Samsung R1 360 Wireless Speaker Review

Discussion in 'Hi-Fi Stereo Speakers' started by Steve Withers, Dec 29, 2015.


    1. Steve Withers

      Steve Withers
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    2. BrianCT

      BrianCT
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      A significant limitation that is not published and is not easily found on reviews or published on the web is that it does not allow multiple speakers to connect to the TV. I purchased multiple R1 Speakers in hopes of using them as rear left and right wireless speakers for my 2014 Samsung SmartTV, and advertising implies this is possible with the app and configuring the speakers to work in stereo/surround mode. Unfortunately this is not possible according to Samsung support, and The TVs only support connecting one device at a time, be it these speakers or a soundbar.

      As I spoke to Support I realized why it is not possible, since the TV is connecting via Bluetooth then sharing the audio over wireless would not be possible unless the device allowed both a bluetooth and wireless connection at the same time.

      As a tech-guy, both professionally and as a hobby, I'm somewhat confused by this, since there are two options that would make this application possible. 1) Update the speaker firmware to allow both connections at the same time. 2) Send out a software update to the TVs to allow them to tie into the system over the network (wifi or hard-wired) to allow audio to be pushed over the network; after all it's a smart tv, so it should have capabilities similar to a smart phone.

      In either case, this is a sad flaw which seems to have fix that Samsung could implement and should have by now. Samsung Support was a little tedious to try to get an answer from, why I could not pair 2+ speakers with the TV, and if there were ways of doing this, and after being transferred 4 times and asking the same thing, I was told a hub should work (assuming model
      WAM250/ZA), but the person was not completely sure it would function as intended; I asked if a soundbar would work for this application, which originally I was told was not possible, but then was referred to the HW-J7500 soundbar, which would also act as a hub; it appears to have the capability, but the rep was not 100% confident it would work as intended for connecting to the TV.

      I do like the speakers, the sound quality is decent to cover a 350sqft room, bass was better than expected, it is nice to be able to pair them together for music applications and have the same thing playing in different locations around the house or outside, and I appreciate that they connect with audio without the need of an additional paired device (for example, once setup to Pandora, you use your smartphone to connect initially, but once the connection is established the phone is no longer required like it would be with traditional bluetooth speakers that would lose connection after the phone was out of range, BUT you can still do the bluetooth connection if you were to use these off of a WIFI network.

      For my intended application these did not work, at least not with spending more on another product that Samsung's staff can't say with confidence would work either. For using them as music speakers they are pretty damn good, styling and size aren't invasive and they pack a lot of clear sound into that small package, and I would rate them about 7.5/10
       
    3. Nicotine

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      thanks for the heads up, was planning to buy a couple to use as stereo speakers for the tv, guess i will be saving my money
       
    4. BrianCT

      BrianCT
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      Oddly enough, I ordered the hub on eBay tonight for $20. I'll let you know if it ended up working.
       
    5. BrianCT

      BrianCT
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      The Hub did not work for me. I spent another hour or so talking to support, and they have said it will work for TVs that have the multiroom option, which apparently mine does not have, but the rep could not tell me where that option exists. I explained:
      The area I am going to is - - - Menu -> System -> Device Manager -> SoundShare Settings
      to try and figure out where this mystery option is, and the rep replied "Please note that, in that you can add the devices to the TV, however you can use one device at a time." To which I replied "I'm aware of that, which was not explained to me when I bought the speakers, so (like I said) I asked support how I can get it to connect to both speakers, and was told with the HUB, and you also said this was accurate, so why can't I connect?"

      Anyhow, it is not working for me, and I filed a formal complaint, I can't say it won't work with a different TV, mine is Model Code UN55ES7500FXZA Version # TS01, but Samsung has been less than helpful considering I asked if this setup would work from the beginning, they said yes, spoke to multiple people since I could not get it to work, bought a Hub that was useless, and this last rep (maybe the 10th one I've spoken to giving the same details about my TV model and purpose) finally says it won't work for my TV. More annoyed at the time wasted than the money, I had done my due diligence to verify this setup before purchasing anything, and I really feel like Samsung reps don't know their own products well enough to support these...
       
    6. timbo46

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      Thanks for the feedback, i found this thread as i am considering buying at least one of the 360 speakers. I have checked in the menu on my H series Samsung, and there is a separate section for sound settings, including a multiroom option so you were correct that it is a software restriction.
      I will update if and when I buy a pair, as it seems an ideal solution for boosting the tv sound.
       
