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IKEA SYMFONISK Speaker lamp Speaker Review

Tested using Methodology v0.8
Reviewed Mar 03, 2022 at 09:46 am
IKEA  SYMFONISK Speaker lamp Picture
6.8
Music
5.8
Videos/Movies
6.3
Podcasts
3.0
Voice Assistant
4.5
Outdoors
Bluetooth
No
Wi-Fi
Yes
Speakerphone
No
Voice Assistant
No
Battery Powered
No

The IKEA SYMFONISK Speaker lamp is a collaboration between Sonos and IKEA, which you can add to your existing Sonos ecosystem, like the IKEA SYMFONISK Bookshelf speaker. It has a unique dual function as a speaker and a lamp to help it blend in with your home decor. It comes with a room correction feature to adjust its sound according to the unique acoustics of the room it's placed in. With this feature enabled, the speaker has a bright sound profile overall that adds a touch of sparkle to higher-pitched voices and sibilants like 'S' and 'T'; you can customize its sound using the bass and treble adjustments in its Sonos S2 companion app. Unfortunately, the room correction feature is currently only available with iOS devices. This Wi-Fi speaker also isn't Bluetooth-compatible, so you can only play your audio via an internet connection.

Our Verdict

6.8 Music

The IKEA Speaker lamp is alright for music. With its room correction feature turned on, it has a bright sound profile that adds a touch of sparkle to higher-pitched voices and sibilants like 'S' and 'T'. Its fairly balanced mid-range ensures vocals and lead instruments sound clear and present in the mix. Unfortunately, it lacks low-bass, so you can't feel the deep thump and rumble in bass-heavy music like EDM or hip-hop. Fortunately, you can tweak its sound to your liking using the bass and treble adjustments in its companion app.

Pros
  • Bass and treble adjustments.
  • Wide-sounding soundstage.
Cons
  • Room correction feature only available with iOS devices.
  • Lots of compression at max volume.
5.8 Videos/Movies

The IKEA Speaker lamp is sub-par for videos and movies. With its room correction feature enabled, it has a bright sound profile that ensures voices and dialogue sound clear and detailed in the mix. However, it lacks low-bass, so you can't feel the thump and rumble typically present in action-packed scenes. It requires a second unit to play stereo audio and downmixes stereo content to mono when using it on its own, which isn't as immersive. There's also a lot of compression present at max volume that degrades the quality of your audio as you bump up the volume. That said, if you own a Sonos soundbar, you can link it to the speaker when you want to upgrade your setup.

Pros
  • Bass and treble adjustments.
  • Low Apple AirPlay latency.
Cons
  • Room correction feature only available with iOS devices.
  • Lots of compression at max volume.
  • Requires second unit for stereo audio.
6.3 Podcasts

The IKEA Speaker lamp is passable for podcasts. With its room correction feature turned on, it has a bright sound profile which adds a touch of sparkle and detail to voices in dialogue. It has good directivity, thanks to its 360-degree design, meaning you can hear your podcasts and audiobooks clearly from most angles. Unfortunately, this large speaker isn't very portable due to its wired design, so you can't easily move it from room to room. There's also a lot of compression present at max volume that degrades audio quality as you increase the volume level.

Pros
  • Bass and treble adjustments.
  • Wide-sounding soundstage.
Cons
  • Lots of compression at max volume.
  • Not very portable.
3.0 Voice Assistant

The IKEA lamp speaker doesn't support voice assistants. However, you can control the speaker via an Alexa or Google Assistant-enabled third-party device.

4.5 Outdoors

The IKEA lamp speaker isn't designed for outdoor use and needs to stay wired to a power source to work.

  • 6.8 Music
  • 5.8 Videos/Movies
  • 6.3 Podcasts
  • 3.0 Voice Assistant
  • 4.5 Outdoors
  1. Updated Mar 03, 2022: Review published.
  2. Updated Feb 18, 2022: Early access published.

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
Design
Style
RGB Lights No

The IKEA speaker lamp is sleek and designed to easily blend in with your home decor. Its round, cylindrical base stands vertically and is tightly wrapped in fabric. The lamp speaker was tested with its black fabric lampshade on, though you can switch it out for a glass shade instead. That said, while a light bulb comes included with the speaker base, its glass and fabric shades need to be purchased separately. You can find the speaker and its shades in black and white.

3.6
Design
Portability
Volume
1,550 in³ (25,401 cm³)
Weight
5.5 lbs (2.5 kg)
Power Source
AC Only
One-Hand Carry
No

The speaker isn't very portable. It's fairly large and needs to remain wired to a power source to work, so you can't easily move it from room to room. Since it's specifically for use at home, it isn't suitable for outdoor use.

Note: The test results above represent the volume and weight of the IKEA lamp speaker with its fabric lampshade. With its glass shade, it weighs 7.5 lbs (3.4 kg), and has a volume of 1076 in³ (17,640 cm³) . With no shade, it weighs 4.4 lbs (2 kg), and has a volume of 422 in³ (6,919 cm³).

