If you want a bedside system to lull you into slumber or wake you up, separate speakers are a tad cumbersome. But something like the Yamaha TSX-130, with its long, flat top almost inviting you to leave your glasses, watch and false teeth on it overnight, is just the ticket.
Glorified clock radio
In spec-terms, the TSX-130 includes most of what you might reasonably demand from what is, fundamentally, a clock/radio with pretensions.
Plenty of punch and scale
Playing either a CD or uncompressed iPod file, the TSX-130 initially sounds gratifyingly rich and full-bodied.
With the five-position EQ set to ‘normal’, which is where it’s happiest, there’s punch and scale beyond what a plastic breezeblock equipped with two 8cm drivers ought reasonably be capable of.
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The top of the frequency range is well judged, with none of the clamour fashionable among less-capable desktop systems.
But – and this is equally apparent with any source – that low-frequency generosity is to the detriment of the midrange, where voices can be cowed by the kerfuffle going on below.
There’s a slight lack of dynamic ability, too, as the bass follows its own agenda.
The convenience of the Yamaha TSX-130 can’t be denied, though, and its flaws are far from fatal. Consider it a strong contender for the spot on your bedside table.