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Group Test: Wireless music streamers

Sends songs to your hi-fi with these four systems

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We should point out that we suspect Philips device we tested may have had beta firmware. Why? Well, the menu has settings to access both pictures and video, which is a little curious on a music streamer. Philips recently announced a big brother to the NP1100, the NP2500, which offers same basic functionality but with a colour screen and some fancy sound-enhancement technology.

Set-up
None of these devices are going to tax the old grey matter too much when it comes to setting them up. The Philips and Roku devices are unbelievable simple: plug in, switch on, type in any needed Wi-Fi security codes and that's it. Done. With no need for instructions or an Ethernet cable.

Sonos Controller cradle and Logitech's

Sonos' Controller Cradle (left) costs £30 extra. Logitech's is free with the remote

To be frank, the Sonos and Logitech aren't much more complex though both require some server software to be installed on your computer – Sonos Desktop for the Sonos, SqueezeCentre for the Logitech - while the Logitech's set-up menus are just a little less self-evident than those on the Sonos. The Logitech's enclosed Quick Start guide is rather poorly written and just a bit confusing, the downloadable full instructions being far more comprehensive and much easier to follow.

Sonos ZP90Sonos ZP120

Round the back: Sonos' ZP90 (left) and ZP120

Connectivity
Both the Logitech and Sonos set ups come with all-singing, all-dancing wireless remote controls that allow you to navigate your media from anywhere in the house and play different music through different parts of the network.

The Sonos remote has long set the standard in this field, but we found the Logitech unit was easier and faster to use notwithstanding it only having a 2.4in as opposed to 3.5in screen. The Sonos remote lasted longer on a full charge but by way of compensation Logitech supply a stand/charger while Sonos want an extra £30 for the same.

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