Mass Fidelity Rad equally at home with multiroom music or your next camping trip

The Mass Fidelity Rad is a portable Bluetooth speaker which offers water-resistance and the ability to work in a multi-room music setup.

Ty Pendlebury
Ty Pendlebury Editor
Ty Pendlebury is a journalism graduate of RMIT Melbourne, and has worked at CNET since 2006. He lives in New York City where he writes about streaming and home audio.
Expertise Ty has worked for radio, print, and online publications, and has been writing about home entertainment since 2004. He majored in Cinema Studies when studying at RMIT. He is an avid record collector and streaming music enthusiast. Credentials Ty was nominated for Best New Journalist at the Australian IT Journalism awards, but he has only ever won one thing. As a youth, he was awarded a free session for the photography studio at a local supermarket.
2 min read

Two years ago Canadian company Mass Fidelity introduced the $600 Core -- a networkable Bluetooth speaker that offered an ultrawide soundstage from a small box. Today, the company announced its follow-up, the Rad (the company stylizes this as "raD", shorthand for radial dispersion), which uses the same networking system to communicate with other speakers in your house but is available at a lower price. While the Core used "Wave Field Synthesis" to create its stereo trick -- which really did work based on our experience -- the Rad uses a much simpler "radial" soundfield.

Mass Fidelity says the water-resistant product was a result of customers' requests for a smaller, more rugged version that could be used outdoors or in a bathroom.The Rad is a little smaller than the Core at 5 inches square by 3 inches high, and it offers a five-speaker array, with four 1.5-inch drivers and a single 3-inch bass driver. The company says it's capable of a frequency response from 75Hz to 20KHz and can be connected to the Core Wireless Subwoofer for even deeper bass.


The Mass Fidelity Rad (left) and the Core

Mass Fidelity

The Rad connects via Bluetooth to your portable device and is then able to link to up to eight other Rads or Cores in the home via a proprietary 5GHz wireless connection. The unit includes an onboard battery that can provide eight hours of playback as well as charge portable devices over a USB port. If you don't want to connect over Bluetooth, you can also use the 3.5mm input.

We took a quick listen to the unit -- it was apparent that the (more expensive) Core was demonstrably better at creating a stereo field, which the Rad wasn't able to do convincingly. From our demo, the Rad sounded like a standard . We would really need to test it to give more specific impressions.

The unit is available for the next month on Indiegogo for $189 and will be sold at retail for $300. It's expected to launch in April 2017.

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