6.4
Design
Build Quality
Material Quality
Good
Water Resistance
No
Dust Resistance
No
Impact Resistance
Unspecified
Floats In Water
No

The speaker's build quality isn't bad. Its base is mostly made of plastic and wrapped in tight polyester fabric. It sits vertically on four rubber feet, and its fabric and glass lampshades screw on top of the lamp base. That said, the lampshades are fairly fragile, and you need to handle them with care. The fabric shade feels like it can easily rip if you aren't too careful with it, and while the glass shade comes in two parts that feel fairly sturdy, the glass can still break if you accidentally drop it.

6.8
Design
Controls
Ease Of Use
Good
Feedback
Good
Music Play/Pause
Yes (Physical)
Call Answer/End
No
Volume Up/Down
Yes (Physical)
Track Next/Previous
Yes (Physical)
Microphone On/Off
No
Additional Controls
Yes

The IKEA speaker lamp has easy-to-use controls. You can double-press the Play/Pause button to skip to your next track and triple-press it to backtrack. You can also long-press it to add the audio you're listening to on this speaker to another compatible speaker. The indicator light underneath it lights solid white when the speaker connects to a network and solid green once you reach minimum volume. There are + and - buttons to control the volume, and the speaker emits an audible tone as you increase and decrease its volume level. There's a button at the bottom front of the speaker to turn the lamp's light bulb on and off.

Design
In The Box

  • Quick guide
  • IKEA SYMFONISK Speaker lamp
  • 4.3W light bulb
  • Ethernet cable
  • Power cable

Note: The IKEA lamp speaker can only currently be purchased from IKEA. The fabric and glass lampshades are not included in the purchase of the speaker and need to be purchased separately.

Sound
7.4
Sound
Frequency Response Accuracy
Slope
0.88
Std. Err.
2.94 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
46.2 Hz
High-Frequency Extension
18.5 kHz

The IKEA lamp speaker has a decent frequency response accuracy. It has a bright sound profile that adds a touch of sparkle to higher-pitched voices and sibilants like 'S' and 'T'. Its fairly balanced mid-range ensures vocals and lead instruments sound clear and present in the mix. However, it lacks low-bass, so you can't feel the deep thump and rumble typically present in bass-heavy music like EDM or hip-hop. Fortunately, there are bass and treble adjustments in its Sonos S2 app to tweak its sound to your liking

Note: This lamp speaker comes with a room correction feature, which Sonos calls 'Trueplay', that optimizes the speaker's sound according to the acoustics of the room it's placed in. The sound tests were conducted with Trueplay turned on. Unfortunately, this feature is currently only available with iOS devices. It was tested with its fabric lampshade, which causes a slight bump in the low-bass range, as opposed to the glass shade. You can see this difference here, though it isn't very noticeable when listening to audio.

Sound
Raw Frequency Response
Binaural Recording @ 1m
Binaural Recording @ 2m
6.4
Sound
Soundstage
Directivity Index
3.00 dB
Stereo
No (mono)

The lamp speaker's soundstage performance isn't bad. It needs to be paired to another speaker to play stereo audio and downmixes stereo content to mono when using it on its own, which isn't as immersive. That said, it has very good directivity, meaning you can hear your audio clearly from most angles.

5.3
Sound
Dynamics
SPL @ Max Volume
87.8 dB SPL
DRC @ Max Volume
5.27 dB

The IKEA lamp speaker has disappointing dynamics. It doesn't get loud enough to fill a large crowded space with sound. However, it's still loud enough to fill smaller areas like your bedroom. Unfortunately, there's a lot of compression present at max volume that degrades the quality of your audio as you increase the speaker's volume.

Active Features
0
Active Features
Battery
Battery Life
N/A
Charge Time
N/A
Power Saving
No
Charging Port
No Battery
0
Active Features
Voice Assistant
Alexa
No
Google Assistant
No
Siri
No
Voice Activation
No
Microphone Mute
No Microphone
Far-Field Performance
No Microphone
Ambient Noise Performance
No Microphone

The lamp speaker doesn't support voice assistants. That said, you can still control it via an Alexa or Google Assistant-enabled third-party device.

9.3
Active Features
App
App Name
Sonos S2
iOS
Yes
Android
Yes
EQ
Bass/Treble
Stereo Pair Mode
Yes
Party Mode
Yes
Multi-Room
Yes

The Sonos S2 app is fantastic. It features bass and treble sliders to tweak the speaker lamp's sound profile to your liking. You can also use the app to connect the speaker to another compatible Sonos speaker when you want to create a stereo pair, or to multiple other speakers when you want to play different audio in different rooms of your home at once. There's also a room correction feature that optimizes the speaker's audio according to the acoustics of your room, which Sonos calls 'Trueplay'. However, this feature is currently only available with iOS devices.

Connectivity
Connectivity
Wired
Aux Input
No
USB Audio
No
Other Ports
Yes

The speaker lamp comes with an Ethernet port underneath its base to connect it to your network.

