Yamaha NX-P100 review

So much more than an ordinary Bluetooth speaker

Yamaha NX-P100
  • Yamaha NX-P100
  • Yamaha NX-P100
  • Yamaha NX-P100
  • Expert Rating

    4.00 / 5

Pros

  • Great sound
  • Will charge smartphones/tablets
  • Water resistant
  • NFC

Cons

  • Pricey

Bottom Line

Every event you head to will be better with Yamaha's NX-P100. The versatile Bluetooth speaker will turn indoor events into parties, outdoor events into festivals and office meetings into conferences. Between its premium build, sound quality, ease-of-use and small size, the NX-P100 is tough to fault.

Would you buy this?

The NX-P100 is Yamaha's contribution to the Bluetooth speaker market. Packed into a tiny enclosure is a variety of audio and connectivity features, but is it good enough to warrant a $199 price?

Design

Handling the NX-P100 is easily done with one hand. The chic rubber-on-metal body is 17cm long and weighs a portable 500g. The small footprint means it won't weigh you down when you're on the go.

All of the controls rest on the top of the speaker. Rubber buttons manage power, a voice prompt and volume rockers. The top of the speaker is also where you find a notification LED light and a NFC chip.

The right side hosts a few ports behind a rubber flap. These include a 3.5mm auxiliary, a microUSB port for charging, and a USB port that will charge your smartphone or tablet. The latter helps the NX-P100 double as a mobile battery pack.

The voice prompt button communicates the Bluetooth and battery status.
The voice prompt button communicates the Bluetooth and battery status.

The metal body is rigid and free from cabinet shake, while the rubber sole prevents the NX-P100 from skidding across surfaces. It feels solid and very well put together. Moulding the premium materials to this intelligible design is one way Yamaha has made the NX-P100 resistant to water. Wet hands and small splashes have no effect on the unit, but Yamaha and Good Gear Guide recommend against submerging the speaker.

Bluetooth and NFC

Connecting to the NX-P100 is done simply over Bluetooth. If Yamaha’s little speaker has but one shortcoming, it would have to be its inability to remember multiple devices. Alternating between devices, say a smartphone and computer, will require you to re-pair it with the speaker.

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Suddenly this portable speaker could be used in the boardroom

We tested the Yamaha NX-P100 with a HTC One (M7), Samsung Series 9 notebook, Apple iPad Air and Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet. Never did we have any problems.

Android 4.1 devices that support near field communications are even easier to pair. Simply enable Bluetooth and tap your smartphone against the clearly marked NFC logo on the top of the NX-P100. That’s it.

An in-built microphone allows the NX-P100 to double as a Bluetooth speakerphone. Incoming calls are relayed with volume and clarity, and what you're saying will be understood easily by the person on the other end. Suddenly this portable speaker, initially designed for the outdoors, could comfortably be used in the office boardroom.

Yamaha's Bluetooth speaker can be used to charge smartphones and tablets
Yamaha's Bluetooth speaker can be used to charge smartphones and tablets

Gusto and clarity

Read more: Braven releases bluetooth speaker forged from aircraft grade aluminium

Two 4cm full-range drivers are behind the NX-P100’s sound. The front-facing speakers impressively mimic a wider stereo image than what should be possible from such a small enclosure. Songs are played with gusto, but the volume does not come at the expense of clarity.

Every event you head to will be better with Yamaha's NX-P100

Fireworks by Markus Schulz sounds lively on this little speaker. Piano notes during the introduction are precise, then vocals clearly wail just ahead of the hard trance beat. Playing it on max volume was free from distortion, but the different frequencies — bass, low, mid and highs — lightly encroach on one another.

Playing The Fray’s You found me at 70 per cent of volume was handled with a lot more control. A clear sense of texture was prevalent and, even at this volume, the NX-P100 was easily loud enough to fill a mid-sized room.

The results were less encouraging with Bruno Mars’ Talking to the moon as the quiet introduction revealed a faint hiss. It was first noticed within the range of a metre and was soon masked by voluminous sound as the song progressed, but when you hear it once, it’ll always be on your mind. Other R&B songs were faultless, such as Ride by Somo.

Final thought

Every event you head to will be better with Yamaha's NX-P100. The versatile Bluetooth speaker will turn indoor events into parties, outdoor events into festivals and office meetings into conferences. Between its premium build, sound quality, ease-of-use and small size, the NX-P100 is tough to fault.

The Yamaha NX-P100 played music continuously for almost eight hours at sixty per cent volume.
The Yamaha NX-P100 played music continuously for almost eight hours at sixty per cent volume.
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Read more on these topics: Android, bluetooth, speaker, yamaha, NFC, NX-P100
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