When it comes to audio, you can definitely say I’ve been upping my game lately. Late last year, I bought a high-end Bluetooth headset. It’s not just great for the road, but it also comes in quite useful whenever I want to listen to my music at home – which I do all the time. And I mean that literally. Unfortunately, walking around the house with a Bluetooth headset is not all it’s cracked up to be (even if it’s in a bathrobe and playing Wow by Beck on full blast. It’s a lot less comfortable than you’d think and after a long day working, discomfort is not what I aim for. And since the only speakers I currently own are the ones in my iMac, I thought I’d try out something new to satisfy my new-found need for high-end audio. Enter the Como Audio Duetto!

Como Audio DuettoThe Como Audio Duetto looked right at home on my credenza. Art by Woody van Amen via Kunstuitleen Rotterdam, vase by Maarten Vrolijk for Rosenthal (and yes, I was busy choosing colors from the Little Greene paint color chart for a new project I’m doing). 

So, here are the three things that I want from an audio system. First and foremost, it has to look good. And yes, I know what you’re thinking right now – and I hear you loud and clear. But for an interior-design aficionado like myself, looks always come first. I can spend months finding just the right lamp, so why shouldn’t an audio system meet the same high standards? Needless to say, it needs great sound. Not necessarily party hardy volume 10 loudness (what would the neighbors think?), but it would be nice to make out all the details in a song when I’m working or relaxing. And then finally, I want to listen to my favorite music on Spotify and the only internet radio station I listen to, KCRW Eclectic 24 – and I want the experience to be one hundred per cent hassle-free.

Now, when I unboxed my Como Audio Duetto, I have to say I was pretty impressed by its sleek looks. The Duetto looks simple yet luxurious and its glossy piano black finish definitely gave it a high-end feel. Sweet! Setting up the Duetto couldn’t have been easier – I didn’t even need the manual. All I had to do was connect it to my Wi-Fi, wait for the obligatory software update to download and bing, bang, boom, I was all set. It was a surprisingly smooth experience, especially after my epic struggle with the Sonos system I have in my bedroom. What a nightmare that was – and don’t even get me started on their frustratingly clumsy interface. But I digress.

First up, Spotify! After all, what good would a new audio system be if it can’t handle the only music app I will ever use? Through the years, I’ve meticulously compiled playlists in just about every genre you can think of and I cannot imagine living life without them. In fact, I’m such a big Spotify fan, that I asked everyone I interviewed for my upcoming book to create their own playlist so that readers can follow it by scanning a Spotify code. All I had to do to listen to Spotify on my Duetto, was to select it in the bottom-right corner. Easy peasy!

Using the Como Audio remote, I then looked up my go-to internet radio station, KCRW Eclectic 24. It’s always a surprise what song they play next – and that is just the way I want it. What point is there in only playing songs you know when there is so much great music from all over the world simply begging to be discovered on KCRW’s Rhythm Planet? And why stick to dance songs you’ve heard a thousand times over when you can also tune in to Mario Cotto’s kaleidoscopic Dada Dance Party? I rest my case.

Como AudioI thought I’d take another photo of my credenza while listening to my favorite music on KCRW.com. You like?

“There is one thing I would change about the Como Audio Duetto. You see, if you want to stream sound straight from your browser – like from YouTube or KCRW’s on demand radio shows – you need to hook up a Chromecast Audio.” That’s what I wrote down originally.. BUT…right before I published this blogpost, I found out that the Como Audio Duetto has a Bluetooth mode that allows me to stream all my audio from my iMac (or any other device). And the fact that I can do so, is a YUGE improvement on the frustratingly walled garden that is my Sonos system. No wonder I moved it out of my living room a long time ago!

Long story short: After two weeks with the Como Audio Duetto, I didn’t really want to send it back. It looked wonderful, featured excellent sound quality that was more than enough for my living room and it played almost everything I wanted to. Yup, I’m definitely buying one and I might even go for the the Ambiente bundle – fancy that!

Interiorator x Como Audio – The Spotify playlist

I thought it would be cool to share with you a special Interiorator x Como Audio playlist. It’s a small selection of all the music I’ve discovered lately on Spotify and KCRW.com. All you have to do is open this link.  Enjoy!