The market is crowded with Bluetooth speakers. Every time you turn around, there is someone selling another Bluetooth speaker. They are an excellent iOS device accessory and I recommend having at least one. Of course, they run the full range of prices and I have had my hands on cheap and expensive several hundred dollar models.
When choosing a speaker, it is important to decide what is most important to you. Do you need one small enough to throw in your bag or do you prefer a home theater style option that can shake the walls with crisp and booming sound? Divoom is on the lower end of the Bluetooth spectrum. Providing small packaged, portable Bluetooth speakers with a rugged edge is the niche market for the Texas based company, which sent them over for review.
The Voombox-ongo is the larger of our two conversation pieces. With a bike mount included, the Ongo is a ruggedized portable speaker with water resistance for the unpredictable weather. Eight hours of playback will keep tunes churning throughout a full workday and 7W of output means it can fill a room with sound. Assisting with the playback time is Bluetooth 4.0 or Bluetooth Low Energy generation, which is specifically designed to more efficiently handle power consumption.
In the box you will also find a USB to mini charging cable, auxiliary 3.5mm audio cable, and the aforementioned bike mount. The bike mount is decent enough, but I don’t think I would trust it with my $800 iPhone. It is fine for a ruggedized speaker.
The volume buttons will control the track progress forward/back as well as volume. Additionally, speakerphone functionality is built into the control deck. Pairing is simple and a small indicator light with audio cues indicate connectivity status.
The Airbeat-10 comes packaged with a 3.5mm auxiliary cable, USB to mini charging cable, and suction cup and bike mounts. I like the suction cup attachment in particular. While writing the review, I tested it out in the shower. It is a perfect way to listen during your morning routine, but I cannot tell much difference in the subwoofer effect while attached to a flat surface.
A tiny package, this little guy is quite spunky. Stepping aside from its larger brother, I would argue the Airbeat-1o does a better job at replicating music without distortion. Playback time is rated at up to 6 hours and using Bluetooth 3.0 instead of BLE may lead to the lower rating.
Like the Ongo, the Airbeat-10 also utilizes Bluetooth control buttons. Volume buttons also change tracks and they have the ability to control speakerphone actions. An onboard LED displays and audio cues signal Bluetooth connectivity.
Both speakers struggled with the speaker/headphone playlist suggested by the Jam Audio blog. Excelling at neither highs, mids, or lows, it was mediocre and had minor distortion when played at loud volumes. Sound is clear and loud at moderately loud levels, but this is no HiFi system. Consequently, the speakers are great for simple grab-and-go situations. As I mentioned in the introduction: when choosing a speaker, it is important to determine what one is seeking.
If you are looking for loud, reasonable sound, in a rugged weather resistant housing, trying out these Divoom speakers may fit the bill. If you are looking for an in-home HiFi speaker set that is perfectly balanced, keep moving. But, as advertised, why not toss one in the shower for your morning routine or strap one to your bike.
The Voombox-ongo is currently $59 on sale from $80 via Amazon in orange, blue, black, green and red. At $80, this speaker is severely over priced. With the current discount, it is more reasonable. At $29.90, down from $50, the Airbeat-10 is clearly the most cost effective choice in red, white, and black. I believe $30 is appropriate in this case. It is hard to find a smaller package speaker that is weather resistant and offers the sound level of the Airbeat-10. Honestly, the Airbeat-10 is quite a good little speaker.