The SVS Prime Wireless Pro Powered Speakers (buy at Amazon) come packed with as much thoughtful, audiophile-grade technology as you could possibly ask for from a $899/pair of active bookshelf speakers. Dressed in either gloss black or gloss white (my review samples are finished in white) these compact speakers compete in the competitive and ever-changing world of wireless audio.
What Makes the SVS Prime Wireless Speakers Special?
- The SVS Prime Wireless Pro Powered Speakers sound better than nearly all desktop speaker solutions – including both wired and wireless options. They image fantastically. They have respectable bass for their size. Compared to other nearfield speakers, the Prime Wireless Pro don’t have the erratic sound in the lower midbass of something like the BBC’s legendary LS35/A speaker design that has been made by so many other speaker companies over the years. The Prime Wireless Pro speakers sound more controlled and realistic. They never try to punch out of their weight class but when they punch, they punch hard.
- The DAC inside the Prime Wireless Pro accepts 24/192 files from streaming and/or HD files from your computer. For those who have a taste for music in HD formats, SVS has you covered through the use of a higher-end chipset that speaks to the needs of audiophiles as much as mainstream consumers.
- There are six presets for your favorite streaming channels. Right on the front of the speakers, you can select from your favorite sources at the touch of a button. The front OLED panel on the main speaker allows you the ability to see your sources or your presets easily in ways that I’ve never seen on a wireless speaker.
- Connectivity is a breeze. Unlike many of the early Bluetooth headphones that I have reviewed lately, you can connect the SVS Prime Wireless Pro speakers in mere seconds. I used them in Bluetooth and Airplay 2 mainly and connecting them requires pressing a button on the back of the lead speaker and then opening “Bluetooth” in System Preferences (for Apple users). The speaker appears and you hit “connect” and you’re in business. All wireless products should be this easy to setup. Also note: there are other options like DTS Play-Fi for connectivity for those that like to go that route too. For non-Apple people, there is support for Android and Chromecast abilities. SVS didn’t leave anybody out unless you are streaming on your Jitterbug.
- Each driver in each speaker is powered by its own 50-watt amp for a total 200 watts of system power, which allows for your ability to make far more noise than anybody should likely make in a nearfield of small setup. My SUV goes faster than most cars on the road thanks to a twin-turbocharged, 440 horsepower V8, but I don’t drive it 155 on the 405 Freeway. It is reassuring to know that, if I got the chance, I could give a Lambo or Ferrari a run for their money. I feel the same way about the amps packed into the Prime Wireless Pro speakers.
- For those looking for a good alternative to a soundbar or AV receiver, the Prime Wireless Pro speakers have an HDMI connection with ARC. There’s a good image on the SVS website showing the Prime Wireless Pro speakers sitting on a credenza below a nicely installed 4K UHD television. You can see how the speakers would be a good fit for upgraded sound in other rooms and AV applications.
- I listen to my speakers more than talk to them, but the Prime Wireless Pro speakers can work with Alexa or Siri. You can try yelling your spouse’s name at the speakers and tell them to “play ‘Super Freak’ by Rick James” and they likely will work.
- The build quality of the Prime Wireless Pro speakers is simply fantastic. The cabinets are rock-solid and have more CNC programmed design features than a standard rectangle-shaped speaker. The driver components are robust and have a little more bass output than you might expect because of the rear-ported design. The Prime Wireless Pro speakers overall have a nice heft to them when they come out of the box.
- Setup of the system took less than 10 minutes (when done by a 10-year-old). Yes, I had my son set these speakers up. You won’t need to call support, but SVS has seven-day-per-week support too. Impressive, but most questions are answered in a quick setup guide that is included in the packaging.
Why Should You Care About the Prime Wireless Pro Speakers?
You could absolutely start your audiophile journey with a product like the Prime Wireless Pro system, and there are many reasons why that could lead to audio-happiness down the road. For those of us with other audiophile or AV systems in our homes, there are so many applications that you can apply the SVS Prime Wireless Pro speakers and have success. We covered the TV connectivity option, which really differentiates the Prime Wireless Pro from other small/wireless speaker systems that I’ve reviewed lately. For me, I need sound for my computer, as I spend a lot of time in front of my MacBook Pro and my beloved 49-inch 4K LG curved monitor. Being able to bring audiophile-grade sound to that setup is something that I am always interested in. There are a lot of ways to make the Prime Wireless Pro speakers fit into your life and make it better with crisp, clean, dynamic sound.
Some Things You Might Not Like About the SVS Prime Wireless Pro Speakers
- Relative to other speakers in the class, the Prime Wireless Pro speakers are large. More specifically, they are tall, so don’t expect them to fit under your monitor. The Prime Wireless Pro are more like what you’d expect to see in a video editing bay or some other more professional venue, meaning that the speakers need to be positioned beside the monitor.
- The plastic remote is not backlit and pretty basic as compared with the quality of the speakers. I know these types of wishlist items are what makes the price creep up, so I understand the decision to go light on the remote. Moreover, I rarely used the remote when I’m sitting at my computer, as I had access to pretty much everything else that I need right on my monitor.
