It’s the first day of the new term. You’ve changed so much over the holidays; you’re a completely different person and you now wear a beret. But your geography teacher slaps the hat from your head and calls you Frank Spencer. Now everyone’s shouting ‘Ooh Betty’ at you in the corridors and the ‘new you’ has been an absolute disaster.
Thankfully, some are cool enough to make the change and still garner respect, as Audio Pro has done with its A10 wireless speaker. The Swedish manufacturer now has a cabinet full of What Hi-Fi? Awards for its T and C ranges of wireless speakers – its boombox-style cabinets with the iconic Mickey Mouse driver array have dominated a saturated market for years.
The Audio Pro A10, though, is an entirely different design. A fabric-coated cylinder standing just shy of 20cm, it resembles more the kind of speaker we’re used to seeing from its rivals, but most importantly, it brings the company’s sonic signature sound to a multi-room speaker costing less than £200.
There’s little else to say of its outward appearance, other than it houses the same controls as on many Audio Pro speakers – namely for power, pairing, source selection, play/pause, volume and four pre-sets. On the back is a threaded insert, so the A10 can be wall-mounted.
The usual connections, wired and wireless, are featured, with the A10 having capacity for 3.5mm aux, Bluetooth 4.0, Apple AirPlay, wi-fi and Spotify Connect. It also supports MP3, WMA, AAC, FLAC and Apple Lossless formats.
Inside, however, much has changed from the A10’s rectangular stablemates. Not wanting to sacrifice the full body that has become a beloved aspect of its class-leading sonic character, Audio Pro has packed in a 7.5cm long-throw woofer and bolstered its output with two 11.5cm passive radiators.
It is the use of a BMR, or Balanced Mode Radiator, tweeter that is most canny, however. Among its many benefits, this flatter-faced driver has the ability to offer wider dispersion than a traditional tweeter – up to 180º in fact – and so can make the most of the A10’s cylindrical form, making it far less fussy when it comes to positioning.
Unsurprisingly, that’s one of the first things that jumps out when we switch the A10 on. We love the directness of its siblings, but the versatility and sheer spread of sound here is to be admired. It doesn’t have quite the unwavering focus, but we can move around our test room and still be treated to the same high quality sound.
Timing remains a forte. Though perhaps the A10 is a touch looser with rhythms than the Award-winning Addon C3 – understandable given the £70 discrepancy in their price tags – it snaps along with that same intensity and intelligent organisation we’ve come to expect.
Amplifier 52W Class D
Bluetooth V4.0 Aux In 3.5 mm
Dimensions (hwd) 193 x 140 x 140 mm
Audio formats MP3, WMA, AAC, FLAC, Apple Lossless
Dynamically, again, there is half a step between the two, but that’s all. The A10 is as comfortable rendering those wavering intensities as it is throwing its weight behind grand shifts and drawing back completely with a sudden break.
Audio Pro has a knack for judging balance, as well, and the A10 reflects that with a sensible spread of detailed frequencies with nothing rolled off or over-egged. The difference between this and those Award-winning boomboxes, though, is the body of the midrange. There’s nothing lightweight about the A10, but, understandably, it can’t give voices or melodies quite the weight of its counterparts.
The pay-off, though, is that wide dispersion and versatility, not to mention its price or the more traditional design, which we think will both bring Audio Pro to a different audience and offer something different to listeners who’ve already been sold on the company’s copious talent.
So even though you failed miserably with your reinvention all those years ago, don’t assume there are no exceptions to the rule. This may not look like the Audio Pro you know, but in terms of its sonic potential, the A10 is very much part of the family.
- Sound 5
- Features 5
- Build 5
See all our Audio Pro reviews