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Revisited: Neumi BS5P Powered Bookshelf Speaker

Ericglo

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They are considering it. This is the email I received from them a couple hours ago after they saw the updated review.

View attachment 130697


That is good to hear. Port foam shouldn't really cost that much whether they want to include it or make it an add on extra.

An new EQ to go along with the sealed response should help as well. Pierre has these at 5.9 on the preference score with EQ. If Neumi could get in that ballpark then it would definitely be one of the value leaders. For reference, there are only around 10 or so speakers that Amir has reviewed with a preference score that high. Before anyone says it, yes I understand the flaws in the score. Still as a metric it is impressive in this price range.
 

Ericglo

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Thanks!

Not to be confused with BS5 Passive, which are 99$/pair.

Labeling it with a P can be confusing.

That said, the passive speakers should benefit as well. The notch is the same on both active and passive.

The actives are $129 right now. I am not sure if that is a short term special or not.
 
OP
hardisj

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Uhhh…. guys... lol.

The "P" is for "Powered", which is in the name of the thread title and the product.

FWIW, when I hear the term "active" I assume they are talking about crossovers via DSP and each drive unit gets its own amplification channel. These speakers still have passive crossovers; they just have built-in power on one speaker and a speaker level out goes to the other speaker.
 

DSJR

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In the UK, *powered* has come to mean a passive speaker with inbuilt amps but *active* is a speaker with active electronic crossovers (DSP or otherwise, in my day the electronic crossovers were analogue) and individual amps seeing the drive units directly...

A foam to block the ports seems a good idea. One old UK-classic speaker was the Epos ES14 (the response would be rough as a badger's backside now but I digress). To fit a particular market niche, the designer optimised the driver to fit a basically sealed box and used a medium foam to plug the reasonable diameter port. The response then faded down below 120Hz or so and allowed close to wall mounting. Of course, all the domestoc 'expertsd' ripped the foam out (Epos stopped gluing it in place after), still placed the boxes close to the back wall and ended up with a 80Hz boom masquerading for bass which the designer knew would happen. he shrugged his shoulders in defeat and stopped gluimg the bungs in letting the hapless user to decide.
 

Ericglo

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Uhhh…. guys... lol.

The "P" is for "Powered", which is in the name of the thread title and the product.

FWIW, when I hear the term "active" I assume they are talking about crossovers via DSP and each drive unit gets its own amplification channel. These speakers still have passive crossovers; they just have built-in power on one speaker and a speaker level out goes to the other speaker.

Yeah, I get the P is for powered. I was saying for some it could be confusing thinking the P is for passive.
 

Arnandsway

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With what did you stuff the ports?
This does look like a great budget speaker! Much better than the Presonus and the other one, cant remember them even :p
 

Haint

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Stuffed New EQ looks unbeatable anywhere near this price point.
 

MZKM

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Note: New EQ & ports stuffed

Preference Rating
SCORE: 4.2
SCORE w/ sub: 7.1

Frequency response: +/-7dB 50Hz-20kHz ; +/-3.9dB 80Hz-20kHz
Spinorama 50.png
Horizontal Directivity 44.png
Horizontal Directivity Normalized 47.png
Vertical Directivity 45.png
Vertical Directivity Normalized 45.png
chart 54.png
 
Last edited:
OP
hardisj

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I got this email from Neumi:

Erin,

If you get questions from your audience regarding the version of the speaker's firmware, as of now, all of the inventory we have at Amazon are of the original factory firmware. Accordingly, we've put the BS5P on sale at $129.99, knowing that some users will feel inconvenienced at having to partially disassemble the speaker to do the firmware update. Our future batches of the BS5P will have the firmware version labeled on the back of the amplifier so that customers don't have to guess what version of firmware is in the speaker. They will then return to the normal retail price of $149.99.


And, yep, sure enough, they're currently on sale for $130 if you're willing to do the update yourself. And they will make all future releases have the updated EQ.
 

Laserjock

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I got this email from Neumi:




And, yep, sure enough, they're currently on sale for $130 if you're willing to do the update yourself. And they will make all future releases have the updated EQ.
I bought a pair with your link. Guess I’ll be in contact with them to do the update.
 

