Having just had the Sonos Play:1 in for testing, it seems like an ideal opportunity to run the rule over its competitor, Pure’s Jongo T4.
In a similar vein to the Sonos, Pure is touting hassle-free wireless multi-room home audio without breaking the bank. So how does it compare to Sonos’ recently released Play:1?
The first thing you’ll notice about the T4 is its looks. Fashioned out of white plastic, the speaker has a soft, rounded design reminiscent of an early iPod. The resulting design looks strikingly similar to a space-aged speakerdock or sorts, and there’s also a range of interchangeable coloured covers which can be mixed and matched to suit your home’s decor.
Pure’s wireless setup has been streamlined as much as possible meaning there is no bridge to connect to your router. It took me a couple of attempts to get a pair of speakers to pair-up with my network. Eventually it dawn upon me that I needed to punch in MyJongo into Safari’s address bar to finish off the setup process rather than wait for app to do it, but ultimately, it was noting a quick read of the instructions and a Youtube video couldn’t solve.
The most important part of any sound system is, of course, sound quality, and that’s where the Jongo T4 was a bit of mixed bag. The T4 is actually £40 more expensive than a Sonos Play:1, so you’d think that for a little extra buck you’d get a little bit more bang. And whilst the T4 is considerably louder, with fulsome low-ends, I personally found it lacked a little bit clarity and definition, although we have been told that a new software update is in the pipeline to further improve the sound quality with Pure promising a much richer sound palette.
Where Pure does get it really right is their accompanying app, it’s considerably better than Sonos’ effort, as Pure includes its own Spotify-style streaming service, whereby tracks can be streamed (£5) or cached offline (£10). All music is housed within the cleanly designed app where you also have access to your stored music, free internet radio, which was very well laid out, podcasts, and of course, Pure’s own Spotify-style subscription service, which actually uses 7Digital’s extensive catalogue to beef its music credentials. Elswhere, the Jongo T4 also offers a handy 3.5mm line-in so you don’t have to ditch your vinyl or CD player.
At the time of writing, Pure’s app is only available on iOS and Android – so if you’ve got a Windows Phone, or worse – you might want to hold off splashing your cash just yet. Pure is also are very proud of their proprietary technology behind its stereo pairing tech and reckons their synching method is the best you can get and just comparable to using tradition speaker cable – which we have to agree with. And the welcome ability to connect external devices to the speakers may just tip the balance for those of you who are still diligently holding onto your CDs and vinyls.
Overall Pure’s Jongo T4 is an impressive piece of kit, and the ability to connect iPods and CD players means it has a major differentiator to the Sonos Play:1. With an impending software update to further improve sound quality and the ability to mix and match coloured covers – Pure’s gets a lot thing right with the Jongo series, and it’s a worthy competitor to Sonos’ Play series.
HBF Rating 4/5
You can try Pure’s new music service for free for one month here: pureconnect.com