6
This content is rated TV-MA, and is for viewers 18 years or older. Are you of age?
Sorry, you are not old enough to view this content.

First Look: Phorus PR1 cheap but not cheerful

About Video Transcript

First Look: Phorus PR1 cheap but not cheerful

1:48 /

While the Play-Fi standard offers plenty of potential, the Phorus PR1 is currently too limited in its scope and performance to warrant buying over a Sonos.

Hi. This is Ty Pendlebury with the review of the Phorus RS1 Wireless Music Receiver. It's been a pretty spotty couple of years for wireless music with both Logitech Squeezebox and Sony's HomeShare bailing out. Based on my experiences for the Phorus system though, current king Sonos doesn't have anything to worry about. Phorus uses the open standard Play-Fi, which is designed to enable users to seamlessly play music from a bunch of different manufacturers wirelessly. But while it works fine with MP3s, it lacks the services, the stability and the lots of support of the all the Sonos System. Phorus RS1 Receiver is designed to be connected to an existing Hi-Fi and uses an iOS or Android app to control your music. At the moment, you're pretty much limited to the music on the device or Pandora, though the Android app also adds DLNA and internet radio. By comparison, Sonos offers dozens of streaming services. The thing that the Phorus Receiver has in its favor though is that it's $200 cheaper than the equivalent Sonos connect. But it also lacks features like Ethernet connectivity and importantly digital out. Though quality is kind of cheap too, but it's in performance that really lets the Phorus down. Stuttering audio in lots of files is common and so is the timing out of devices. Sound quality also depends on the strength of your connection and while it sounded good with an MP3, lots of its files sounded significantly worse than playing the same file on the same network through a Sonos. While I like the idea of an open wireless standard at the moment, Phorus unfortunately unable to cut it. If you're looking to buy a multi-room music player, Sonos is still the one to beat. This has been Ty Pendlebury for CNET.com.

New releases

Tech to expect in 2015
2:31 December 26, 2014
The five most-anticipated gadgets we expect to see in 2015.
Play video
Best websites for finding child care
1:01 December 26, 2014
Between holiday parties and New Year's Eve plans, it can be tough to secure a babysitter. In this Tech Minute, CNET's Kara Tsuboi reports...
Play video
What's new on Netflix in January 2015
2:08 December 25, 2014
Find out what you should add to your watch list and what other videos are disappearing in the new year.
Play video
Brian Tong's Viewer Feedback 2014
2:17 December 25, 2014
We read the e-mails, tweets, and YouTube comments from you that have helped us create the best tech videos on Earth.
Play video
XCAR Awards 2014: Best-Looking
1:31 December 24, 2014
The XCAR team has played with some amazing cars in 2014, but which will be crowned the best-looking?
Play video
LG's bare bones oven needs a little more meat
2:02 December 24, 2014
The LG LRE3021 gives reliable mid-range performance, but lacks the features you can find from other brands for the same price.
Play video
Tomorrow Daily 106: Our 'Best of 2014' Extravaganza
27:44 December 24, 2014
On today's show, we celebrate another year gone by naming our (and your) favorite tech stories, pop culture news and video games of...
Play video
The big trends to watch at CES 2015
2:55 December 24, 2014
With CES around the corner, Bridget Carey tells you what to look out for at the tech expo. Expect buzz around the smart home, virtual...
Play video