Yamaha’s wireless multiroom options expand with new MusicCast speaker and sound bar

Last year, Yamaha unveiled MusicCast, a family of wireless multiroom products aimed at offering functionality similar to Sonos systems — they’re capable of linking A/V receivers, wireless speakers, sound bars, and more — but often at a more affordable price point. Since the company introduced the first MusicCast-enabled products, the line has grown to more than 30 products that have the feature built in.

Now the family is getting even bigger with two new products. On Tuesday, Yamaha announced the WX-010 MusicCast speaker and YSP-2700 sound bar, with the former offering an option for those who want to dip a toe in the MusicCast waters without a major investment.

The WX-010 speaker is a smaller sibling to the first MusicCast product Yamaha released, the WX-030. Like that speaker, the WX-010 offers both Wi-Fi and Ethernet connectivity, with Bluetooth also included to allow the speaker to be used outside of the MusicCast ecosystem. Despite the WX-010’s small size, Yamaha is promising big sound, with a 3.5-inch woofer and 1-inch tweeter on the front, backed by dual passive bass radiators.

In addition to MusicCast streaming, a number of streaming music services including Spotify, Pandora, and Rhapsody (soon to be rebranded as Napster) are supported, as is SiriusXM satellite radio. For audiophiles, streaming from DLNA servers or NAS (network attached storage) devices allows for playing back high-resolution audio including Apple Lossless at 96 kHz/24-bit and FLAC, AIFF, and WAV files at 192 kHz/24-bit.

The MusicCast app for iOS and Android not only allows multiroom audio, but can also pair two WX-010 speakers for full stereo. The WX-010 comes in black and while varieties and will go on sale in August for $200.

While the WX-010 offers a small footprint and price tag, the YSP-2700 aims to provide all the features of a 7.1-channel surround sound system within the space-saving design of a sound bar. With three HDMI inputs and one HDMI output, the sound bar is meant to fit in where an A/V receiver would in the signal chain, ensuring that your TV doesn’t down-convert sound into two channels. HDCP 2.2 and 4K passthrough are supported, so there should be no worries about whether the sound bar will work well with your new TV.

In order to achieve immersive sound from a relatively small piece of hardware, Yamaha says the YSP-2700 uses a total of 16 speakers, each powered by its own 2-watt amplifier. These speakers are designed to reflect off of walls, and this — combined with the included wireless subwoofer — aims to give dedicated surround sound systems a run for their money. The YSP-2700 uses an included microphone and Yamaha’s IntelliBeam setup to automatically calibrate the speaker to your room.

The same wireless connectivity and streaming options featured in the WX-010 are also present here, with AirPlay also featured. The YSP-2700 sound bar will retail for $1,200, and will be available in September. For more information on both products, see the Yamaha website.

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