Maiky76

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Sometimes I test. Sometimes I test 5 times. This isn't going to be the norm but in some cases I think the effort is warranted to bring people a product I think is worthy of consideration, even if it does take me extra time and a bit of ... ahem.... rigging... to make it worthwhile. ;) :D

These retail for $150/pair from Amazon and feature RCA/toslink/coaxial inputs as well as Bluetooth. Do the things I suggest in the review and you have yourself a fine budget speaker.

Full review on my site here:
https://www.erinsaudiocorner.com/loudspeakers/neumi_bs5p_take2/

Enjoy!


Revisited: Neumi BS5P Powered Bookshelf Speaker
  • Tuesday, May 18, 2021
71xoTE7khLL._AC_SL1500_.jpg

Foreword / YouTube Video Review
I reviewed the Neumi BS5P in April 2021 and was very disappointed with the results. The manufacturer contacted me about the results and also expressed their dismay because it was nothing like what they had predicted. This review is an update based on some firmware changes and findings through working with Neumi to understand why my production unit was so far off from their intent.

The review on this website is a brief overview and summary of the objective performance of this speaker. It is not intended to be a deep dive. Moreso, this is information for those who prefer “just the facts” and prefer to have the data without the filler.
However, for those who want more - a detailed explanation of the objective performance, and my subjective evaluation (what I heard, what I liked, etc.) - please watch the below video where I go more in-depth.
<< coming soon >>


Re-Review Backstory

As I said in the Foreword, this is review is based upon some poor results from my initial testing of this speaker. Neumi contacted me about the results (without ever questioning the legitimacy of said results) and asked if I would be willing to check the tweeter polarity to make sure it wasn’t wired out of phase. Turned out the tweeter was indeed wired out of phase. Neumi was very earnest about resolving the issue and sent me an email with the following information:
We’ve tested through speakers we pulled back from Amazon’s warehouse and did not find any units with a reversed tweeter. We also did FR sweeps and they were all within a tight group above 1kHz. So if the speaker you test does have a reversed tweeter, we are more confident now that it’s an isolated incident.

Easy fix; flip the polarity. Yet, the end result still wasn’t what I thought was up to snuff. So, Neumi gave me some backstory on what they were looking to achieve and asked if I would be interesting in trying out some DSP updates and I said of course. Now, I realize it may sound as if I am going too far for a manufacturer to resolve issues. I get it. However, when a manufacturer is willing to take criticism and use that to make improvements then I feel it is worthwhile to work with them to resolve the issues. Especially when I feel the product could easily be taken from a terrible item to a great performer and at such a reasonable entry price as to get the consumer a better value than I feel is currently available otherwise. This is such a case.

Neumi then let me know they made some updates to their built-in EQ and provided me a link to their website for download and instructions on how to update the firmware. Here is the link. So, now I was left with three EQ options:
  1. Factory EQ (dated 09-09-2020)
  2. Flat EQ (all internal EQ disabled)
  3. Updated EQ (dated 05-04-2021)


Information and Photos

The Neumi BS5P is a powered 2-way Studio Monitor featuring a 5-inch midwoofer and 1-inch dome tweeter. It comes with a variety of hookup options (Bluetooth, optical toslink, and RCA connections. It also comes with a remote control.

MSRP is about $150 USD for a pair.


The front can be covered with a grille. The back features various inputs as well as buttons for power, source selection and volume/track selection. And a remote is also included.
DSC01249.JPG


DSC01253.JPG





CTA-2034 (SPINORAMA) and Accompanying Data
All data collected using Klippel’s Near-Field Scanner. The Near-Field-Scanner 3D (NFS) offers a fully automated acoustic measurement of direct sound radiated from the source under test. The radiated sound is determined in any desired distance and angle in the 3D space outside the scanning surface. Directivity, sound power, SPL response and many more key figures are obtained for any kind of loudspeaker and audio system in near field applications (e.g. studio monitors, mobile devices) as well as far field applications (e.g. professional audio systems). Utilizing a minimum of measurement points, a comprehensive data set is generated containing the loudspeaker’s high resolution, free field sound radiation in the near and far field. For a detailed explanation of how the NFS works and the science behind it, please watch the below discussion with designer Christian Bellmann:



