A Flowering Speaker 

When I hear the words “Dragon Lily” it always seems to evoke memories of tales based on espionage featured in numerous old movies that were popular in days gone by. However “Dragon Lily” is also the name of a flowering plant and a product from Nakamichi. It should not come as a surprise to discover that it is the technology device rather than the horticultural one that is the subject of this review.

Nakamichi Dragon Lily
click image to enlarge

The Nakamichi Dragon Lily is a speaker system although I am a little hesitant as to whether a single device can really qualify for the system designation.  Of course it could be argued that the various connectivity options available with this product are the reason why it is deemed a system.  Options are available for Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, USB and AUX connections.

This single speaker unit, with dimensions of 258 x 331 x 256mm (W x H x D) has the shape of a bulb just prior to the flower emerging from the confines of the enclosing leaves.  With its black coating and unusual shape, this is a device that is not going to pass unnoticed whether it is positioned in leisure or work areas as it delivers its audio output to the waiting audience.

Connection sockets for mains power, AUX and USB are located at the rear of the device, near the bottom, along with a toggle for switching between AP and Client mode.  A circular, lacquered black control panel is mounted on the top of the speaker.  Arranged around the rim of the lower half of this panel are touch sensitive buttons.  Positioned to the left of the power button are those for selecting USB, Bluetooth or AUX mode while those for volume up and down plus Wi-Fi are on the right.  An area for NFC takes up a central potion on the panel for activating an existing Bluetooth connection.  A flat, cone shaped remote control unit mimics most of the control features.  This remote unit is easily misplaced as I discovered more than once.

The Dragon Lily can be set up to use Wi-Fi in two separate modes using UPnP (Universal Plug and Play).  The user Manual recommends the use of BubbleUPnP app which can be downloaded from the Play Store for use with Wi-Fi.  You can create a set-up whereby your smartphone is linked to the Dragon Lily via its built-in Wi-Fi network to increase the range you would get with Bluetooth.  This requires the Dragon Lily to be in AP mode using the toggle switch on the base of the speaker.  You can also configure the Dragon Lily to connect to a home network when it is in Client mode.  Both of these procedures are covered in the User Manual and could be off-putting for a novice user.

Setting up a Bluetooth link is straightforward and should not cause any problems.  A default password of “0000” is available but I found that this was not required with the connections I made.  Once established, you can activate a Bluetooth connection through the use of NFC if your mobile device supports this technology.  Furthermore, if your mobile device supports AVRCP (Audio Video Remote Control Profile) then the supplied remote control unit can be used to pause, play and skip between tracks in either direction.  I am pleased to report that the occasional dropping of the Bluetooth signal I encountered with another Nakamichi product was not presence with the Dragon Lily.

As mentioned earlier, there are also connection options for AUX and USB.  Leads for both are meant to be included in the package but the USB lead was missing from my review sample.  It is important to note that USB connectivity does not include flash sticks or other purely storage devices in its functionality.  For USB connectivity, you need to attach a device, such as an iPod or MP3 player, to provide the music playing feature.

The Dragon Lily’s audio output is handled by a front-mounted 25W speaker and a downward-pointing 50W sub-woofer.  Tiny feet on the base of the Dragon Lily ensure there is enough room in which the sub-woofer can operate.  While the Dragon Lily’s output performance is of a reasonable standard, I feel its appearance and range of connectivity options are its major plus points making this a product that will appeal more to the fashion conscious rather than a Hi-Fi enthusiast.  The Nakamichi Dragon Lily is available from Amazon priced at £239.99.

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Comment by Boogs68, 3 June 2015 20:19

The default for me was 12345678

Comment by Vince, 30 May 2015 22:18

Any idea what the default password is to connect to the Dragon Lily in AP mode?

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OverallNakamichi Dragon Lily rated 76 out of 100

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