- For wireless speakers, the SVS Prime Wireless Pro speakers have a number of wires. One is for power and we all get that one. The second cable is a connector from the main speaker to the other, as they are tethered. I was able to hide these cables thanks to the holes that we designed into my desk so things looked pretty good while auditioning the Prime Wireless Pro speakers.
Listening to the SVS Prime Wireless Pro Speakers…
On “Making A Fire” from Foo Fighters’ Medicine at Midnight album (CD resolution) (buy at Amazon), the richly layered backup vocalists jumped out at me as notable on the SVS Prime Wireless Pro speakers. The imaging was crisp, but the control that the speakers had over the complicated chorus section was really strong. The bass does what it should, but never tries to go too deep, thus never gets over extended, which is a very good thing. Again, I would describe the sound as very detailed and very nicely controlled. You can’t say that about many wireless speakers.
On “Blackout” by Turnstile (buy at Amazon), a band that got Boomer-hosed by the aging voters at The Grammy’s this year (Ozzy’s record sucked, sorry), you have an even more up-tempo track with more pounding drums, processed-but-highly-distorted guitars, and all of the modern heavy metal goodies that I love. When they break it down into the mosh pit section towards the end of the track, you can hear how taught the bass is on the SVS Prime Wireless Pro Speakers. There’s a whistle what blows towards the end of the song that stands out amazingly well too. It is all the way at the end of the track, for those who want to hear that pop out of the soundstage.
Moving musically in a completely direction, I cued up “Englishman In New York” from Sting’s Fields of Gold (Streaming and CD) (buy at Amazon). This amazingly well-engineered 1980s recording offers a peek into how well the Prime Wireless Pro system can reproduce fine musical details. The space around the instruments is notable. The meandering Branford Marsalis sax melodies are a perfect example, as they weave through the entire track. The overall soundstage comes across with a soft yet highly detailed feel. I found that the way that the Prime Wireless Pro speakers are voiced is very easy to listen to across many different genres of music, be it older pop like this track or the newest, best-recorded songs.
Do the SVS Prime Wireless Pro Powered Speakers Have Any Resale Value?
The SVS Prime Wireless Pro Speakers should retain a good bit of their value if the brand’s subwoofer products are any kind of indicator. These small, wireless speakers can do so much and have so many relevant technologies that if you don’t have a place for them in your home anymore, somebody else will. SVS is also a strong marketer, specifically on social media, thus a younger, tech-savvy audience will have a better chance at knowing the brand, which can also help in terms of resale.
Who Is the Competition For the SVS Prime Wireless Pro Powered Speakers?
The Orb Audio Booster at $879 (buy at Amazon) is a good solution to compare with the Prime Wireless Pro speakers. While it can cost nearly half the price with a lesser subwoofer, these ball-shaped-speakers paired with a modest Polk subwoofer offer smaller main speakers and rely more on the subwoofer to make a full-range sound. The Prime Wireless Pro, being and active speaker with its processing and amplification built in, offers way more technology. The Orb Audio fit under my monitor better and have, understandably, more bass. Add in an SVS SB-1000 subwoofer to the Prime Wireless Pro and the bass issue evaporates, but the overall price tag obviously goes up.
Cabasse’s The Pearl Keshi at $3,000 is a highly stylized system that comes packed as nicely as any product we’ve seen for review recently. The problem is that you don’t listen to packaging; you listen to speakers. This 2.1 system had some connectivity issues (specifically on Bluetooth) and respectfully just didn’t sound as good as the far less-expensive SVS speakers. And that is forgetting the fact that the Cabasse system has a subwoofer.
While not a wireless setup, per se, comparing the SoundArtist LS3/5A speakers at $550 per pairis oddly relevant, in that they were designed by the BBC to make nearfield sound close to 40 years ago. I find all LS3/5As to have a noticeable bump in the lower midrange to make up for the speaker’s total lack of low bass. The Prime Wireless Pro speakers are far more sonically balanced, with a little more bass plus better overall soundstaging and presentation. That’s not mentioning that the LS3/5A speakers aren’t wireless.
Final Thoughts on the SVS Prime Wireless Pro Powered Speakers
For mainstream consumers as well as advanced audiophiles, there are so many applications for the Prime Wireless Pro Powered Speakers. The idea that you can use them for a TV via HDMI ARC borrows from the utility of today’s best soundbars. The fact that you can jam out with your favorite music in HD with great balance, detail, and color-inside-the-line-but-still-tight-bass is even better. Setup is beyond easy. Connectivity covers all of the current bases for both Apple and Android users.
The Prime Wireless Pro system is a great place to get started in hi-fi or to extend you audio hobby to other rooms in your home. The sum of what you get here, much like many other SVS products, is bigger than the asking price, as not only are the Prime Wireless Pro speakers a great value, they are rock-solid performers with audiophile roots that can fully hang with all of the latest wireless players in the market.