A picture of the setup in my garage:
DSC01215.JPG

The reference plane in this test is just below the tweeter, per the manufacturer. A single RCA input was used and the volume was set to default. No grille was used.
Measurements are provided in a format in accordance with the Standard Method of Measurement for In-Home Loudspeakers (ANSI/CTA-2034-A R-2020). For more information, please see this link.
This test will consist of the following four (4) SPINORAMA cases and then I’ll provide more in-depth results of the fourth option. Read the titles of the graphics to know what case you’re looking at. All, of course, have the corrected tweeter polarity.
  1. Factory EQ (dated 09-09-2020)
  2. Flat EQ (all internal EQ disabled)
  3. Updated EQ (dated 05-04-2021)
  4. Number 3 above, with stuffed ports
The fourth option, above, provides the best overall response and one that is much more pleasing to my ears. Therefore, the majority of my review is based on this particular option (updated EQ and ports stuffed).

I used some eggcrate foam and stuffed it into the ports as shown below. Classy!

DSC01896.JPG

CTA-2034 / SPINORAMA:
CEA2034%20--%20Neumi%20BS5P%20%20%5B%20Factory%20EQ%20%28dated%2009-09-2020%29%20%20%5D.png


CEA2034%20--%20Neumi%20BS5P%20%20%5B%20Flat%20EQ%20%28all%20internal%20EQ%20disabled%29%20%5D.png


CEA2034%20--%20Neumi%20BS5P%20%20%5B%20Updated%20EQ%20%28dated%2005-04-2021%29%20%5D.png


CEA2034%20--%20Neumi%20BS5P%20with%20New%20EQ%2C%20Ports%20Stuffed.png


The fourth option, above, provides the best overall response and one that is much more pleasing to my ears. Therefore, the majority of my review is based on this particular option (updated EQ and ports stuffed).

Early Reflections Breakout:
Early%20Reflections.png


Estimated In-Room Response:
Estimated%20In-Room%20Response.png


Horizontal Frequency Response (0° to ±90°):
SPL%20Horizontal.png


Vertical Frequency Response (0° to ±40°):
SPL%20Vertical.png


Horizontal Contour Plot (not normalized):
Neumi%20BS5P%20with%20New%20EQ%2C%20Ports%20Stuffed_Horizontal_Spectrogram_Full.png


Horizontal Contour Plot (normalized):
Neumi%20BS5P%20with%20New%20EQ%2C%20Ports%20Stuffed%20Beamwidth_Horizontal.png


Vertical Contour Plot (not normalized):
Neumi%20BS5P%20with%20New%20EQ%2C%20Ports%20Stuffed_Vertical_Spectrogram_Full.png


Vertical Contour Plot (normalized):
Neumi%20BS5P%20with%20New%20EQ%2C%20Ports%20Stuffed%20Beamwidth_Vertical.png




Additional Measurements

On-Axis Response Linearity
Neumi%20BS5P%20with%20New%20EQ%2C%20Ports%20Stuffed%20FR_Linearity.png

“Globe” Plots
These plots are generated from exporting the Klippel data to text files. I then process that data with my own MATLAB script to provide what you see. These are not part of any software packages and are unique to my tests.
Horizontal Polar (Globe) Plot:
This represents the sound field at 2 meters - above 200Hz - per the legend in the upper left.
Neumi%20BS5P%20with%20New%20EQ%2C%20Ports%20Stuffed_360_Horizontal_Polar.png



Vertical Polar (Globe) Plot:
This represents the sound field at 2 meters - above 200Hz - per the legend in the upper left.
Neumi%20BS5P%20with%20New%20EQ%2C%20Ports%20Stuffed_360_Vertical_Polar.png



Harmonic Distortion
Harmonic Distortion at 86dB @ 1m:
Neumi%20BS5P%20with%20New%20EQ%2C%20Ports%20Stuffed%20%28Harmonic%20Distortion%2086dB%20%40%201m%29.png


Harmonic Distortion at 96dB @ 1m:
Neumi%20BS5P%20with%20New%20EQ%2C%20Ports%20Stuffed%20%28Harmonic%20Distortion%2096dB%20%40%201m%29.png


Near-Field Response
Nearfield response of individual drive units:
Neumi%20BS5P%20with%20New%20EQ%2C%20Ports%20Stuffed%20--%20Nearfield%20Measurements.png



