Ikea Symfonisk desk lamp Gen 2 sensible take a look at: extra mild, extra sound

RRP $ 179.00

I am nonetheless not satisfied that placing a Sonos wi-fi speaker within the base of a desk lamp is a good thought, however if you wish to disguise the supply of your music, the brand new model of Ikea’s Symfonisk desk lamp might be the simplest and most greatest cheap means to do that.

Here is a fast take a look at this quirky little man.

Goodbye, mushroom

Ikea Symphonic table lamp (Gen 2).The Ikea Symfonisk desk lamp of the second technology with an elective glass shade. Simon Cohen / Digital Tendencies

The primary model of the Symfonisk desk lamp, which debuted together with the Symfonisk bookshelf speaker, discovered lots of people sort of bizarre. The mix of the bulbous physique and bulbous lampshade made from frosted glass gave it a mushroom-like look and jogged my memory loads of Sackboy, the protagonist in Sony’s LittleBigPlanet collection of PlayStation video games.

Ikea has apparently fastidiously taken observe of this response and given the second-generation lamp a extra refined (learn: extra conservative) design. The plastic saucer that housed the sport controls within the first model is gone. The bottom is wider however shorter, and the frosted lampshade has been changed with two new choices: a big, two-piece hurricane-style glass shade and a cloth shade. Our black take a look at gadget was accompanied by the glass display possibility.

IKEA Symfonisk table lamp with WiFi speaker.The unique Symfonisk desk lamp. Ikea

Ikea additionally thought it acceptable to delete the just about comically massive plastic button that protruded from the facet of the unique. It appeared prefer it was each an on / off swap and a dimmer for the lightbulb – nevertheless it simply turned the lights on and off. It has been changed by an nearly invisible digital button on the very backside of the bottom. It seems to be so much cleaner however comes with a small penalty. The unique button had two bodily positions. When you had it within the “on” place and there was an influence outage, the lightbulb would activate once more as quickly as the ability got here again.

Ikea Sonos Symfonisk table lamp in four color and shade variants.Ikea

However the brand new model would not have this bodily locked mode. Within the occasion of an influence failure, all the lamp is switched off. And when the ability returns, the lamp can be within the off mode. Now you might say, “So what? Simply flip it again on. “However when you’re utilizing certainly one of Ikea’s sensible dwelling Tradfri lightbulbs, as the corporate suggests, you will not have the ability to management the lightbulb once more till you go over and bodily flip it again on. That is not very a lot comfy.

That little annoyance however, the results of the adjustments is a bit of ornament that I believe much more folks need of their houses. As an alternative of attracting curious glances, it simply seems to be like a desk lamp, which is what it is all about, in spite of everything.

Hidden buttons

Ikea Symphonic table lamp (Gen 2) controls.Simon Cohen / Digital Tendencies

These saucer-mounted sport controls did not go away, however they have been relocated – to the again of the bottom. As a part of an effort to make the desk lamp speaker extra lamp and fewer speaker, it really works. There are just about no tell-tale indicators that it’s something aside from a lamp. However from a usability viewpoint, it isn’t that pleasant. Until you wish to go to the again of the lamp (which you will not have the ability to relying in your placement), it’s important to use these controls by your personal feeling. Not that it is arduous: the form of the buttons helps so much, with a flat floor for play / pause / skip skipping, a convex floor for growing the quantity, and a concave floor for lowering the quantity. It is the identical scheme because the lately launched Symfonisk Image Body speaker.

Extra mild bulb choices

Ikea additionally sensibly realized that the tiny candelabra lamp holder it tucked into the primary model did not give folks many choices when it got here to lightbulbs. Just about any commonplace mild bulb suits into the brand new E26 / 27 socket, however you must positively observe the warning: No mild bulbs or halogen bulbs, in any other case you threat “SERIOUS THERMAL DAMAGE”. Stick to a 15 watt LED mild bulb or much less and you ought to be fantastic. Ikea features a 4.3 watt 450 lumen LED bulb to get you began.

Simpler setup because of Sonos

Sonos, the mind behind the acoustics and software program facet of the Symfonisk lineup, has made an already quite simple setup even simpler. Join the desk lamp to the wall with the braided energy twine provided after which begin the Sonos S2 app. It is going to routinely detect the brand new speaker and ask you to finish the setup, which takes an entire 30 seconds because of Sonos’ intelligent use of the NFC chip in your telephone. Simply faucet the again of the speaker together with your telephone when the app prompts you and that is it. And iPhone customers get the additional benefit of AirPlay 2 built-in, which implies you’ll be able to skip the Sonos app solely if you would like (however do not – the Sonos app is nice, particularly when you’ve got multiple Sonos suitable product). .

Spherical sound

Ikea Symfonisk table lamp (Gen 2) next to Sonos One.Simon Cohen / Digital Tendencies

The desk lamp has additionally modified by way of sound. Neither Ikea nor Sonos have dealt intensively with the subject, nevertheless it can’t be ignored that the speaker produces a extra diffuse, much less directional sound than the primary model. When the unique mannequin debuted, its internals have been mentioned to be very near the now-discontinued Sonos Play: 1. They definitely sounded very comparable within the take a look at.

However the brand new model would not sound just like the Play: 1 or its successor, the Sonos One SL. These audio system have a tendency to supply a centered audio beam. Flip it away from you and its sound will change. The desk lamp, however, is way more forgiving, with a decidedly ambient high quality that distributes the sound within the room.

That is each good and never so good. The great factor is which you can actually place the desk lamp wherever and its sound will not change considerably. There’s nonetheless a entrance and a again, however the sound emits in a extra round sample. For individuals who simply need a single speaker in a given room, be it the lounge, workplace or bed room, it is a good factor – the brand new model fills the room you have got chosen extra successfully than the unique. However the identical acoustic properties that power the sound in additional instructions additionally cut back the readability, particularly within the greater frequencies.

Ikea solely despatched me the one lamp to check out, so I could not take a look at the stereo pairing (Sonos could be very strict – solely two acoustically similar Sonos merchandise are allowed to be stereo pairing), however I believe that is extra open to the signature the desk lamp doesn’t produce such a exact stereo picture. If one thing like that is vital to you, you may be higher off with a set of Sonos One SLs.

Do not take that as a heavy criticism – like all Sonos audio system, the desk lamp nonetheless sounds actually good, with a much bigger and bolder presence than its dimension suggests. Heat and resonant bass supplies the all-important massive speaker sound, and regardless of a little bit of mud within the higher vary, there’s nonetheless loads of definition within the center and higher mids. You may make this factor actually loud too, with the slightest trace of distortion proper on the high of the dial.

The judgment

Whereas a desk lamp that doubles as a wi-fi speaker is not for everybody, Ikea has made the idea extra interesting by giving Symfonisk consumers extra design choices and a much less controversial form. If you’re on the lookout for an inexpensive means so as to add nice sound to your private home with out including seen audio system, the brand new Symfonisk desk lamp is an excellent answer.

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