Yamaha NX-N500 Bookshelf Speakers

Dane Trethowan <grtdane@...>

List members know that my preference for good Hi-Fi is to have separate audio components and I do appreciate that this situation doesn’t suit everyone as a lot of people live in confined spaces without the room to set this sort of stuff up.
So what if one could get a pair of slick bookshelf speakers with with the amp, Internet Radio and facilities for music services built-in along with Bluetooth and extra inputs to support say a TV and CD Player?
Kef offer such a system with the Egg and the LS-50 Wireless and so do yamaha with the MX-N500 which I found on special this week for $549, usually $999.
Setting up the MX-N500 is easy though it does take some time and familiarising yourself with the varied setup procedures from information provided in the manual is a good idea.
When equipment offers the user varied ways to get it connected to the Internet then that’s when you really have to sit up and take notice.
I chose to setup the Yamaha MX-N500 using the Musicast App which is available for Android and IOS so I’ll get to that in a moment.
Before setup can take place however all the connections have to be made and believe me there are quite a few.
Each speaker - the MX-N500 is a pair - has its own power supply so you need two dedicated wall outlets.
Next you need to connect the connecting cables between the speakers and there are two of those, 1 XLR male to female and what looks similar to an Ethernet cable so you can see what I mean about sitting down to read the manual for a bit. Once all connections are made then its time to switch on and launch the Musicast App.
Setup is simple enough as you only have to follow the setup wizard in Musicast to complete the procedure.
During this time the MX-N500 generates its own Wi-Fi network for you to connect your smartphone to for connection to your main wi-fi network.
I was at this point disappointed to discover that the MX-N500 will only connect to 2.4GHZ networks but I guess you can’t have everything and as I go on with my description of this speaker system I think you’ll agree with me that this issue is but a minor flaw that could possibly be fixed in a future firmware update.
So once connected and setup you have full control of the MX-N500 system through the Musicast App which allows you to stream various music sources including Spotify, Apple Music, local music from your phone, from your Network, Internet Radio and so on.
You can also setup the MX-N500 directly from your network if you’re not interested in the Musicast App though this method may make selecting Internet music sources a little difficult and yes the MX-N500 does have a HTML web interface.
One of the great features about this speaker system - along with great clear and spacious sound - is the preset system which can be accessed via the supplied remote control or via the Musicast App.
There are 6 presets in all which hold all sorts of sources whether that source be a single radio station, a favourite track or a playlist and setting the presets from the Remote Control is dead easy as it should be, hold down the appropriate preset for 3 seconds and that’s it, from that point press that preset to have its contents start playing, a nice touch.
AirPlay and DLan connectivity are available but then again what else would you expect from such an incredible system.
If you’re planning to use the MX-N500 near a computer then you can take advantage of the USB port which allows your Mac or PC to recognise the MX-N500 speaker system as a sound device.
And finally I assure you that those who like their collection of HD Audio files are certainly catered for here with the DAC capable of supporting 384K at 32-bits.
The speakers are of a 2 way design with a 3CM tweeter and 7CM woofer in a dampened cabinet.
There’s much more to this speaker system and it would be impractical to write up everything about it here.
The MX-N500 is just one of the range of Yamaha Musicast speakers and components, I plan to get my hands on one of Yamaha’s portable Musicast speaker offerings in the future to see how that fairs.

Those of a positive and enquiring frame of mind will leave the rest of the halfwits in this world behind.