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Apple HomePod

Discussion in 'Apple' started by DaveF, Jan 29, 2018.

  1. Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

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    I came really close to picking up a second HomePod, that’s was a really good sale price! But I waited too long and on Cybermonday, they were sold out. I’ll be curious if this deal comes back.
     
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  2. Dave Scarpa

    Dave Scarpa Producer

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    someone said costco was selling them for $249 also . I only had a short time to listen today but i'm real impressed for the sound from that size speaker, and after the update its really well balanced
     
  3. Tino

    Tino Executive Producer
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    They’re $279.00 now at BB.
     
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  4. Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

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    Thanks Tino. I just took a look at the Best Buy app, it shows that price. :). But I’m curious if this is a one day door buster price or if it’s extending a few days.
     
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  5. Tino

    Tino Executive Producer
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    I think it’s a sale price thru the holidays.
     
  6. Tino

    Tino Executive Producer
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    I haven’t really followed this thread but is the HomePod that much better than the Echo? Is it worth $279.00?
     
  7. Ted Todorov

    Ted Todorov Producer

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    According to me: Yes and yes.
     
  8. dpippel

    dpippel HTF Premium Member
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    Depends on what you want it for. If you're in the Apple ecosystem, use Apple Music, and value sound quality above all else, it might be a good choice. If you're more interested in home automation, third-party device support, and services integration, then there's no doubt that Amazon's Echo devices beat the HomePod hands-down. 3rd generation Echo Dots are $30 right now, which means you can buy nine of them for the price of a single HomePod.

    Of course, these are all moving targets, and I'm sure Apple will continue to add features as time goes on, but they also have a history of keeping things in the family.
     
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  9. Ted Todorov

    Ted Todorov Producer

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    I will say this: I am using my beautiful, excellent Swan Diva speakers for music less and less: instead of turning on nice Denon receiver, etc. I tend to listen to music through the stereo HomePods. I completely convert my change avert spouse to listening to WNYC over the HomePods via Siri.

    I still use the Divas/Denon for 5.1 sound for AppleTV/Blu-ray/TiVo.
     
  10. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    As many of us have said, the decision as to whether or not a HomePod is "worth it" boils down to how important the following things are to you.
    • Are you invested in the Apple ecosystem and/or are an Apple Music subscriber? If yes to either or both, then HomePod makes sense.
    • How important is sound quality to you? Is it more important than "smart features"? If the answer is "very" to the first, and "yes" or "somewhat" to the second, then HomePod makes sense. While they are further behind than Alexa/Google Assistant, Siri is getting smarter all the time.
    • How important is it to keep your data (relatively) private? Apple is miles ahead in terms of data privacy over Google and Amazon. And Siri is pretty accurate in terms of when she pipes up. I haven't had an accidental activation even when my TV has a commercial that says "Hey Siri" playing. Meanwhile my roommate's Echo dot, which is in the living room, often says "I'm sorry, I didn't get that/I don't understand" while I'm watching TV or movies and the programming had said nothing that sounds like "Alexa". It's seriously annoying, it happens several times a week, including once when I had a date night and we were engrossed in a movie. Lame.
    I have a Pioneer Elite SC-79 hooked up to Energy C6/AC300 L/R/C, PSA 15S sub, RSL CG3 surrounds in the bedroom that sounds better than my stereo HomePods. But that's $5K in equipment (if bought new at near MSRP). But I'll be damned if my HomePods don't get me 75% of the way there in terms of sound quality for 15% of the price. And the bedroom doesn't have Siri or AppleMusic and doesn't obey voice commands. To power up and connect all my things on my 5K set takes a bit. And most of the time I just want to say "Hey Siri play the newest Alice in Chains album" and have it just happen.
     
  11. Ted Todorov

    Ted Todorov Producer

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  12. Ted Todorov

    Ted Todorov Producer

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    That's what I do with the my bedroom stereo - another Denon. Thanks to buying an Airport Express just before they went extinct, hooking it up to the bedroom receiver and Apple coming through with Airplay 2 for the Airport Express, I can say "Hey Siri play the newest London Grammar album in the bedroom", and yes, miraculously, it works.

    Now if we can only persuade Apple to revive the Airport Express, every single receiver with a TOSLink in port, meaning every receiver released in the last couple of decades will work just like mine.
     
