Unless you’re buying into a high-end sound system, it doesn’t really matter what kind of speakers you have attached to your PC as long as they work. Or at least, that’s what I thought before I started using Microlab’s H30 speakers.
Looks and Features
The H30s look rather plain from the outset thanks to a somewhat dull “white box” design that doesn’t really make them stand out. Volume, treble and bass dials adorn the right of the master speaker with stereo inputs and a power switch on its rear, all features to be expected of the average speaker set.
The only real stand-out is the NFC (Near-Field Communication) tag on the top of the master speaker, a feature that allows the speaker to pair wirelessly with NFC-capable smartphones and tablets. The best part is connecting via NFC only requires tapping the NFC tag with the appropriate mobile device, which immediately pairs them and starts streaming audio playing on the phone/tablet to the speakers.
The Microlab H30 speakers can also pair wirelessly with gadgets that support Bluetooth, but of course the pairing process requires more than a simple tap to complete.
It’s the first time that NFC has made a tangible difference for me on any peripheral. Being able to arrive at my desk in the morning and change from listening to a song on my phone to hearing it on the H30s with just a tap was an absolute pleasure.
While they may not be audiophile-quality speakers, the Microlab H30 speakers emit fantastic sound for general day-to-day use. The adjustable bass and treble let you set up the sound the way you want without sacrificing on overall volume. And they’re loud, too. Certainly loud enough to breathe life into music, movies and games played through regular notebook speakers.
Sound quality over Bluetooth is as good as with a physical cable, with music still streaming perfectly even when the paired phone is charging in another room.
If you’re looking for a decent set of office speakers for music while you work, or to give games and movies on your entertainment PC a bit more of a kick, the H30s will do nicely. They’re even good for outside entertainment/braai areas, as being able to pair with phones over NFC means you can remotely-manage the playlist with your phone while you entertain, and the sound they put out is easily loud and clear enough to keep your guests grooving to your tunes.
There’s a small price premium attached for the NFC and Bluetooth functionality – many sets of PC/office speakers go for less than two grand – but it can’t be overstated how useful not being tethered to your sound source by cables can be, a differential that makes Microlab’s H30s well worth the extra cash.
Price: R2 150