Google promises great things when it comes to the sound quality of the successor to the original Google Home smart speaker, but while this is an improvement, it doesn’t bounce in the performance we hoped for. However, it works very well as a smart speaker thanks to good microphones and clear audio output and is certainly good enough to listen to background music.
Easi Review of Google Nest Audio
Nest Audio is the successor to Google Home, Google’s first smart speaker, and much has happened in the smart speaker world in the four years since its launch.
At the time we saw several other speakers and smart displays from Google, a name change designed to integrate these products with the Nest brand and – possibly most importantly – a range of smart speakers from other brands with Google Assistant integration.
This means that Google has not only released a new product that needs to be improved on the old model and fit the existing product range – Nest Audio also has to compete with a similar range of similar products from brands such as Harman Kardon, Sonos. LG, JBL and much more – these are brands that know what they’re doing when it comes to the home sound system.
That’s probably one of the reasons why sound quality is a big focus for Google in this product – so much so that it adds the phrase “Voice” in the new speaker’s name. Therefore, it is even more disappointing that the sound quality does not really meet our expectations.
It sounds pretty good with uncomplicating pop music, but other genres reveal the lack of detail in the high-key and medium sounds that make the tracks sparkly and the sound muffled.
On the plus side, Google Nest Audio works very well as a smart speaker – the assistant sounds loud and clear and takes commands very well. It also has some useful features, such as Google Duo voice search, that can help you stay in touch with your family.
Google Nest Audio can do a pretty good job as a smart speaker and extra Wi-Fi connected speaker for the kitchen or any other small room. However, if sound quality is important to you, it’s worthing to keep in mind that you don’t need to spend much more to get a speaker that rewards you with a superior listening experience.
Price And Release Date
Google Nest Audio can currently be pre-ordered through the Google Store and a number of other retailers, with the release date set for October 5 (October 15 in the UK).
It will refund you $99/£89/US$149 and while there are two colours (Chalk and Coal) available in Europe, US buyers will be able to choose from three additional varieties (Sage, Sand and Sky).
If you want to take advantage of Nest Audio’s multi-room smart audio or stereo audio feature, Google is currently offering discounts when you purchase a Home Entertainment package (including two Nest Audio speakers, one Nest Hub Max, and one Chromecast). Google TV), Voice Everywhere package (two Google Nest Mini speakers), and Room-Filling Audio package (two Nest Audio speakers).
The price is slightly lower than Google Home’s original launch price, but higher than the current price of that speaker (if you can still find one for sale). It should also be noted that you can buy Google Nest Hub for approximately the same price, and google nest mini is offered much cheaper if sound quality is not your highest priority.
Design of Google Nest Audio
In contrast to Nest Mini, which retained the design of the Home Mini it replaced last year, Google has gone into a whole new design for Google Home’s successor.
This time, the entire unit is covered with a fabric grille to match Google’s other smart speakers. This straightforward plan – not at all like the deodorizer like Google Home – functions admirably for the littler Google speaker, however this makes the bigger speaker resemble a featureless stain on your desk when not in use. On the other hand, it’s very discreet, so it should fit well with most décor.
It’s also worth noted that the new Nest Audio is made of 70% recycled material and, according to Google, each unit will remove 1.2 500ml of plastic bottles from land dumps, which is frankly a good thing.
While nothing about the design suggests this, there are actually three different touchpads on top of the speaker, and from left to right these allow you to turn down the volume, stop playing and start it, and increase the volume.
The only physical control on the speaker is the key in the back, which allows you to mute the microphone to make sure your Nest Audio doesn’t listen to you when you don’t want to.
Other than that, on the front, there are four signature LEDs that light up when you interact with Google Assistant, and that’s it.
Google nest Audio Performance
As mentioned, sound quality seems to be the main focus for Google with Nest Audio. According to Google, the new speaker is 75% higher than Google Home and has 50% more bass. That may be true, but we still can’t say it’s offering the sound quality upgrade we hoped for.
To be fair, Nest Audio sounds pretty good listening to uncompliced pop music like Dagny’s Somebody or The Weeknd’s Blinding Lights. Such parts are quite well remanufactured and the bass is definitely available and provides a solid foundation without being overwhelming.
However, we can’t understand why a quick comparison with the small and portable JBL Flip 5 reveals that the second can provide significantly lower frequencies, and why Google can’t bring in more lower ends than its new speaker. .
More complex melodies prove to be more of a challenge for the speaker, and what’s surprising is that there’s not really bass that disappoints – it’s more of a nod, it misses some of the sparkle we’d hoped for, and that’s a bit muffled by the sound scene.
At the same time, loud medium sounds miss some details, and while listening to a classic like Fleetwood Mac’s Rhiannon, the vocals are not given exactly the focus they deserve, while some of the space and details are suppressed by the exploding bottom. mids.
The missing high-tiz can be upgraded to this setting in the Google Home App and somehow restored, but there are no adjustments to the middle, so you can’t do much about the lack of detail.
Sounding also shifts the balance to slightly more high-ups, but this also brings with it another problem as the sound becomes hard and grainy. We found it particularly remarkable listening to Björk’s Army of Me, with an unsymug ringtone on the vocals that really shouldn’t be there.
Obviously, sound quality is not generally terrible, and Nest Audio can give you an enjoyable listening experience at mid-volume levels – keep in mind that you don’t have to pay much more for a speaker that can offer more. Glittering high-tiz without bass, detail and hardness.
However, nest audio works very well as a smart speaker. The voice assistant is uproarious and clear and can be handily heard regardless of whether you’re not near the speaker. The three microphones also did a good job of getting our voices in the middle of both loud music and other noise in the room.
Experience and Features
Your Google Nest Audio is set up with the Google Home app, and connecting to your Wi-Fi and configuring your Google Assistant settings is quick and simple. From there, you’re ready to command, ask questions, and play music, and if you’ve used a smart assistant before, it all works exactly as you expect.
Through the Google Home App, you can assign the speaker to a specific room in your home (useful if you want to set up a multi-room audio system), set filters for content, and use active night mode. It’s also possible to combine two Nest Audio units into one stereo pair – configurations with other Nest speakers are possible, but limited to single audio, but the ability to add Nest Audio to a multi-room layout is a great touch.
Google Nest Audio has an automatic EQ that adjusts the speaker to ambient audio and adjusts the sound depending on whether you listen to music or speech on podcasts, but this is difficult because it happens automatically and in the background. And – going back to our problems with sound quality, it doesn’t have to improve the music listening experience that much, but the sounds are at least clear and loud.
Reasons to buy Google Nest Audios
Buy or Not
- You want a simple and compact smart speaker
- You want a smart speaker for the kitchen or bedroom
- You want a capable smart speaker
Don’t Buy if
- You’re being picky about sound quality
- You want the sound that fills a big room.
- Looking for an interesting design
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