Want to share some music with other people in the same room? Just turn up your speakers. Want to do it without having everyone in the room listen in… or just want to use your favorite headphones instead of the lousy speaker built into your TV? Then you might need to run a bunch of cables and plug them into headphone Y-adapters.
Ekko Audio has another solution: the company is running a crowdfunding campaign for a wireless audio hub, cleverly called HUB. Just plug the HUB into your TV, stereo system, or other audio device and then plug your headphones or speakers into the little, battery-powered adapters and you can have up to 10 people listen to the same audio at once.
HUB creates a private 802.11ac WiFi connection between the audio hub and the receivers and offers a range of around 50 feet (or up to 100 feet if there are no walls or other objects obstructing the path).
Ekko says the system supports 96 kHz / 24-bit audio, features low-latency, and the hub accepts input from 3.5mm, RCA, or TOSLINK optical inputs.
The individual receivers offer up to 4.5 hours of battery life, and they charge wirelessly when you place them on top of the hub. Each receiver also has an LED indicator, volume buttons, a mute button, and a 3.5mm jack for connecting your headphones.
The system isn’t exactly cheap: a HUB Mini with two receivers is priced at $169 (although there are some special prices for early birds), and a standard HUB with four receivers is going for $249 (which is said to be $50 off the eventual retail price). There are some early bird specials for that version too.
You’ll also have to wait a while to get your hands on a HUB system: the first units aren’t expected to ship until the summer of 2017.