Let’s get the announcement out of the way first. Libratone just let loose a pair of high-end wireless AirPlay speakers for the home: the $699 / €699 / £599 Libratone Live tower or the $1,299 / €1,199 / £1,099 Libratone Lounge soundbar. That’s a lot of coin for the average consumer. Question is, will they be worth the price when they ship in September?

Before attempting to answer that, let me say this: I love music, be it delta blues, beat jazz, Detroit electronic, or hard driving rock-n-roll. It’s a mood thing. And I’ve been streaming wireless music around my house for more than a decade. My adventures in wireless audio began with some interference-prone 900MHz speakers weakly riding an FM signal. Those were replaced with a set of amplified speakers attached to a Bluetooth 1.1 adapter kit which I later replaced with an AirPort Express in 2004. Four years ago I was treated to wireless music nirvana with a multi-zone Sonos system that I recently enabled for AirPlay. The Sonos is nearly always on, sometimes for critical listening, sometimes for the after dinner family dance party, but more often than not it’s just music in the background. I’m no audiophile. Hell, I can’t even play an instrument (though I’ve purchased a few to assuage my shame). And you know what? That’s ok, I’ve come to accept my position in the fat chewy center of the consumer audio market. So, how does Libratone stack up? Read on to find out.