Dynamic Range (Instantaneous Compression Test)
I simply forgot this test but if you are interested, please see previous test’s results.
Long Term Compression Tests
The below graphics indicate how much SPL is lost or gained in the long-term as a speaker plays at the same output level for 2 minutes, in intervals. Each graphic represents a different SPL: 86dB and 96dB both at 1 meter.
The purpose of this test is to illustrate how much (if at all) the output changes as a speaker’s components temperature increases (i.e., voice coils, crossover components).
The tests are conducted in this fashion:
  1. “Cold” logarithmic sine sweep (no stimulus applied beforehand)
  2. Multitone stimulus played at desired SPL/distance for 2 minutes; intended to represent music signal
  3. Interim logarithmic sine sweep (no stimulus applied beforehand) (Red in graphic)
  4. Multitone stimulus played at desired SPL/distance for 2 minutes; intended to represent music signal
  5. Final logarithmic sine sweep (no stimulus applied beforehand) (Blue in graphic)
The red and blue lines represent changes in the output compared to the initial “cold” test.
Neumi%20BS5P%20with%20New%20EQ%2C%20Ports%20Stuffed_Long_Term_86_Compression.png

Neumi%20BS5P%20with%20New%20EQ%2C%20Ports%20Stuffed_Long_Term_96_Compression.png




Parting / Random Thoughts
If you want to see the music I use for evaluating speakers subjectively, see my Spotify playlist.
  • Subjective listening was mainly in the nearfield to midfield, between 1 to 2 meters. Subjective listening was conducted at 80-95dB at these distances. Higher volumes were done simply to test the output capability in case one wants to try to sit further away.
  • With the speaker tested in the configuration discussed (again, Updated EQ, ports stuffed), this is an entirely different ballgame than with my previous testing. I mean, night and day. The midrange is so much more neutral (great track: Wishing Well by Terence Trent D’Arby). The response is much more neutral and doesn’t call attention to itself nearly. Gone is the bloated bass and the sharp treble.
  • These speakers exhibit an audible compression when played above about 90dB at a couple meters away. Therefore, they are best used in the near/midfield and not ideal for a large home theater setting, even if you plan to use a subwoofer.
  • I highly recommend using the EQ settings available from Neumi’s website linked in the opening of this review and stuffing the ports. This yields a much more neutral response that, in my humble opinion, represents the best value powered bookshelf speaker currently available at only $150, providing a multitude of input options and volume levels that would be reasonable for near and mid-field listening (note: not farfield listening at high SPL).
Bottom line is I can now proudly recommend these speakers with the aforementioned settings. With these settings, they still aren’t without issues but I truly feel they represent an excellent value at only $150.

Ultimately, if you update the firmware for the new EQ settings and stuff the port, you are left with a very capable speaker for reasonable volume levels and a lot of input options. Could this be a perfect option to use in lieu of a soundbar or hi-fi on a budget? I think so. Pair it with a subwoofer and you're in business!




DSP suggestions
I ran the on-axis response through REW’s automatic EQ generation with a flatness target of ±2dB and came up with the following:
  • Frequency = 1kHz, Gain = -3dB, Q = 2.373
  • Frequency = 6.78kHz, Gain = -2.4dB, Q = 2.472
  • Frequency = 13.38kHz, Gain = -2.2dB, Q = 1.000
REW%20EQ.png



If you have the means, I recommend using EQ to help flatten out the response and achieve a more neutral response, as a set of monitor speakers should provide. If you need help understanding how to use this, I encourage you to check out NoAudiophile’s page here which also has other DSP suggestions for various speakers. It is a great resource for this type of thing.


Support / Contribute
If you like what you see here and want to help me keep it going, please consider donating via PayPal (here). Donations help me pay for new items to test, hardware, miscellaneous items and costs of the site’s server space and bandwidth. All of which I otherwise pay out of pocket. So, if you can help chip in a few bucks, know that it is very much appreciated.

Alternatively, if you are interested in purchasing these speakers, please consider using my Amazon affiliate link on my site at the bottom. It yields me a small commission at no additional cost to you and allows me to keep providing you with sweet data to make educated purchase decisions.


You can also join my Facebook and YouTube pages if you would like to follow along with updates.


Hi,

Here is my take on the EQ.

