My HomePods arrived about an hour ago.
Initial impressions: what a disappointment.
It’s just a very average sounding speaker. There’s no bass - there is no chance you could use this for a house party.
The vocals are too artificial and clinical. I assume this is a conscious effort from the audio team at Apple to have “crisp” vocals however they’ve gone too far.
And it’s really quiet. Anything below 50% is completely futile and 100% is equivalent to my Sonos Play 5 (first gen) at 60-70%.
There will be a sigh of relief in the Sonos offices this morning. The reviewers who claimed the HomePod to be the best speaker under $1000 are just out of their minds.
Still, I’ll give it a shot, see if it grows on me or tunes better over time with the echolocation stuff.
(And, I’ve tried two, so not likely a defective unit.)