Better than Wi-Fi Sound Quality
Atlantic Technology just released the FS-252 powered bookshelf speakers that feature SKAA wireless technology for receiving and transmitting high quality audio. Derived from the pro music industry, SKAA is a standard designed for audio creating a dedicated ecosystem that far surpasses Wi-Fi in terms of sound quality, distance, ease-of-use and reliability.
Priced at $749 a pair, the FS-252 active 2-way stereo bookshelf speakers claim to offer a full and deep sound, ideal for music in one room or as multi-room sets around the home. For home theater use, they are acoustically matched to work in systems with Atlantic Technology Sound Bars and LCR speakers.
The FS-252 can be connected to a wide variety of analog media sources (CD players, TVs, etc) via various wired connections and wireless digital media sources equipped with Bluetooth or SKAA transmitters – a capability that sets them apart from other multi-room systems. A SKAA media source may be any product equipped with SKAA such as another FS-252 or any audio product with a SKAA transmitter/adapter added. Small, low-cost SKAA digital transmitters, adapt any analog or digital audio device to affordably, quickly and easily add SKAA wireless capability. This includes PC, MAC and NAS – and portable iOS, Android or Blackberry devices can be turned into a SKAA transmitter with adapters for USB-A, micro-USB, USB-C (coming soon), or iOS Lightning. Digital TOSLINK and coax S/PDIF plus stereo analog to SKAA transmitters are also available.
Benefits of SKAA Technology
Wi-Fi and Bluetooth were originally developed for data networking and phone use then later adapted to entertainment audio. Music streaming is very demanding on Wi-Fi network bandwidth revealing many weaknesses including sound quality, interference, dropouts, variable latency or signal delay and limited signal range. Also, their continuously variable high latency, creates A/V lip-sync issues making wireless speakers unsuitable for TV, film and video games. Plus, Wi-Fi network set-up and connection processes include passwords and special router configurations that can make setting up and operating multiple home Wi-Fi audio devices complex, slow and clumsy. While Bluetooth is easier to connect it has a more limited range than Wi-Fi, is also subject to interference and is incapable of multi-room operation.
The good news is that SKAA eliminates all issues of other wireless audio systems. SKAA is a new wireless standard purpose built from the ground up to work seamlessly in all Hi-Fi applications; whole house, home theater, portable, pro-audio and automotive. SKAA is a cousin of “PAW” or Pro Audio Wireless, proven for years in demanding live concert performances by pro musicians world-wide to reliably stream instruments and singers in perfect sync with high-quality sound pro musicians and audiences demand.
SKAA audio is always clear, full-frequency and with high dynamic range delivering sound quality comparable to wired systems. It is perfect for movie and games eliminating lip-sync issues, with an un-perceivable 36 millisecond fixed low-latency signal that’s 4 to 5 times lower than Bluetooth’s variable 120-200 ms latency, and 50 to 80 times lower than Wi-Fi’s variable 2,000 to 3,000 ms latency. The variable latency creates a perceptible, out-of-sync audio shifting between multi-room Wi-Fi speakers while SKAA’s low 36 ms fixed latency delivers clear, unified multi-room audio with 0.04 ms precision between speakers.
SKAA delivers a robust signal up to a 150 foot range using the worldwide open 2.4 GHz band. It’s reliable because of its patented Walking Frequency Diversity™ (or WFD) channel-hopping technology with error correction eliminating interference, clicks, pops or dropouts even in the noisiest RF environments common in tech-laden homes, apartments, businesses or even busy trade shows.
No special app, network, Wi-Fi set-up, passwords or pairing is needed to connect SKAA devices; just press one button to connect any SKAA speaker, receiver or headphone to whichever audio source you desire.
SKAA is an international wireless standard that ensures all products carrying the SKAA logo are 100% compatible across a growing number of products and brands. A diverse eco-system is quickly emerging from Atlantic Technology and other companies that will allow consumers to easily create a variety of compatible home and portable wireless entertainment systems for inside and outside the home that are interference and hassle-free, without sonic compromise.
It’s easy to add optional plug-and-play SKAA transmitters to home and mobile devices turning any analog or digital audio device into a SKAA transmitter, able to simultaneously stream audio to other home SKAA speakers, headphones or receivers.
For SKAA transmitters used with the FS-252, a free optional App called SKAA cmd is available for iOS, Android, Mac and PC. This gives a transmitter customizable multi-room operation such as setting up group control or selective muting of speakers around the home.
The FS-252 includes a 25 watt-per-channel class-D amp optimized to the speakers in elegant high-gloss piano black, resonance-free MDF cabinets with component audio feet. Each has two long-throw 3.5-inch composite polypropylene drivers in an M-T-M, D’Appolito array with a .75-inch silk dome tweeter offset for great stereo imaging. Bottom firing four-inch passive radiators extend bass to create a surprisingly big sound from the small package. Removable acoustically transparent cloth grilles give a finished look.
The system’s “right channel” back panel includes all audio inputs and outputs, a master power on/off switch, a power cord receptacle and a jack for a single cable link to the “left” speaker unit. A seven button IR remote which duplicates the five-button side mounted system control panel with LED indicators is included.
Any analog audio device can connect to the FS-252 through its RCA or 3.5 mm stereo inputs. Bluetooth with aptX™ and AAC is built-in to receive the highest quality music from mobile devices or home computers. Unlike other multi-room audio systems on the market, the FS-252, can broadcast high-fidelity audio to multiple SKAA receivers from virtually any source be it analog or digital Bluetooth and SKAA.
The FS-252 is both a SKAA transmitter and receiver. As a transmitter it can cast simultaneously to up to four additional SKAA systems, amps or headphones for single or multi-room use. Adding or switching between sources or transmitters is done with a click of a button on the speaker or the wireless remote with no cumbersome paring or Wi-Fi resets involved.
Cabinets 2 MDF sealed boxes, piano black finish, four isolation feet, detachable grilles
Amplification Stereo 2 channels x 25 watts @ 8 ohms, class D
Drivers (MTM array) Woofers: (2) 3.5-inch CPP Tweeter: (1) .75-inch silk dome
Passive Radiator: (1) 4-inch bottom mounted
Inputs Digital, SKAA wireless and Bluetooth 4.0 with aptX and AAC wireless
Analog, stereo RCA L/R In and 3.5mm AUX In
Outputs Digital, SKAA wireless and Analog, stereo RCA L/R Pre-out
SKAA Audio Range: Up to 150 ft, 20Hz – 20 kHz, 48 kHz x 16 bit stereo, Latency: 36ms, fixed
Frequency Response 100-20K +/- 3 db
Sensitivity 88 db
Power 90-240VAC / 50-60 Hz
Dimensions 5.7” W x 11.2” H x 8.5” D (145mm W x 285mm H x 215mm D)
Unboxed Weight Right: 9.25 lbs., 4.2 kg Left: 7.72 lbs., 3.5 kg
Price and Availability
The Atlantic Technology FS-252 loudspeakers are now shipping internationally at $749/pr (USD).
Atlantic Technology is also expected to roll-out several more SKAA products in 2019 including an integrated amp, a sound bar, headphones and more.