    7. Spraggle

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      Just to confirm that if your TV or Blu-ray supports Multiroom, you can use multiple speakers as advertised - I have several of the previous gen Samsung speakers (1x m3, 2x m5), an H6500 TV, a BD J7500 Blu-ray and an HTS H7500WM. I can (but did only as a test) use the M5s and M3 in any combination for a front LCR. It uses Wi-Fi Direct, which is why your TV couldn't do the business @BrianCT.

      This is one thing they can't yet do - you don't get the option to add rear speakers until you've filled the fronts - from the app with three speakers, I can only create stereo pairs - with 4 speakers I could create 4 speaker surround (FLFR and RRRL) , and with 5, full surround (no sub). From the TV or the Blu-ray, I can do 3channel surround (as alluded to before), but again, no rear speakers can be introduced until fronts have been filled.
      Adding a sound bar to the mix means the sound bar can cover LCR duties, and then your R1s can act as rears.
      The hub is actually almost useless unless you don't already have a 5ghz Wi-Fi network. Other than that it just simplifies the addition of speakers, which is not needed at all - with the app, if you have a speaker on the network already, adding a new speaker will ask you if you want to copy the settings from the existing speaker directly to the new one.

      The HTS can be grouped in to the system as a Multiroom speaker for grouping only (you can't add it as a Left or Right, etc), but it too can use the M or R speakers for output. It can also be used as a source for the other speakers , so cable, CDs and apps can be sent around the house.

      The Blu-ray can be used as a source too.

      Appreciate that this is not what you wanted, but I did want to pass on my positive experience with the Multiroom suite.
       
    8. Kallb123

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      Are these speakers even suitable for left/right surround usage? Their 360 degree output makes them seem unsuitable and certainly far more expensive than most options on the market.

      I might pick one of these up due to the £100 cashback from my TV. What are the third-party stands that Steve mentions? I can't see any available to buy.
       
    9. Spraggle

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      I think the R1s were the ones intended for rear use, and they are pretty small unit - so I don't think they were the ones with designated stands. The ones I saw that had stands were the R6 and R7, which are much larger, and I believe aimed at filling a room on their own.

      Sticking a 360 speaker behind you is going to be.... heck, I don't know how to think it through. If you have a wall behind you, there's a chance you could cause stray echoes, but only of rear sounds, which aren't massively utilised anyway. Then again, if the wall is close, they'll just act like normal speakers, just less directional. overall, I imagine them to act more like a Di/tripole (at a guess), because the speaker constantly behaves like it's pointing at you, no matter your listening position.

      If I were creating a 5 speaker set, I'd go back and get 2x M5s, 1x M7 and 2x R1s. Would be an interesting set up!
       
    10. Kallb123

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      Surely these aren't actually intended for home theatre use (surround or otherwise). Being wireless is cool, but the 360 degree sound and high price just doesn't make sense. Wired speakers and an AVR would perform much better for far less money in this area.

      They seem much more suited to music for parties and getting good sound into multiple rooms.
       
    11. Spraggle

      Spraggle
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      The previous generation were designed with flexibility in mind - I've got 2x M5s and an M3, along with a Samsung hts H7500WM and BD J7500 for Multiroom purposes. Normally, I have one M5 in the dining room, one M5 in the bedroom and the m3 in the loft room, while the hts is on front room duties and the BD is in the basement cinema as the source. If I have a BBQ, I move the two m5s outside as a stereo pair - only need to roll out the 2-gang reel and them, job done!
      I have given it a go with the m3 and 2x m5 as a 3ch (LCR) from the Blu-ray player, but it was only a test - my proper 5.1 system is normally plugged in to that Blu-ray ;-)
      In answer to your question - the M series speakers were positioned as possible 5.0 wireless surround set up - but not really seen Samsung push that angle this time round - they're more aiming at 'lifestyle' markets.
       
    12. mrobbo

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      Hiya. Sorry to bump this thread. Basic question. I have ONE R1, KS7000 TV and an HW-K651 soundbar. Can I use the single R1 with the soundbar to create a rudimentary surround sound set up, or would I need at least one further R1 to achieve this? I've tried the app and TV settings but no can do so far.
       
    13. Dean66Essex

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      I have 3 of the Samsung R-Lite (Basically the same as the R1) and love the sound they produce for my small house, however Although they work perfect with the Samsung Multiroom app on android, does anyone know of such app for my windows 10 phone or windows 10 PC. The Android Multiroom app allows me to group the speakers and have them simultaneously pumping out sound but my PC only allows me to select one device through the wifi. Having them all as PC speakers would be awesome but i know not of any other app that allows me to do this. All help will be appreciated. Thanks in advance :)
       

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