Good quality cables are supplied in the box and it’s no hassle to connect them to the binding posts. Operating the V30 is easy enough, but more effort should have gone into the remote. It’s too slim and small to sit comfortably in the hand, and sports those horrible blister/popper buttons.
It’s also a slight inconvenience that you can’t use it to switch between sources – that’s only possible using the dial on the front. Still, it’s nice to be able to adjust volume from the comfort of your sofa, plus you can easily tweak bass and treble and mute the sound.
We’ve been hugely impressed by the sound quality of previous Blue Aura systems like the WS30i and WS80i, and the same goes for the v30. When playing back MP3s of varying quality from an iPod and laptop (via USB and line input) it produces a consistently deep and velvety sound, with beautifully presented top-end detail and plenty of warmth in the lows and mids.
Despite the meagre power rating the V30 also sounds fairly potent, blasting out energetic dance tracks with drive and purpose, propelling them along with taut, punchy basslines.
Hi-hats sound crisp and on-point, plus there’s a lovely high-end twang to acoustic guitars and a breathy edge to vocals. The soaring saxophones of Sade’s Jezebel and the smooth vocal crooning of Amy Winehouse and Tony Bennett on ‘Body and Soul’ are a delight.
If we’re being fussy then perhaps the sound isn’t quite as insightful and refined as other systems like the Philips DS9800W. But the warmth and detail on offer will win this system many fans.
Blue Aura has once again come up trumps with an audio system that boasts distinctive looks, luxurious build quality and silky sound. Although it can’t completely restore compressed digital music back to the glory of the original recordings, the added warmth and fullness of the valve technology makes it sound more satisfying than many transistor-based speaker docks.