- Great sound, Interesting design, Low price
- Speaker placement a little strange
For those wanting a slightly different and extremely funky set of PC speakers for a bargain price, the Xa-40 is a great choice.
Price$ 59.95 (AUD)
It's difficult to make a particularly original speaker system. There's only so many ways one can design and position two satellite speakers and a subwoofer. So when TDK's Xa-40 flat panel acoustic system appeared in the office sporting a unique design and an attractive, slightly retro, look we were eager to have a listen. It proved to be an excellent speaker system, offering above average sound quality for an extremely low cost.
The value for money this system offers is what really makes it a standout product. At just $59.95 it is a bargain, and while the sound quality isn't going to impress an audiophile, your average listener will be more than satisfied.
This system incorporates two satellite speakers along with a small subwoofer, into a single cubic package, giving you proper 2.1 sound in a relatively small space. Despite being quite small, the sub packs a serious punch, lending extremely strong bass to the overall sound. This is the system's one flaw, as the bass is perhaps too pronounced. It creates a very dark sound and the bass can get bloated at higher levels. It isn't so bad as to drown out the other musical elements but it is definitely the strongest part of the sound.
However the rest of the frequency range is quite well represented, with highs that fall just short of being harsh and a clear mid range. The level of detail is quite good for a set of speakers in this price point and we were pleased with the separation the Xa-40 displayed. The speakers were capable of achieving more than satisfying volume levels as well, which can be a problem for some of the smaller units.
The design is rather minimalist, with a single volume knob being the only visible control marring the otherwise smooth white face plate. Conversely, the sides and base are covered in glaring orange netting which hides the speakers, and has a very retro look. The overall aesthetic is quite pleasing, with a simple yet interesting design that will grab attention without being too garish.
We did have a small problem with the satellite speakers being aimed outwards however - it felt a little odd not having both speakers pointed at us, as the sound was a little distant, but this doesn't have a huge impact unless you're sitting quite a way from them.
The Xa-40 connects with a single stereo cable. There are no fancy digital options here as the system is designed for basic computer or home entertainment use, not as a full blown entertainment unit. It only has one other port for the AC power adapter, furthering the minimalist design.
If an afforable, decent sounding, all-in-one speaker system appeals then the Xa-40 will do you proud.
Struggling for Christmas presents this year? Check out our Christmas Gift Guide for some top tech suggestions and more.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Sony Xperia Z3 review: The no-frills flagship
- 2 Samsung's Galaxy Alpha review: A peek into the Galaxy S6
- 3 Samsung Galaxy Note 4 review: The busiest, biggest and best Samsung phablet
- 4 Aldi's $279 Bauhn Sphere review: Disappointing
- 5 Nokia Lumia 735 review: Perfectly ordinary
Best Deals on GoodGearGuide
Latest News Articles
- What we know about North Korea's cyberarmy
- Cyberattack on German steel factory causes 'massive damage'
- Blackberry reports falling revenue, but loss shrinks
- Microsoft helps boost Android, iOS app performance with offline access
- Microsoft files suit against alleged tech support scammers
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.