancing for T3, Metro and the Independent. Dan has a keen interest in playing and watching football. He has also written about it for the Observer and FourFourTwo and ghost authored John Toshack's autobiography, Toshack's Way.