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What Is a Wireless Stereo System?

Cordless phones can interfere with a wireless stereo system.
Wireless stereo systems allow for communication between components without wired connections.
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  • Written By: H. Bliss
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Last Modified Date: 02 October 2014
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A wireless stereo system is a set of equipment used to play sound through stereo speakers without requiring wires to connect the speakers. Generally, this type of stereo system involves a media player connected to a wireless stereo receiver that transmits a signal to wireless-ready speakers placed within range of the speakers. This type of sound equipment is usually used to broadcast sound throughout a building or to set up surround sound for a home theater. Some wireless stereo systems can be controlled remotely using Smartphones.

Advantages to a wireless stereo system include improved safety and ease in setup. In a surround-sound setup for home theater, a wireless stereo system can broadcast multiple sound channels to multiple speakers without running wire through the room. Wired stereo systems for surround sound or multi-room sound can be inconvenient because they require running wires to the speakers connected to the stereo system.

When connecting sound to speakers placed in multiple rooms, wires need to be run through walls or under carpets to hide them and to prevent the sound wires from becoming tripping hazards. Wireless sound systems can also be particularly advantageous for installation in buildings with multiple stories. Using a wireless stereo system also reduces the risk of fire caused by damaged or improperly installed wires.

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One disadvantage to a wireless stereo system is potential poor sound quality. Other wireless signals in the area may interfere with the sound signal, degrading or interrupting the sound transmission to the speakers. If a neighbor has a transmitter broadcasting wireless sound on the same channel, the speakers may receive the neighbor transmitter's sound instead of, or in addition to, the intended wireless sound.

Wireless sound can be picked up by neighboring wireless systems, which can create privacy problems for a user who does not want neighbors picking up his transmitted sound. A cordless phone may interject a telephone conversation into the wireless stereo system broadcast if the phone is operating on the same wireless channel. Wireless speakers placed on the outside edge of the range of the wireless transmitter generally receive lower-quality sound due to signal degradation. A user can combat signal degradation at the edge of the wireless range by using amplifiers to extend the range of the sound.

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