The raw data with corrected ER and PIR:

Score no EQ: 4.3
With Sub: 7.2


Spinorama with no EQ:
  • Not as Flat as i would expect, maybe because the multimedia usage?
Neumi BS5P No EQ Spinorama.png

Directivity:
Better stay at tweeter height
Horizontally, better toe-in the speakers by 10/20deg and have the axis crossing in front of the listening location, might help dosing the upper range.
Neumi BS5P 2D surface Directivity Contour Only Data.png

Neumi BS5P LW better data.png

EQ design:

I have generated two EQs. The APO config files are attached.
  • The first one, labelled, LW is targeted at making the LW flat
  • The second, labelled Score, starts with the first one and adds the score as an optimization variable.
  • The EQs are designed in the context of regular stereo use i.e. domestic environment, no warranty is provided for a near field use in a studio environment although the LW might be better suited for this purpose.

Score EQ LW: 5.5
with sub: 8.3

Score EQ Score: 5.6
with sub: 8.3

Erin EQ Score: 5.9
with sub: 8.5


Code:
Neumi BS5P APO EQ LW 96000Hz
May202021-152456

Preamp: -2.5 dB

Filter 1: ON HPQ Fc 62.7 Hz Gain 0 dB Q 1.25
Filter 2: ON PK Fc 128.5 Hz Gain -1.35 dB Q 1.93
Filter 3: ON PK Fc 990 Hz Gain -3 dB Q 2.15
Filter 4: ON PK Fc 3278 Hz Gain -1.14 dB Q 1.5
Filter 5: ON PK Fc 7251 Hz Gain -1.36 dB Q 3.55
Filter 6: ON PK Fc 12312 Hz Gain -1.46 dB Q 0.92

Neumi BS5P APO EQ Score 96000Hz
May202021-151848

Preamp: -2.3 dB

Filter 1: ON HPQ Fc 62.3 Hz Gain 0 dB Q 1.25
Filter 2: ON PK Fc 127.3 Hz Gain -1.35 dB Q 1.35
Filter 3: ON PK Fc 970 Hz Gain -3.35 dB Q 1.98
Filter 4: ON PK Fc 3242 Hz Gain -1.59 dB Q 1.2
Filter 5: ON PK Fc 7071 Hz Gain -1.45 dB Q 3.74
Filter 6: ON PK Fc 12290 Hz Gain -2.29 dB Q 0.65

Neumi BS5P EQ Design.png


Spinorama EQ LW
Neumi BS5P LW EQ Spinorama.png


Spinorama EQ Score
Neumi BS5P Score EQ Spinorama.png


Spinorama Erin EQ
Neumi BS5P Erin EQ Spinorama.png


Zoom PIR-LW-ON
Neumi BS5P Zoom.png


Regression - Tonal
Neumi BS5P Regression - Tonal.png


Radar no EQ vs EQ score
Nice improvements
Neumi BS5P Radar.png


The rest of the plots is attached.
 

Attachments

  • Neumi BS5P APO EQ LW 96000Hz.txt
    346 bytes · Views: 37
  • Neumi BS5P APO EQ Score 96000Hz.txt
    352 bytes · Views: 28
  • Neumi BS5P Erin EQ Spinorama.png
    Neumi BS5P Erin EQ Spinorama.png
    160.3 KB · Views: 29
  • Neumi BS5P 2D surface Directivity Contour Data.png
    Neumi BS5P 2D surface Directivity Contour Data.png
    251.3 KB · Views: 42
  • Neumi BS5P 3D surface Vertical Directivity Data.png
    Neumi BS5P 3D surface Vertical Directivity Data.png
    451.1 KB · Views: 33
  • Neumi BS5P 3D surface Horizontal Directivity Data.png
    Neumi BS5P 3D surface Horizontal Directivity Data.png
    460.4 KB · Views: 31
  • Neumi BS5P Normalized Directivity data.png
    Neumi BS5P Normalized Directivity data.png
    426.8 KB · Views: 23
  • Neumi BS5P Raw Directivity data.png
    Neumi BS5P Raw Directivity data.png
    727.7 KB · Views: 30
  • Neumi BS5P Reflexion data.png
    Neumi BS5P Reflexion data.png
    227.6 KB · Views: 53
  • Neumi BS5P LW data.png
    Neumi BS5P LW data.png
    243.3 KB · Views: 23
  • Neumi BS5P Score EQ Spinorama.png
    Neumi BS5P Score EQ Spinorama.png
    157.8 KB · Views: 34
Last edited:

MZKM

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Hi,

Here is my take on the EQ.