  13. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    I can hook my iPhone to my pioneer as well. But I have to power up the pio, select media server, wait a bit for it to become active, then hook my phone up, the speak into the phone. First world problems I know, but even though I can have that functionality it’s not as easy as walking into the bedroom after a long day at work and saying Hey Siri play smooth jazz and then collapse face down into bed. :rolling-smiley:
     
  14. Ted Todorov

    Ted Todorov Producer

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    In our case, just turning on the bedroom receiver does it - we only listen music or radio via AirPlay 2, so there is no need to change the selection. We either talk to Siri via the living room Home Pods - ending the request with "play everywhere" or "play in the bedroom" OR play directly from a Mac/iTunes or iPhone or iPad via AirPlay 2 by selecting "bedroom speaker" as one or more of the audio destinations.

    Indeed you can turn on the receiver after starting to play - the AirPort Express doesn't check if the receiver is on or off, it feeds the optical cable immediately.
     
  15. JQuintana

    JQuintana Banned
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    I didn't realize the HomePod was still around. I never see it advertised. I see all kinds of other similar devices advertised on TV from Facebook, Amazon, Google, but never this device.
     
  16. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    I use my bedroom receiver primarily for movies, so it’s usually on the wrong input. And the Media Server setting on the Pio takes a while to show up on the iDevice. So I have to find the remote (which I’ve usually managed to misplace because that’s my life), power on the receiver, press Net and cycle to Media Server, then wait 10 seconds or so to have it appear as an option on my phone, connect from the phone, and then say what to play. Yeah that whole thing takes only a minute or so, but again not as easy as just walking into the room and speaking your wish into the air. But it’s the same with Alexa and room automation. Turning on lights and powering only takes seconds, but people still laud it for doing those things. We are slowly becoming the Wall-E people. :eek:
     
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  17. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    Writing in this thread made me turn on my AVR for the heck of it. I forgot there are a couple of other things that annoy me about that workflow, and it may be due to Pioneer, or Airplay, I'm not sure.
    • A delay in command responsiveness. Whether I'm skipping tracks, changing volume, there's about a 1/2 to full second delay between when I initiate the command on my phone and the Pio reflects it. I have a Gigabit router so it's not a latency issue.
    • Volume changes often unresponsive the first time I change it after a delay from my iDevice. So if I put the iPhone/iPad down while a song is playing, and then I pick it up after a few seconds, if I change the volume using my iDevice, often the first attempt won't register at all. Then if I change it again, finally the Pio will register the volume change. If I make subsequent volume changes while the "session" is still active (i.e I have it in my hands and haven't left the app and more than a few seconds haven't elapsed without me inputting a command) all subsequent volume changes are reflected. But if I put the device down, or don't issue a command for maybe 30 seconds, or if the device screen turns off (I have it set to display off after 60 seconds) then when I try to change volume again (whether it's from iTunes or the Sleep Screen shortcut (swipe down from upper/right corner while device is in Lock mode) again the first attempt to change volume is unregistered. So often if I want to change volume from the iDevice, I have to make a small change first, pause a second, then make the actual volume change. If I make a big change and the Pio doesn't register (say I turn the volume up), then make another change, the system will then reflect both changes. I've accidentally turned it up, had the Pio not register, turn it up again, then freak myself out by the volume change then blasting out of my speakers. This has happened through all builds of iOS that I've had this combo, so I'm not sure where the problem lies.
     
  18. JQuintana

    JQuintana Banned
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    This is a reason I love having my Roku TV. It has Spotify, Pandora, Google Play Music loaded on it (hooked to my AVR), I just hit one button on the Harmony and I can access whatever music I need ("Listen to Spotify" etc) with next to no effort. Heck, I can tell my Google Home to play "Christmas Favorites on Roku and I don't even need to touch anything. :)
     
  19. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    Sounds cool, but unfortunately I don’t subscribe to any of those services. I’m pretty tied into the Apple ecosystem (both for Apple Music and hardware including phones iPads and laptops).

    But like I said, going through HomePod is a much easier process for me. Just was comparing it to going through AVR.
     
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  20. Mark Booth

    Mark Booth Cinematographer
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    I ordered two more Space Gray HomePods through Target yesterday. After RedCard discount they were $237.50 each. Way better than the $279.99 price we saw in Costco yesterday.

    Not sure where I'll end up putting them. That will make 4 HomePods for the Booth household. I might set up a stereo pair in either the bedroom or living room. One of them will likely end up being a "rover", moving from room to room as I see fit. Perhaps on the patio once in awhile too.

    Mark
     
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