I hate wires! I can remember a time several years back where my wife stood there hollering at me as I ripped the walls apart to bury cabling, and better yet, drilled holes in the hardwood to position the surround speakers. Up until this moment in fact, I never considered the drop ceiling in the lower level of that home a benefit…but it was. It is rather amusing thinking of the miles of wiring in that drop ceiling which could be fished anywhere…all to accomplish that hidden wire beauty. That was then. This is our new home.
Don’t get me wrong, this is stunning…but…you are not hiding wires in this room anytime soon without a massive amount of work on your hands. The lower level…hard ceiling. So we had suffered three years with a 3.1 home cinema, having investigated every option possible to create a 5.1 system with at least the surrounds being wireless. Not possible. From everything I have read, there isn’t an acceptable wireless speaker system available that can effectively run wireless surrounds.
I checked Denon Heos as my receiver is apparently set up for that…but nope. Nothing whatsoever without spending thousands of dollars. At least nothing until we discovered the Platin Monaco 5.1 Wireless Cinema Sound System with the SoundSend Wireless Audio Transmitter. Today… EVERY speaker is wireless including our subwoofer. No speaker wires…period.
IS IT WiSA CERTIFIED OR WiSA READY?
Before we get into specifics, let’s speak about that word on the top of that puck shaped object in this shot, WiSA. It is the Wireless Speaker and Audio Association trademark and their bread and butter is establishing and maintaining standards for wireless speakers and audio devices. These standards speak to streaming of up to eight channels of audio wirelessly. This audio is transmitted over 24 RF channels of the previously reserved radar and weather channels between the 5.1-5.8GHz bands which means there is absolutely no interference whatsoever with your in home Wi-fi. The Monaco 5.1 system has no connection to your home Wi-fi whatsoever.
The signal is sent to all speakers uncompressed and up to 24-bit 48/96kHz which is twice the quality of CD and all speakers are guaranteed matched to within a microsecond delay which is undetectable. The latency from transmitter to speakers is 5.2ms which is 1/10th the latency of Bluetooth with a maximum wireless distance from SoundSend transmitter to speaker of 9 metres or 30 ft. In plain English, this means that home cinema voice to lip sync is dead on and there is no delay when changing channels or turning your system on or off.
Having said that, WiSA Platin Monaco Home Cinema is not a multi-room or whole-home system as we see with Denon, Sonos and other companies, nor does it stream Bluetooth, unless of course your television has that feature. The Platin Monaco 5.1 Wireless Cinema Sound system is WiSA Certified. If you haven’t heard of WiSA, that might be expected as it is not as established as is BT or Wi-Fi just yet. It’s members include some of the worlds top audio manufacturers, Klipsch, Bang and Olufsen, Harman, Polk, JBL, Buchardt and Boston Acoustics to name a few, and we fully expect that WiSA certification will become the standard in home cinema at some point. For now, we can validate that 2021 LG OLED and NANOCELL televisions are ‘WiSA Ready’ which means if you plug in a WiSA USB Transmitter, a sub-menu within the TV assists in your wireless speaker integration.
Moving back to our sample Platin Monaco 5.1 Wireless Cinema Sound System, this packaged shipped weighs 42.5lbs and includes 4 satellite speakers, a center speaker, subwoofer, six power cables, HDMI cable and a SoundSend Wireless Audio Transmitter with a microUSB for powering that. This system is ‘Tuned by THX‘ which means that the system has been carefully tuned and calibrated by THX engineers to maximize the performance of the Monaco system. It is completely wireless, however, each speaker, the subwoofer and the SoundSend Transmitter must be within 6ft of a power outlet as each is self powered.
MONACO 5.1 SETUP
Setup of the Monaco was extremely easy. Plug the 5 speakers and subwoofer into power outlets. Looking at the back of each speaker, you will find a sticker designating what position that speaker has been preset at (FL/FR/C/SL/SR). If you already have your TV ARC/eARC plugged into your audio receiver, simply unplug it and plug it into the SoundSend Audio Transmitter, plug the SoundSend in and everything should start right up. It literally took longer to unpack the system than it did to get it running. From there, download the SoundSend App and fine tune your system.
If you don’t have your TV hooked up to anything, you will most likely need to go to your menu and turn the TV from directing sound to its internal speakers to that of the SoundSend Audio Transmitter. In the case of my Samsung, the option to direct sound via ARC is listed as ‘Receiver’. There may also be one or two other adjustments with respect to your Dolby selection or ARC/eARC/CEC/Anytime+ to ensure the sound is travelling from the TV to the SoundSend Transmitter via HDMI.
This is the SoundSend Wireless Home Cinema Audio Receiver. It has an HDMI port for the HDMI ARC/eARC connection from your TV. It has an optical TOSLINK connector which could be used from any device and would make this product IDEAL for the home PC gamer. Did we mention that XBox One, One S, One X, and Series X are all compatible with the SoundSend? It also has a microUSB power connector, a button on top that you press should your system not connect from stand-bye, and an LED on the front that flashes green when searching its speaker links and turns solid white when connected.
Put simply, your audio/video signal is sent from the TV via ARC/eARC by way of the HDMI cable and the sound is sent wirelessly from the ‘puck’ to your subwoofer and speakers. It is capable of decoding Dolby Digital, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby True HD (via TOSLINK) and Dolby Atmos and can pass sound to up to eight channels, auto recognizing audio configurations from 2.0 to 7.1 to 5.1.2 ATMOS.
To be perfectly clear, the SoundSend receiver does not in any way connect to your stereo receiver. It replaces it which may be a point of concern for some as the only speakers that will work with WiSA systems are WiSA certified speakers. We would love to see this integrated into professional receivers but, at least for now, it is only compatible with smart televisions that feature ARC/eARC or a TOSLINK port. What is very good is that this allows for massive compatibility and our TV is a 2014 75″ Samsung H6350 1080p smartTV which connected immediately. The only requirement for this system is that you have a smart TV with at least ARC.
The ideal of WiSA is such that with WiSA transmitter integration, the consumer can now have a professional sounding and well priced wireless home cinema without having to invest heavily in a home receiver and speakers. This also leaves us with a single remote at days end which is something most understand rather well.