Google Home Max Has Line-In Latency Issues (EXCLUSIVE)

Google has tapped Diplo for an ad for its Google Home Max smart speaker, but chances are that DJs won’t actually have a whole lot of fun with the device in their line of work. A notable latency issue that makes it impossible to use the Home Max as a studio monitor, Variety recently discovered. Regular home listening will not be affected by the issue, which has been acknowledged by Google.

The Google Home Max sets itself apart from other smart speakers by featuring an Aux, or line-in port, making it possible to connect a turntable, tape deck or other sources of music. However, any music piped in through that port is being played with a slight delay. That’s not an issue if you only mean to play the music on your Google Home Max — your favorite song is still the same song, even if played with a delay of a couple of milliseconds.

But DJs often use their mixer to preview the next song to play, matching it to the rhythm of what’s currently playing over the speakers. Throw in a bit of extra latency, and you won’t be able to match those beats at all.

A Google spokesperson confirmed the issue when contacted by Variety last week, but also pointed out that this won’t affect the synchronization between two Home Max speakers. “We’re aware of a slight delay with aux-in,” that spokesperson said via email. “The delay is in regards to how long it takes for the music to start playing, and does not affect synchronization of sound across home devices – which is near perfect for most setups.”

It’s worth noting that the device doesn’t currently allow users to synchronize music piped in via aux-in across your home. Google previously told Variety that it plans to add the ability to cast line-in audio to multi-room groups later in 2018.

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