HWM (Singapore) - - Test -

The Kai X2s are part of X-mini’s new­est line of speak­ers, and fea­ture a sleek new mod­ern look that’s quite a de­par­ture from the old de­sign. Un­like the rest of the speak­ers in this shootout, the Kai X2 isn’t built with a strap or hook of any sort, nor do they boast wa­ter­proong.

In­stead, these have a matt space grey nish with no vis­i­ble con­trols. Those are found in the rub­ber­ized base be­low, which means you’ll need your phone to do the heavy lift­ing once you’ve placed the speaker down. Clearly, these are meant to be used in the home, per­haps paired with your lap­top for ca­sual lis­ten­ing.

Af­ter run­ning through a few of our test tracks, it be­came quickly ev­i­dent that the mids are the best part of the speaker’s range. It doesn’t have the crisp highs of the Beo­play P2, nor the rumbly lows of the SRSXB10, but it does pro­vide en­ergy and ex­cite­ment to al­most every track it takes on.

Songs that heav­ily fea­ture vo­cals seem to work best with this speaker, but whether it was the rock­ing vibes of Jon Bon Jovi’s Keep the Faith, or the fre­netic string work of Vi­valdi’s Con­certo No. 1 in E ma­jor, Op. 8, RV 269, “La pri­mav­era” (Spring), the Kai X2 han­dled it all with equal vigor dur­ing our gen­eral test­ing.

As you can imag­ine, this trans­lated to our for­mal test tracks too, with an even per­for­mance through­out. The in­tro of El­e­ments of Life was nicely han­dled with just enough bass and en­ergy, but the speaker’s de­liv­ery left you wish­ing it was just a bit darker with a slightly wider sound­stage.

It also did well with Adele’s Melt My Heat to Stone, de­liv­er­ing a nice warm ren­di­tion that placed good bal­ance on both vo­cals and back­ing in­stru­ments.

Works well with all gen­res of mu­sic. Play­back bu�ons are dif­fi­cult to get to.

HWM | AU­GUST 2017

The mi­croSD is hid­den away near the base.

All the con­trols are at the bot­tom of the speaker.

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