Google Home Max Review: Best Of Both Worlds
My review of the new Google Home Max might have forgotten about it since its announcement a couple of weeks ago. So let me refresh your picture on what it is. So we already had Google Home Mini, the little donut-sized-puck speaker for $49 & then there is Google Home, it’s about as large as the large coffee mug with the price tag of 119$. We have Google Home Max, it’s probably the size of a watermelon, pretty heavy too; it will cost about $399.
Google Home Max Design
The design of Google Home Max pretty solid. Inside, its dual 4.5-inches woofers behind the mesh here and point 7-inches tweeters. So the advantage to Home Max has a cabinet that’s so big with so much more space. It has dedicated drivers with dedicated frequencies. I want sideways here with landscape mode; these drivers will give you stereo audio, which pretty much no other smart speaker does. Apple Home Pod won’t even do that what I’ve been told. It’s a pretty simple-looking speaker. It just blends in with the surrounding. You don’t want it to be too flashy after all. It comes in two colors; Black & White. You got these lights in the middle of the mesh and there are no buttons up at the front or sides; Just a single touch bar at the top slip left/right to adjust the volume and play/pause by the push in the center of the bar. It sits on the magnetic circular pad that it comes with. It’s pretty dense with the magnets in the speaker’s bottom. It just a variety of slaps onto the base and acts as an isolation pad; So it doesn’t rumble whatever surface is modern. You have that in a lot of high-end speakers that sit on bookshelves or desktops. So, it looks cool when you buy two of these; you can set them up vertically like bookshelf speakers; they pair with each other and each one is a channel in stereo audio. So you can get some separation; these little isolation pads slap on the side. If you accidentally turn the speakers upside down, you’ll get a warning message “The Google Home is Upside Down, it’ll work best if you turn it over”.
The rest of the hardware; if you flip it around to the back, you’ll find at the top your switch. I wanted it to be a button despite on the Google Home Mini. You could get out of sync but you cant meet the mics with just your voice anymore, it’s a switch so, I guess that’s less complicated. At the bottom corner, you get your headphone jack to plug in an external audio source, A USB-C port (Sweet!), I don’t know what I’d use it for exactly but sweet. I plugged my phone in, it charged which is cool but that’s about it, and then you have the power cable. What I do like about the cable, it has a small end to it, meaning the power circuits are all on the speakers themselves. So it leaves room for other stuff at your power outlet unlike other Google Homes.
Now, let’s get to the main component of it; how does it sound? It is a $400 premium smart speaker having great sounds. Well, it does sound great. It ridiculously 20 times loudspeakers than other Google Home Speakers is nuts. When you’re talking to the assistant, it sounds like there is another person in the room with you, it’s kind of trippy. You get all the benefits of the dedicated drivers though when you just listen to music at full blast. It’s loud obviously unless they’re playing music for a party you’ll probably never use it this loud and it does distort a bit at this volume 70-75%, which is pretty damn and great sound. It has a lot of rich punchy bass and a nice clarity to everything across the board and that’s also where these microphones come in. First of all, I need those mics to hear you say commands from like 20+ feet away from the music it’s already playing pretty loud and it does a pretty good job at that. But it also uses those mics for what it called Smart Sound. When the speakers get big enough, they can produce frequencies so low that they bounce off the walls in the room you’re in. I’m sure you’ve been in a room where the sound just resonates everywhere and overpowers everything else. This is supposed to eliminate that. It uses the microphone to measure the acoustics of the room it’s in, figures out how close the nearest wall is so it doesn’t overpower you with bass and then makes its adjustments accordingly. It doesn’t seem to make a drastic difference to me in the way it sounds, it sounds good anyway but the idea is really smart it’s machine learning. The speakers like to be in the corner of a room in the first place. It’s not an omnidirectional speaker like the home mini or like a 360 sound. All audio running in one direction; you tend to put it near a wall or around a corner and let it fill the place. You can also control the sound via the app. It’s a kind of hyper-smart premium. You’re dragging in the most beneficial of both worlds. Most smart speakers like the Alexa and other Googles Homes don’t have high-quality sound and stereo speakers; most high-quality systems don’t have the machine learning and Google Assistant built-in.
I’m not going to lie; I like this original Google Home Max. This thing does all the same stuff the Google Home does but sounds a million times better. It just makes me more likely to use it more. Now, is this thing worth the money with the price tag of 400 bucks? It is not an instant buy for most people. I say wait until the Apple Home Pod comes-out despite you might buy that instead but that supposed to come out of $350. I would not be surprised to see the price drop of this machine to match that. They’re still pretty different in a lot of ways. Google assistant is way better than Siri, HomePods are half the size but it will have some small audio features. I think that will make it competitive but probably just better off getting the original Google Home.