Q Acoustic’s first active loudspeaker – the Q Active 200 – was first launched in 2021 and is now included in the Q Active 400 floorstanders by its older brother.
Sales of the Q Active 400 were scheduled to begin in January 2021, but the release date fell to May 2021. We reviewed the Q Active 200 in March and enjoyed its ‘Swiss-Army Knife’ performance. Similar performance is expected from the larger model here.
Price and availability
The Q Active 200 bookshelf speaker is now available for £ 1499 (per pair). The Google Hub version goes on sale in November, while the Alexa version (same price) is scheduled to be released later in 2021.
The Q Active 400 floorstanders are on sale in its Google Hub version, priced at £ 2299 / $ 2999 / € 2999. Like the Q Active 200, the Works with Alexa version is expected to go on sale later in 2021.
Q active 200 and 400 specifications
Q acoustics designed both speakers from the ground up to provide an uncompromising and versatile high-resolution system that could play music effectively from any source.
The Q Active range features Class D amplification, eliminating the need for an external amp or receiver. Both models use twin Balanced Mode Radiator (BMR) drive units in an offset configuration, which Q Acoustic claims makes the sound spread widely, creating a larger sweet spot in the process, so listeners sit wherever they are. Can hear the same sound.
Each speaker has a switch to specify the left and right channels behind it, while the other informs the position of the speaker so that Q Actives can fix their low-frequency response for the best possible sound.
A wireless control hub is supplied (as well as a remote) and can be configured for a built-in Chromecast or “works with Alexa”; Which opens the speaker to an array of wired and wireless sources. The hub serves as a connection to your home network via wired or wireless, and accepts audio signals of up to 32-bit / 192kHz before being converted to 24-bit / 96kHz.
There is compatibility with Bluetooth, AirPlay 2, Roon, UPnP (for streaming from a computer or NAS drive) and Spotify Connect for wireless sources. Supported music streaming services such as Tidal, Cubus, Amazon Music, Apple Music and Deezer have a wife, although control for these apps is done through a native streaming app, not an app La Sonos.
The control hub has HDMI ARC, optical digital input, analog line-level input and subwoofer out connections. A turntable can be plugged into the hub through its built-in moving magnets phono stage.
And what about the speakers themselves? The Q Active 200 standmount features a 2.25-inch BMR driver, with a rear-firing 4.5-inch long subwoofer with a waveguide to help shape “outstanding low-frequency bass performance”. There are six discrete amplifiers that power the Q Active 200 with a power of 280W. An optional accessory is the A FS75 floor stand (£ 349) inspired by the concept 300’s tensegrity stand, which employs a four-legged structure to eliminate unwanted vibrations.
The Q Active 400 has the same BMR drive unit arrangement, but comes with 8 discrete amplifiers that power the speaker at 440W. Another difference is the two rear-firing 4.5 subwoofers – one at the top and one at the bottom. This configuration is said to neutralize internal standing waves inside the cabinet, reducing unwanted resonance for a cleaner, tighter bass performance. Both speakers will come in white and black finishes.