Tech, Autos, & Gear in Layman's Terms Since 2006


March 15, 2012 • Reviews

Kanex AirBlue Portable Bluetooth Music Receiver Review

Update: This contest is now closed, and the winner has been announced on Facebook. Thank you for playing, and keep an eye out for more Gear Diary giveaways! =)
GearDiary AirBlue 001

Whether it is via AirPlay or through my Sonos system, I’m into wireless music these days. I love not having to physically dock a device in order to get the music flowing. More than that, I love being able to keep my device with me and then, regardless of where I am in the house, change the track or the volume. The problem is that the least expensive Sonos speaker component is $299, and AirPlay speakers are equally expensive. Either are worth the cost in my opinion, but what if you already have speakers that are not wirelessly enabled or you are looking for something inexpensive and, as a result, it is not wirelessly enabled? That where Kanex’s AirBlue comes in.

The AirBlue lets you turn any speaker with an Aux In port into a Bluetooth enabled speaker. Best of all, if does so simply and inexpensively.

Lets take a look and then give two of them away!

GearDiary AirBlue 003

From the Company:

The Kanex AirBlue™ is a portable Bluetooth-based music receiver that simply enables you to wirelessly play, listen and control all your favorite media from your iPod touch, iPhone or MP3 player through your home stereo or speakers.

Simply connect the receiver to your home stereo system with the included cables, and then pair your device to the AirBlue. Stream wirelessly to listen to, share, and control your music from up to 33 feet away. The AirBlue receiver uses Bluetooth v2.1 with EDR to provide you with high fidelity and premium sound.

GearDiary AirBlue 006

As you can see, the AirBlue comes with the Bluetooth device (look kinda like a flying saucer doesn’t it?), a USB cable for charging, a 3.5,, cable for connecting the AirBlue to a 3.5mm Aux In port and a 3.5mm to RL cable.

GearDiary AirBlue 007

Pairing is simple. You just press and hold the button in the center of the disk.


Within a few seconds the familiar flashing blue light will indicate that the unit is ready to pair. From there you simple go to the Bluetooth setup on your device and select the AirBlue from the menu. The AirBlue is truly universal as it can be paired with 8 devices at a time.

It takes 4-5 hours to charge and then provides up to 10 hours of wireless streaming on the go. Of course, if you connect it to a power source you’ll get nonstop streaming.

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Convenient and portable: Enjoy the convenience of portability by taking the AirBlue anywhere you go. Stream directly to an existing stereo, a friend’s home entertainment center, or even in the car.

And while I primarily see this as a means to stream music at home or in the office it can also come in handy if your car stereo doesn’t have Bluetooth but does have an Aux In port. That was the case with my Subaru Outback and this would have come in rather handy.

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Control Bluetooth devices over AV: Share, control and listen to your favorite playlist or podcasts wirelessly using the Kanex AirBlue through your home-theater AV receiver or powered speakers using the included audio cable.

You can also use the AirBlue with your home theater setup which can save you on the expense of going out and buying a wirelessly enable system.

GearDiary AirBlue 008

And as you can see, the entire setup is simple and straightforward, even if your AirBlue is drawing power from an AC adapter.


I’ve been using an AirBlue with the Altec Lansing speaker I keep in my work study for the past two weeks. It is simple to use, sounds good and lets me cut the cables. And at $49 it is far less expensive than going out and buying a new speaker system. What more could you ask for? (Except to win one for free… learn more below.) Details and ordering information can be found here.

MSRP: $49

What I Like: Small; Easy to set up and use; Universal (although the product page indicates using it primarily with Apple products for some reason); Small, low profile that doesn’t draw attention

What Needs Improvement: Nothing; This is a great little gizmo that turns pretty much any sound system into a wireless sound system

Win one of two brand new AirBlue Portable Bluetooth Music Receivers!!

We have two to give away and winning could not be easier. To enter to win leave a comment below telling us why you want one. Then, please help us do some good in the world by voting here in the Zinio Influencers Contest. (We would also appreciate you tweeting it!!)

The winners will be announced on our Facebook page so make sure you have “Liked” us!!

The fine print–
1. This contest will be open until Friday March 23; we will announce the winner shortly thereafter on Facebook.

2. Shipping address must be in the USA

3. The winners will be announced on our Facebook page only, and will have 24 hours to contact us. After 24 hours new winners will be picked.

14 Responses to " Kanex AirBlue Portable Bluetooth Music Receiver Review "

  1. I would really like an Airblue Portable Bluetooth Music Receiver so I could listen to  the all the music on my 32GB micro in my cellphone from my audio system in my bedroom.

  2. Branden Wilson says:

    Oh I could really use this for my music production! It would be so nice to not have cords running everywhere. These are a great idea. 

  3. Branden Wilson says:

    Tweeted about this too so my producer friends know about this :)

  4. This would be a great way to simplify my office

  5. Elizabeth says:

    Can you provide the link to Gear Diary’s facebook page? I’ve been searching for it on FB, but I can’t find it. Thanks in advance.

  6. bikeohio says:

    Would love to have this to stream music from my iOS devices to my Logitech Speakers.

  7. Erin524 says:

    I’d like one of these, I could use this upstairs on my parents computer so they can listen to their music. It’d be a nice gift for them.

  8. Andreas says:

    I just picked up some new bookshelf speakers and I’d love to add Bluetooth capability so I can stream to them. It’d be a pretty nice setup. Thanks for the giveaway!

  9. Curtis Lu says:

    This device would be great to turn any audio device to a BT capable device.  I can use one of these for my home theater.

  10. Curtis Lu says:

    This device would be great to turn any audio device to a BT capable device.  I can use one of these for my home theater.

  11. Curtis Lu says:

    This device would be great to turn any audio device to a BT capable device.  I can use one of these for my home theater.

  12. JD Northwest says:

    This is pretty awesome. I like the idea of making my iPod separate from my stereo.

  13. Chris braden says:

    I drive 2 hours a day and need a bt player

  14. Arty says:

    One of these would be fantastic to stream to the radio in our nursery so that my wife doesn’t have to get out of the chair when feeding the baby.