Sony is known for its quality and innovative products be it cameras, TVs or Sound Systems. And the latest offering from Sony, the SRS-XP700 Portable (Party) Wireless Speaker are no exception. As soon as we got our review unit last month we knew that the minute we unbox it, it will become the default speaker system for all our audio needs. A month later we can’t seem to get over it, from pairing it with the projector to enjoy home cinema sound, to plugging in mics and guitars for jamming, to simply streaming Hi-Res tracks from Apple Music. It does it all and that too wirelessly (No wires for audio or electricity thanks to the mammoth battery backup).
In the box you get the SRS-XP700 Portable Speaker, charging cable and documentation.
The SRS-XP700 Portable wireless speakers say it out loud that they are wireless party speakers. The design is not anything out of the ordinary that set them apart. But there are subtle Sony touches that make them exclusive – like the new concept LED indirect illumination lighting. While all the other Party Speakers in the market have in your eyes flashy lights, engineers at Sony have taken a different route. They have included colourful flashing lights but they are concealed and create a beautiful reverb of lights.
The other change includes the new X-Balanced speaker units for deep, punchy Sony style (MEGA) Bass. More on sound later!
In terms of dimensions, the SRS-XP700 are 14.44 x 12.32 x 27.28 inches and weigh almost 17 Kgs (16.919 kgs to be precise). Alas, there are no wheels or an easier way to move it around other than lifting it from the handles. Honestly, it’s not easy to move around if you can’t lift 15 kgs or more. So you would usually need someone to lug it around for you.
We really wanted to take it to the next-door park but dropped the idea due to the fact that I’ll have to carry around 17 Kgs. But we did take it to the roof (of course in an elevator), put it in the boot of the car, and also placed it behind the recliners to enjoy a cinema experience. It even started drizzling when we were on the roof but thankfully the ports are covered with a thick rubber section and even the buttons are rubberised.
So you can rest assured that if you manage to spill your drink or if it starts raining, you are safe thanks to the IPX4 splash resistance rating that certifies that the XP700 speakers can handle the occasional splashes and spills.
When standing or sitting vertically, all the controls/buttons for Power, Bluetooth pairing, Play/Pause, Volume Up/Down, and MegaBass are on the top.
Even though it is a wireless speaker system, you get a plethora of ports – 2 USB-A ports, one for charging mobile devices and the other for playing music, a 3.5mm input (no cable is included), and also the connection for the power cable.
All in all, you can use it in various modes (Car, Home Theatre, Party, Karaoke) thanks to its unique design and a built-in sensor that optimizes audio accordingly to maintain sound quality whether you place it horizontally or vertically.
Well, it’s a Sony! The sound is loud and clear with on-demand punchy bass thanks to the Mega Bass button. Users can further tweak the sound with the Sony Music Center app. Not only fine-tune the sound, but users can also select their favourite playlists, cue the next song, change lighting patterns, and more.
Two 6.75-inch woofers and three front-facing 2.4-inch tweeters sit behind the grille, with a single two-inch tweeter on the top panel angled to fire up and backwards. LEDs at the top and bottom of the grille deliver a light show when the speaker is in use.
They are compatible with Bluetooth 5.0 and supports AAC, SBC, and LDAC Bluetooth codecs.
We played music through Apple Music, Spotify and the Sony Music Center app. The tracks we played ranged from Brown Munde (insane bass experience), Ae Vatan – Ma Tujhe Salaam (India’s Olympic performance inspired me to do so) and Hotel California Unplugged to experience varied sound experience.
One thing is evident – MegaBass on or off, they will rock your place. The vocals are clean and clear and you can enhance them further with the EQ settings on the Sony App if you want to counterbalance the powerful bass.
The one feature that should matter in a wireless speaker is its battery life. And Sony has claimed a massive 25 hours of battery life when fully charged. But if you keep MegaBass and LED lights on, and the volume set to the maximum while streaming Bluetooth audio it
Are they smart speakers, no they are not. But they do come with not one but 2 apps that you can tinker around with. The Sony Music Center app and the Fiestable app. Both these apps are available for Android and iOS devices.
While the Sony Music Center app lets you optimise audio settings, control the music, choose lighting patterns and manage devices the Fiestable app is for creating party playlists, karaoke, and more. Both these apps need an overhaul or a massive update.
Then there is Party Connect which lets you connect up to 100 compatible speakers across the Sony portfolio to sync music and lights. Just a pair of XP-700s can shake the room, imagine putting 100 of them together.
The Unbiased Verdict – SRS-XP700
If you want to be the Guitar Hero, Karaoke King or the Party Prince of a party then the SRS-XP700 are a must-have. I have been counting days to the 15th of August so that I can announce in the neighbourhood that Karaoke King and the Party Prince has arrived. This will be the most epic Independence Day celebrations thanks to the Sony SRS-XP700 speakers and I can’t wait to share photos and video from it.
At INR 32,990 they are value-for-money for people who need big sound, but if you don’t want to spend that much and still need all the goodies then you can also consider its smaller avatar – SRS-XP500 that comes for INR 26,990. Lastly, you also get the compact boombox style SRS-XG500 that are dust and weatherproof but come at a steep price of INR 32,990 for a compact speaker. You will be able to buy any of the three new X-series speakers from August 10, 2021.
Disclaimer: We tested the Sony SRS-XP700 for 3 weeks before writing this review. All our reviews are unbiased and are published without the brand getting to read it before you guys. We don’t change our reviews on pressure from brands and that’s the reason we are not sent review units from companies like Samsung, OnePlus, Xiaomi and a few more.