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Tested: SYMFONISK | Sound genius in the lamp



As a WiFi speaker designed by IKEA in collaboration with Sonos, the SYMFONISK stands out as a great product at an unbeatable price. But its lamp part is much less successful.

WE love

What a curious beast this SYMFONISK sold by IKEA, and designed in partnership with Sonos. It is a WiFi speaker as Sonos has been selling it since 2005, to which a support for a lampshade, a socket and a switch have been added. Three buttons at the very bottom are used for volume control and for stopping or advancing songs.

But it is especially with the mobile application S2 that you actually control the SYMFONISK, that you can pair with a SUB subwoofer or with another SYMFONISK to create a stereo pair. This is where you save all the music streaming services you subscribe to, your own songs available on the network, where you can use the equalizer, create speaker groups and control the volume.

iOS users also have a calibration tool called Trueplay: you walk around the room with the phone while the speaker emits psychotronic sounds that allow it to adjust. The improvement obtained is very subtle; some experts say it’s real, but it’s honestly beyond our knowledge.

As it is also an IKEA product, it can be controlled minimally thanks to the DIRIGERA home automation gateway, which is plugged into the router. From app home-smart from IKEA, you can then control the volume, see the song that’s playing and pause it.

As the set is sold for $199, much cheaper than all the other Sonos products, with the exception of the tiny Roam, we are skeptical about the sound quality such a speaker can deliver. In fact, at this price, it doesn’t match any other Sonos product.

Surprise: this SYMFONISK has more presence and definition than our two Sonos ONE in the same room, which nevertheless sold for $269 each – without the lamp part.

With a well-balanced sound that enhances vocals, especially at home in more subtle genres like classical and jazz, SYMFONISK easily competes with smart speakers priced twice as much. Its bass is honest, but lacks a bit of tone.

We love less

The biggest flaw of the SYMFONISK model we tested is its design. With its mesh metal shade surrounding a cylinder of fabric, it looks like a turbojet has landed in the house. It’s downright ugly, even when you like industrial or futuristic looks. There are two other models from SYMFONISK, one with a bamboo lampshade which does not seem more successful to us, and the other in glass which is much more acceptable.

There is no light intensity control. To achieve this, we must add a smart bulb.

Acquiring the DIRIGERA gateway at a cost of $79.99 is not very useful when you only have the SYMFONISK. It is with IKEA’s other home automation products, in particular its smart bulbs, that the DIRIGERA becomes interesting.

The SYMFONISK doesn’t have a microphone, so you can’t add a voice assistant like Alexa or the Google Assistant to it. In addition, it does not have Bluetooth and therefore can only communicate through WiFi or Apple’s AirPlay 2.

Unlike pure Sonos products, it is impossible to find the full technical specifications of the SYMFONISK. The page devoted to it on the IKEA site is minimal, as if it were a classic lamp, and the manual contains only drawings showing the assembly and the buttons.

One buys ?

We want to give two distinct marks to the SYMFONISK, an 8 out of 10 for the loudspeaker and a 4 out of 10 for the lamp. It’s hard to recommend this purchase if you don’t like its look. If not, here’s a quality Sonos-worthy WiFi speaker at an amazing price.

Big dilemma.

WiFi speaker lamp, fabric shade, white SYMFONISK

Maker : IKEA, in partnership with Sonos

Price : $199

Note : 8 out of 10 (speaker) and 4 out of 10 (lamp)

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