First active loudspeakers from Q Acoustics unveiled

Q Acoustics has entered the active loudspeaker market with the launch of the Q Active 200 bookshelf speakers and the Q Active 400 floorstanding speaker.

A result of the company’s 14-year loudspeaker expertise, the Q Active range has been designed from the ground up to deliver a versatile, high-resolution system that can play music from any source, such as TV, network music streamer, smartphone, laptop, and a turntable.

Users can connect both wired and wireless sources through the compact central control Hub supplied with each pair or speakers which is configured either for Google ‘Chromecast built-in’ or Amazon ‘Works with Alexa’. The hub can be connected to the home network through ethernet or over Wi-Fi.

Users can connect to wireless sources using Bluetooth, Apple AirPlay 2, Roon and Spotify Connect. The speaker range supports most streaming services, including Amazon Music, Apple Music, Deezer, Qobuz, Spotify and Tidal. Users can play and control their music directly from each platform’s native app without the need to download any additional apps.

The new Q Active speakers can also operate as a UPnP media player capable of streaming the user’s digital audio library from a computer or NAS drive.

To connect wired sources, the Control Hub features an HDMI ARC input, an optical digital input, an analogue line level input, and a subwoofer output. A built-in moving magnet phono stage allows for a turntable to connect to the Hub.

The Control Hub connects wirelessly to the Q Active speakers and the incoming audio (max source resolution 32bit/192kHz) is converted to 24-bit/96kHz hi-res audio. The wireless design allows the Control Hub to be hidden away behind a TV, in a cupboard or placed in a rack if desired. A remote control is also included with each Hub.

Control Hub & remote

Voice control is available on the Q Active range, supporting Apple Siri, Google Assistant, and Amazon Alexa, and can form part of a multiroom speaker group using AirPlay 2, Roon, Google Chromecast built-in, or Amazon Works with Alexa.

The Q Active Control Hub will be available with Google Chromecast built-in integrated at launch, with Amazon Works with Alexa available later.

Designed as a true active speaker with class D amplification, the need for an external amp or receiver is eliminated.

The Q Active 200 and Q Active 400 both feature twin Balanced Mode Radiator (BMR) drive units in an offset configuration that delivers a widescreen sound dispersion and a large sweet spot area, meaning that the same detailed and high-resolution sound is delivered no matter where in the room you are.

Both speaker models have a switch on the back to allow the user to designate whether it’s a left or right channel, while another switch tells the speaker where it is positioned in the room, for example close to a wall, in a corner or out in free space. This information allows the Q Active speakers to fine-tune its low-frequency response to deliver the best possible sound for its environment.

The Q Active 200 bookshelf speakers feature two 2.25” BMR drive units and a rear-firing 4.5” long throw subwoofer with a waveguide for low-frequency bass performance. There are six discrete amplifiers powering the Q Active 200, resulting in a total power output of 280W.

An optional Q FS75 floor stand is also available for the Q Active 200. With four legs, it eliminates unwanted vibrations from the speaker.

The Q Active 400 floorstanding speakers have the same BMR drive unit arrangement as the Q Active 200, but features eight discrete amplifiers with 440W of total power output.

Apart from the obvious taller cabinet size, the main difference with the Q Active 400 is its two rear-firing 4.5” subwoofers: one subwoofer at the top of the cabinet and one at the bottom. This arrangement neutralises the cabinet’s internal standing waves, which in turn reduces unwanted resonance and delivers a cleaner, tighter bass sound.

The Q Active 200 and Q Active 400 are available in matte white and matte black finishes.

The Q Active 200 speaker with Google Chromecast built-in is available now priced at £1,499 / €1,999 / $1,999. The Q FS75 speaker stand is available for £375 / €449 / $499. The Q Active 400 speakers with Google Chromecast built-in is available now priced at £2,299 / €2,999 / $2,999.


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