We’ve all seen it in the movies. Some Gosling-esque all-star seals the deal with the equally-gorgeous damsel at the bar. Pair his boyish charm with a couple of choice cocktails and…you guessed it, folks: Elvis has left the building. If the departure from the bar wasn't impressive enough, the entrance to his pad is one that rivals Ricky Vaughan’s 9th inning strut from centerfield. As he opens the door for his lady, he whips out a double clap to dim the lights down to mood setting, and queues the tunes (and the swag) remotely from his couch. Sound familiar?
Now, unfortunately the vast majority of us can’t afford to live in a movie worthy bachelor pad, and simply put, some of us just look better in a well-lit room. Be that as it may, it certainly does not mean you can’t be putting up a triple-double in the “Style” column, especially at home.
There’s no doubt about it, technology is shaping the way we live our lives. If you are looking for an easy way to not only spice up your living quarters, but also look like you’ve got it together (scary concept, I know), try getting your home up to speed in the technology department. After all, dressing the part is almost as vital as acting it.
Selecting The Technology
Let’s start with the music arrangement. Using technology to queue your tunes wirelessly is simple, clean, and generally easy on the wallet. Long gone are the days of lugging your laptop over to your sound system and fiddling with the audio output jack. Pretty much any mobile device out there today that has the ability to connect to a network and play multimedia that can turn your little handheld device into a magical channel of wizardry. Now, the two most popular avenues traveled in the realm of audio systems today are Bluetooth and WiFi technologies. While popular opinion may vary, you can generally follow these rules of thumb to help you make your selection:
Bluetooth audio systems are generally used for short-range set ups (15-30 ft), while using WiFi will likely provide you the ability to connect your tunes from anywhere in your abode.
Bluetooth audio systems are widely compatible to most electronic devices today including phones, tablets, laptops, etc.
In most WiFi based systems, audio signals are transmitted using an algorithm that prevents data loss, so the data signal traversing the WiFi with your tunes will have ensured integrity. In other words, your track won’t skip.
The downside of WiFi based systems is that many require compatibility with their source (Apple vs Android) and are not interoperable. If you do decide to take this route, you’ll want to make sure your media player is compatible with your media source.
When it comes to selecting which wireless method to use, there really isn’t a wrong choice. It all just depends on how you plan to use your speakers.
Queuing The Tunes
Now that you’ve got Sinatra’s Greatest Hits queued up and ready to go, let’s take a look at how you can get the good vibes going.
For the Apple-faithful folks out there taking on the WiFi option, AirPlay is clearly the method of choice for you. AirPlay lets you sync up all of your Apple device (i.e. Macbook Pro, iPad, iPhone, etc.) to your AirPlay-enabled speakers over your existing wireless network in your home. You can control it all from any Apple device. While that is pretty snazzy in and of itself, you can also queue up the tunes on multiple speakers on your network at once.
If you aren’t an “Apple guy,” no need to fret. There are plenty of other options out there for you including Sonos and Bose, both of which have killer WiFi options that allow you to select, play, and manage your playlists via an App on your mobile device.
Last but certainly not least, if you decide to take the Bluetooth route, your options are virtually endless. As we outlined earlier, Bluetooth eliminates the need for source-specific equipment, as two Bluetooth devices can simply “pair” with each other and begin playing music.