If you were to walk into, say, your local Target or Walmart store and head to the electronics section, you’d be greeted with tons of TVs, smartphones, cameras, speakers, and more sitting out on display ready for you to test. The reason for this is that technology often needs to be experienced by consumers in order for them to really appreciate and understand it. And that’s exactly what the WiSA team has set out to do with the latest WiSA-certified surround sound system.
Fresh off of CES 2020, WiSA president Tony Ostrom and Vice President Global Partner & Channel Market Development, Keith Washo hit the road on a mini east coast tour. Tony and Keith invited me to an exclusive showing of Avengers: Endgame using the Monaco 5.1 Wireless Home Audio System. Having seen the movie in theaters already, this was the perfect test to see how the Monaco system stacked up to my experience in the theaters.
The whole system was already set up when I entered the room, and although we were in a small hotel living room, it didn’t seem the least bit out of place. There were no audio cables running across floor, no wires hanging down from the TV, just speakers plugged into the wall and set atop end tables.
After describing many of the specs, Tony took me through the setup process, which was done entirely on screen. The WiSA-ready TV recognized the Monaco System right away and within a few seconds, the speakers were fired up and ready to go. The guys joked that taking everything out of the box is usually the step that takes the longest.
Tony recommended a few scenes from Avengers: Endgame that would really showcase the Monaco System’s power, and then put me in control of the remote. The first scene we watched was when Hulk puts on the Infinity Gauntlet and snaps his fingers. For anyone that hasn’t seen the movie, here is the scene I’m referring to:
Listening to the above video now as I reflect back on hearing it with the Monaco 5.1 System feels pretty anticlimactic. There’s a big difference between simply watching something and actually experiencing cinema, and the Monaco 5.1 System makes that happen. Action scenes are even more thrilling while small details like background noises become crisp and lifelike. I found myself totally engrossed in the movie and never once felt the urge to look at my phone or shift my focus anywhere else.
To really get into the specs, the system boasts uncompressed, 24-bit, 48KHz quality, which is better than MP3 and CD. It's also Tuned by THX to ensure listeners get the best EQ out of the system. On top of that, the latency is less than 5.2 milliseconds making for a perfect lip sync (at least as far as the eye can see) and the synchronization between speakers is just one microsecond. While I only got to experience how the system handles a movie, those stats also make the Monaco 5.1 system one of the best surround systems for gaming. Latency less than 100 milliseconds is considered acceptable for gaming with 20-40ms being the most ideal. The Monaco 5.1 comes in well below that “optimal” level, which Tony and Keith admit often results in disbelief from many gamers.
Strictly speaking to the audio, the experience I had while watching Avengers: Endgame in theaters versus at home with the Monaco 5.1 system was practically identical. What was equally as impressive to me was just how easy everything was to configure. Wired surround systems can definitely be intimidating, and to add to that, most cost well above $1,000 and require an AVR for another $200-$300. The Monaco 5.1 System is currently available on Amazon for $800 with everything you’ll need to create a fully immersive home theater set up. This product truly ticks all the boxes: it’s affordable, insanely easy to use, and most of all, the sound is impeccable.