Bayan Audio Bayan 7 £300
19th Jan 2012 | 09:30
Can this very modern-looking, high-end speaker dock put in a 21st-century performance?
The Bayan Audio Bayan 7 is a curious-looking speaker dock which looks more like an oven that slots into a wall than a high-end iOS speaker dock (a black version is also available). But on closer inspection, it soon reveals its true purpose.
Set into its clear acrylic facia is a hefty bass subwoofer that also acts as its stand. The rest of the sound is supplied by twin 5cm full-range speakers and two 2.5cm tweeters.
The Bayan 7 has two amplifiers, one for the bass and one for the middle and high-end sounds. Altogether, the five speakers deliver 120W of power, so it won't leave you short of volume. Its comprehensive collection of drivers also gives it a very wide frequency response.
Around the front there's two 30-pin dock connectors, which fit every compatible device except the iPad. You can charge an Apple tablet using the USB port on the back of the Bayan 7, and play its sounds by connecting the supplied 3.5mm AUX cable (which can also connect to your Mac or any audio device with a headphone socket). But you can't use the rather fussy remote's iPod controls when listening to an iPad.
The hand controller also lets you set the volume, adjust bass and treble independently and switch between Music Mode and Vocal Mode, which is well tuned for spoken word media such as audio books.
Bayan 7 is suited for most genres of music, but if you like intense, room-shaking bass, it might not be for you. Although deep, rich and natural, its bottom end won't drown the mix even when turned up to maximum.
Its excellent stereo separation belies the proximity of its speakers, though the sound isn't as three-dimensional as it might be. But where Bayan's high-end speaker dock really scores is in its crystal-clear reproduction.
The Bayan 7 is not a speaker dock that looks good in any room, but you can't fault the sound. Whether its rather idiosyncratic appearance is a good thing or a bad thing is very much a matter of taste.
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