0
Connectivity
Bluetooth
Bluetooth Version
No Bluetooth
Bluetooth iOS Latency
N/A
Bluetooth Android Latency
N/A
Bluetooth Range
N/A
Multi-Device Pairing
No
7.6
Connectivity
Wi-Fi
Wi-Fi Version
Unspecified
Wi-Fi Frequency Band
2.4GHz
Apple AirPlay
Yes
AirPlay Latency
5 ms
Google Chromecast
No
Chromecast Latency
N/A

The IKEA speaker lamp is Wi-Fi compatible. It supports Apple AirPlay and has very low latency over this connection, so the audio you hear and the visuals you see are in sync when watching videos and movies. Unfortunately, it doesn't have Chromecast built-in, and it doesn't support Bluetooth.

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

The IKEA Speaker lamp comes in Black and White. This review represents the test results for the Black variant; you can see its label here. Both variants will perform similarly.

If you come across any other variants of this speaker, let us know in the discussions, and we'll update the review.

Note: IKEA released the first generation of its SYMFONISK speaker lamp in 2019. The test results in this review represent the second generation of this speaker, released in 2021.

Compared To Other Speakers

The IKEA Speaker lamp is a collaboration between Sonos and IKEA, like the IKEA SYMFONISK Bookshelf speaker. Though its sound profile isn't as balanced as that of the Sonos Move and doesn't produce a bass that's as extended as that of the Sonos Five, this home speaker has a unique dual function as a speaker and a lamp that helps it easily blend in with your home decor. With its room correction feature enabled, it has a bright sound profile overall, and there are bass and treble adjustments you can use to tweak its sound to your liking. Unfortunately, it doesn't have built-in voice assistants like the Sonos Move. Also, like many Sonos speakers, it isn't Bluetooth-compatible, and the room correction feature is only currently available with iOS devices.

See our recommendations for the best home speakers, the best Sonos speakers, and the best smart speakers.

Sonos One SL

The IKEA SYMFONISK Speaker lamp is a slightly better speaker than the Sonos One SL, though they perform similarly. The IKEA speaker can produce a slightly more extended low-bass. It has better directivity, resulting in a wider-sounding soundstage. It also has a dual function as a speaker and a lamp. That said, the One SL is smaller in size. It also has a bit less compression present at max volume, so your audio quality doesn't degrade as much as you bump up the volume.

Sonos One Gen 2

The Sonos One Gen 2 and the IKEA SYMFONISK Speaker lamp are both Wi-Fi speakers designed for use at home. The One Gen 2 offers great voice assistant support with Alexa and Google Assistant built-in. With its room correction feature enabled, it has a boomy sound profile. That said, the SYMFONISK is a collaboration between IKEA and Sonos. It has a dual function as a speaker and a lamp. With room correction enabled, it has a bright sound profile, though it can produce a more extended low-bass than the One Gen 2. It also has better directivity, resulting in a wider-sounding soundstage.

IKEA SYMFONISK Bookshelf

The IKEA SYMFONISK Bookshelf and the IKEA SYMFONISK Speaker lamp are both Wi-Fi speakers from a collaboration between IKEA and Sonos designed to blend in with your home decor. You can place the Bookshelf speaker horizontally or vertically, and you can mount it to your wall. It can get slightly louder than the Speaker lamp, with significantly less compression present at max volume, so audio quality doesn't degrade as much as you bump up the volume. That said, the Speaker lamp offers a better-balanced sound profile that can produce a slightly more extended low-bass than the Bookshelf. It also has better directivity resulting in a wider-sounding soundstage.

JBL Charge 5

The JBL Charge 5 and the IKEA SYMFONISK Speaker lamp are for different uses. The JBL is a well-built Bluetooth speaker designed to be portable and easy to carry along with you on the move. It has less compression present at max volume, and its sound profile is also more balanced out-of-the-box. The IKEA model has a dual function as a Wi-Fi speaker and a lamp and is designed for use at home and to blend in with your decor. It can produce a more extended low-bass with its room correction feature enabled. It also offers a more open-sounding soundstage and supports Apple AirPlay. However, its room correction feature is only available with iOS devices.

Sonos Move

The Sonos Move is a better speaker than the IKEA SYMFONISK Speaker lamp. The Move is a portable speaker that's both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi-compatible. It has a better-balanced sound profile and can get louder with a bit less compression at max volume, so audio quality doesn't degrade as much as you increase its volume. It's battery-powered and better-built, so you can take it outdoors with you. It also offers fantastic voice assistant support with Alexa and Google Assistant built-in. That said, the SYMFONISK is a collaboration between IKEA and Sonos that has a dual function as a Wi-Fi speaker and a lamp.

Bose Home Speaker 500

The Bose Home Speaker 500 is a better speaker than the IKEA SYMFONISK Speaker lamp. The Bose offers fantastic voice assistant support with Alexa and Google Assistant built-in. It can play stereo content without downmixing it to mono, which is more immersive. It has better directivity resulting in a more open-sounding soundstage, and it can get louder with less compression present at max volume. It's also Wi-Fi and Bluetooth-compatible. However, the IKEA is has a dual function as a Wi-Fi speaker and a lamp and is designed to blend in with your home decor. It can also produce a more extended low-bass than the Bose.

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