HAME WiFi Receiver sends music throughout the house.
I have tested many headphones and Bluetooth speaker sets over the past few months. I have found that Bluetooth seems to work wonderfully for a pair of headphones/earbuds when your smart device is near you. However, Bluetooth is limited by a distance of about 30 feet and tends to be reduced by objects. This does not work as well for portable speakers if you need to be at a longer distance. Bluetooth has been fine for nearly every situation that I have needed. However there are a few advantages for WiFi over Bluetooth: Higher Bandwidth, better range, lower latency, higher bit-rate, better security. WiFi operates at a speed of about 11mbps vs 720 kbps for Bluetooth.
I have received the HAME WiFi Receiver. It arrived in a clear plastic cylinder, sealed with a few pieces of tape along the top. Removing the tape, the lid flips up easily and the device is liberated. Nestled in the bottom of the packaging, you will find the instruction manual and a USB cable to plug the device into a power supply (not provided). There are no other accessories beyond the instruction manual. The device is shaped like 3/4 of an egg, white and sleek. It reminds me of something that Apple would release, with its clean lines and a curves.
The instruction manual, an accordion style of circles, is written in quite choppy English. It begins by demonstrating the included accessories, the Music Receiver, a USB power cable and this manual. It is kind of funny to see the manual mention itself in the third person. The device is called the Music Egg and receives an input of 5V 1A, measures at 88.5 X 87 X 70mm and weighs at 2.5 ounces (70g). Continuing through the manual, you are shown diagrams of the installation. The diagrams actually work quite well. There is a LED indicator on the front of the package just beneath the HAME logo. Flipping the device around, the manual demonstrates the AUX audio output, DC power input and AUX input ports. It is important to note this device does not come with a wall charger, even though one is shown on the product installation figure of the manual. Essentially you plug any device (TV, Smart Phone, Tablet, MP3 player) into the AUX in port via 3.5mm RCA, 3.5mm to 3.5mm cable. You then connect the device via AUX out to the headphone port on your speakers.
The next step is to download the App. You can go to the IOS APP store or Google Play Store and download Leting Global music App or you can use a QR Reader and scan the QR code in the manual (my personal choice). Plug your device into the AUX in, plug the music egg into the AUX in port of the speaker. Turn over the music egg and press a paper clip into the small hole. You will see a red LED, hear a beep from the speaker and then a female robotic voice will announce “Configuring network,” followed by “network connection is successful”.
Open the app and you will see “speaker,” “Music Box,” “Wi-Fi Music Receiver.” Check on music receiver (looks like the egg). You will then need to input your WIFI password and then click next. Beyond the initial setup, I had very little use for the app. Likely you will also have very little use for the app as well. However, the app will allow you access to your Pandora account or you can check TuneIn app and link to some of your local radio stations. There was a single installed recognizable song, when I tried to play music. It had Angel from Sarah McLachlin and a few other Chinese selections. Beyond this, I had no use for the app.
Next, open the music app. From inside the music app, swipe up and you will see an option in the middle to AirPlay (a rectangle with an upward arrow in it). Click this and it will play on your speaker. If this does not work, you may need to open up settings, click wifi and select HameMusic_XXXX(your number will display) and then enter the super secret password listed in the instruction manual. Seriously, think Spaceballs security for this one.
The magic of the device is being able to AirPlay my iTunes library over my computer speakers from the other side of the house. I have never had anything set up to AirPlay and this is an amazing feature. Bluetooth is limited by proximity. The Wifi is limited by the extent of the network. My criticism falls on the app and not the device. Most of the app was non functional, which was a disappointment. Another issue I found was that there was some lag with the connection. When I started the song in the app, there was a considerable pause before any sound was heard through the the speaker. Interestingly, I noted that the sound started out low and increased as the song progressed. Once the device is set up, you do not need to have it connected to the egg. I wish that the device came with at least one 3.5mm to 3.5mm plug. Without these plugs, you cannot set up and use this device. Luckily, I had 3 of these from other devices.
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