The raw data with corrected ER and PIR:

Score no EQ: 4.3
With Sub: 7.2


Spinorama with no EQ:
  • Not as Flat as i would expect, maybe because the multimedia usage?
View attachment 130814
Directivity:
Better stay at tweeter height
Horizontally, better toe-in the speakers by 10/20deg and have the axis crossing in front of the listening location, might help dosing the upper range.
View attachment 130817
View attachment 130821
EQ design:

I have generated two EQs. The APO config files are attached.
  • The first one, labelled, LW is targeted at making the LW flat
  • The second, labelled Score, starts with the first one and adds the score as an optimization variable.
  • The EQs are designed in the context of regular stereo use i.e. domestic environment, no warranty is provided for a near field use in a studio environment although the LW might be better suited for this purpose.

Score EQ LW: 5.5
with sub: 8.3

Score EQ Score: 5.6
with sub: 8.3

Erin EQ Score: 5.9
with sub: 8.5


Code:
Neumi BS5P APO EQ LW 96000Hz
May202021-152456

Preamp: -2.5 dB

Filter 1: ON HPQ Fc 62.7 Hz Gain 0 dB Q 1.25
Filter 2: ON PK Fc 128.5 Hz Gain -1.35 dB Q 1.93
Filter 3: ON PK Fc 990 Hz Gain -3 dB Q 2.15
Filter 4: ON PK Fc 3278 Hz Gain -1.14 dB Q 1.5
Filter 5: ON PK Fc 7251 Hz Gain -1.36 dB Q 3.55
Filter 6: ON PK Fc 12312 Hz Gain -1.46 dB Q 0.92

Neumi BS5P APO EQ Score 96000Hz
May202021-151848

Preamp: -2.3 dB

Filter 1: ON HPQ Fc 62.3 Hz Gain 0 dB Q 1.25
Filter 2: ON PK Fc 127.3 Hz Gain -1.35 dB Q 1.35
Filter 3: ON PK Fc 970 Hz Gain -3.35 dB Q 1.98
Filter 4: ON PK Fc 3242 Hz Gain -1.59 dB Q 1.2
Filter 5: ON PK Fc 7071 Hz Gain -1.45 dB Q 3.74
Filter 6: ON PK Fc 12290 Hz Gain -2.29 dB Q 0.65

Spinorama EQ LW
View attachment 130813

Spinorama EQ Score
View attachment 130812

Spinorama Erin EQ
View attachment 130826

Zoom PIR-LW-ON
View attachment 130810

Regression - Tonal
View attachment 130811

Radar no EQ vs EQ score
Nice improvements
View attachment 130808

The rest of the plots is attached.
@hardisj, now reply back to Neumi and tell them to incorporate this EQ into the updated one
:p

I wonder what they are using to do this DSP in such a cheap speaker. Anyone know? Is it built-in to whatever amp they are using?
 

joentell

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I I am guessing JoeNTell is going to have to do an updated review as well.;)
I spent a ton of time the other night in order to reflash the firmware since I don't have any PC's so I had to run boot camp on my old non-M1 MacBook since the firmware cannot be flashed using a virtual machine running Windows (flash fails.)

I haven't released my original review because I've been busy moving, so I will end up amending my original review with a bit of my findings post-fix, but I will also keep my original review intact. Also, Neumi had not asked me once to revise my review.

They've just been very good about responding to our critiques. I think it's a win-win for the consumer and the company. The company gets to put out a better product into the market, the consumers have better products in their hands.

I believe that all future shipments will have the updated firmware, but any that have shipped with the initial EQ will be sold at a discounted rate. Might be good for someone with a PC, a screwdriver, and who doesn't mind some minor tinkering.
 

joentell

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They are considering it. This is the email I received from them a couple hours ago after they saw the updated review.

View attachment 130697
More companies should respond like this! This is the right way imo.

I always tell companies that negative feedback can be good if they're willing to respond properly by taking appropriate actions to fix issues.
 
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