The Aether Cone is a very stylish well designed speaker with an unusual design. The device is naturally shaped like a cone and the large circular surface is the speaker grill but also acts as play/pause with a tap in the center and if you spin the whole front it skips/rewinds a track (with Spotify connect).
On the top of the device you will find two copper volume buttons and on the back there is a large copper cap to the speaker which has the power input, on/off switch and a microphone. Lastly, the bottom of the device has a large rubber pad which keeps it planted on a surface despite the unusual shape of the speaker.
Overall the speaker is very heavy for its size which is probably due to the large 3 inch woofer and the battery needed to power the 20W amplifier and means the speaker feels premium and of high quality. The matt finish plastic couple with the copper accents adds to this very premium feel.
How does it sound?
For my sound tests; I set the speaker on a solid oak table in the center of a fairly small room about 2 meters from where I sat to listen. The room is soft furnished with a carpet and thick curtains. I find this room particularly good for my Hi-Fi listing as the there is very little echo and the room absorbs a lot of the undesirable sound reflections. This is my real world reference for this speaker.
Sound quality is quite remarkable for such a small speaker. Despite it’s size, the Cone produces a very well rounded sound with a very vibrant mid range. The bass is deep and wholesome and only over-powering in some songs but the high ends are clear and not distorted by the base, you can clearly see why their RRP was pitched at £300.
The sound is quite directional and so this speaker is best suited to the corner of a room or directly in front of you. Having said this, the sound at quite extreme angles to the speaker is still full ranged and appealing to the ear unlike some more directional speakers that suffer at the mid and high end when listened to not head on.
Why is it so cheap now?
Aether teamed up with RDIO for exclusivity on the Cone, and exciting features such as voice control and smart playlists were one of it’s bug selling factors. Unfortunately, in November 2015, RDIO went bust. Due to the deal with RDIO, Aether was also forced to close, but not before giving the Cone a final update, changing its functionality to allow it to support AirPlay, Spotify connect and function as a normal bluetooth speaker.
So, thanks to LaptopsDirect you can now purchase this speaker for around 10% the original price!
I actually won one of these speakers some time ago in an Instructables competition which I entered with my Wine Glass Caddy. However, due to Aether closing its doors Instructables offered me an Amazon gift card instead. Now some time in the future, I am happy my path has crossed with this little speaker. It’s quality and £300 premium feel offered at such a low price tag mean it really is an exquisite bargain!
Stay tuned for a tear-down review to see what’s going on inside the elegant shell of the Cone.