Top positive review
One of the best bluetooth speakers available
8 March 2019
The Stanmore II is not my first Marshall product. I already own the first generation of Stanmore and Woburn and the portable Stockwell. I can therefore say that I know quite well the Marshall lineup.
Stanmore II is the sweet spot within the product range as it is compact but capable of high performance. The Acton is too tiny and cannot play at a similar volume or ensure the same bass response. On the other hand, the Woburn can be even louder and richer in bass range thanks to its two woofers. If space is not an issue Woburn can deliver the best performance but your neighbors may not appreciate it as much you do.
All in all the Stanmore II is a very good product that will please any user, even the most demanding:
• Built quality: As any Marshall products, it is built paying attention to details. It is entirely covered with high quality black vinyl, details are made of real brass and knobs are rubberized for easier grip.
• Features: Stanmore II offers very good connectivity thanks to RCA, 3.5mm Jack and Bluetooth 5.0. The wireless connection allows to keep two devices connected at a time and, by playing a song on one of them, the other one will be automatically paused if already playing. In addition to this the App allows to pair multiple Marshall products together and fine tune the sound with 5 bands EQ. Bluetooth connection is low latency and ensures no lag between video and audio while watching a movie. All the knobs of Stanmore II are digital and show the level with nice red leds whose intensity can be dimmed.
• Sound quality: if compared to the previous generation there is a difference in timbre of sound. Stanmore I was smoother with less extension to the high end. Probably with Stanmore II new tweeters have been used to increase efficiency and this led to a well detailed sound which is sharper than before. Overall sound quality is very good and the DSP makes sure that the sound is always balanced and undistorted.
• Optical audio: the Stanmore II lost the optical connection that was available in the first generation. Beware of this in case you want to use it also as a soundbar for your TV and that with a few £ an external converter can be added and connected to RCA input.
• Volume management: this is definitely a step forward on the previous generation. Stanmore I and the connected Bluetooth device had two different volumes that had to be adjusted individually. With Stanmore II the master volume is unique and can be set either from the speaker or from a phone. By spinning the knob on the speaker, you will see the volume on your phone increase or decrease accordingly.
• Play/Pause/Skip button: a multifunctional button, missing in Stanmore I, has been added. It is very useful.