Speakers Guide

Philips Fidelio Soundsphere Docking Speaker with AirPlay DS9800W review

Philips Fidelio SoundSphere DS9800W Docking Speakers - High Fidelity At A High Price

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Overall rating 8.5/10
Design:
9
Performance:
9
Features:
8
Value:
7.5
THE GOOD
Attractive design
Detailed and punchy sound
Balanced delivery
THE BAD
Finicky AirPlay setup
Dock is only for charging purposes


Setting It Up

Tricky, Tricky


Part I: Connecting The Speakers

The initial setup was easy work, although setting up the AirPlay connection is a little more tedious. Once you've removed all the items from the box, simply connect the two speakers to their binding posts via the supplied cable . Plug in the power cable and you're set; at least where cabling is concerned. Power on the system, and the green LED (found behind the left speaker) would blink rapidly whilst the unit is powering up. The LED would continue to blink after initializing, albeit at a much slower rate. Now, here comes the tricky part. Given that the Fidelio SoundSphere does not carry an LCD display, you'll have to rely on its LED status to determine what's going on with the system. There are two ways to add the speakers to your home network. One solution is to use Wi-Fi Protected Setup (WPS) if your router supports it. Alternatively, you may configure the DS9800W wireless settings manually via its configuration page. We chose the latter.

Part II: Experiencing AirPlay

To get things going, press and hold the Wi-Fi Setup button on the DS9800W for five seconds. The LED would blink green and yellow in rapid succession. We assume it's enabling a wireless broadcast at this point. Next, whip out your iPod Touch/iPhone/iPad and select the Wi-Fi settings. On that note, we'll be using the iPhone 4S for our tests. The "Philips_Fidelio_Airplay" SSID would eventually show up on the list of available networks after 20 seconds or so. Select it, and a Wi-Fi icon should appear next to the Philips' SSID once connection is established. Fire up the Safari browser, and enter the following IP address - 192.168.1.1. Word of caution: To prevent any IP conflicts, we'd advise users to check that the router isn't using the same IP before proceeding with this step. You should see the Fidelio SoundSphere's configuration page if all goes well. Select your router's SSID via the Service Set ID drop-list, and enter your security key (if any) before hitting the Apply button. The green LED would stabilize and the speaker would beep once the DS9800W is successfully paired with the router.