Review: Samsung Wireless Audio Portable Speaker

Looking a bit like an oversized hip flask, Samsung’s Wireless Audio Portable speaker has the cool factor in the design stakes, and would sit comfortably in any modern home – or retro one for that matter.

By Mike Wheeler

 

Looking a bit like an oversized hip flask, Samsung’s Wireless Audio Portable speaker has the cool factor in the design stakes, and would sit comfortably in any modern home – or retro one for that matter.

 

Most obvious thing out of the box is how heavy it is, which suggests that the steel casing is the real deal and not just for show. It is quite big, and what we really, really, really like (have we said enough reallys?) are the buttons that look like they should be on the face of the Rosetta Stone, or some other hieroglyphic widget out of the Da Vinci Code. It also comes with a brown, wrap around magnetic cover to protect the face of the device.

 

All this is nice and fluffy and leads to a great first impression, but the only thing that truly matters about the speaker is its sound. So what was it like?

 

Being a wireless device you can either connect via bluetooth or NFC – I did the latter. It was just a case of pressing the body of my Samsung Galaxy S4 to the speaker and hitting ‘OK’ on the phone when the screen prompt came up, and you’re away laughing.

 

Overall it is pretty good. You will have trouble at the high end with slight distortion, which is exacerbated if you leave the brown cover on (which is a pity because it adds to its allure). It pumps out 20Watts, which, for its size, is a little low, but the actual quality of the sound is above average.

 

If you are anally retentive and like the curves to be perfect, you can depress the volume button so it sits flush with the rest of the stainless-steel unit, while there is also a support on the back that allows the speaker to sit horizontally if you so wish.

 

One minor bugbear is the name of the device. It may seem strange to cry about this but when it's official name is the "Wireless Audio-Portable" (note, it doesn't even call itself a speaker), we're wondering how the folk at Samsung are going to market it so it stands out from the crowd, because it certainly deserves to.

 

Stylistically this is one of the best speakers out there, and as far as sound output goes, meets the grade. We think this would be great for the indoors or an outdoor barbecue area where you’d like a little background music.

 

Pros: Fantastic form factor, solid, reasonable sound
Cons: Slight distortion if too loud; marketing all wrong

 

RRP
$299

 

4.2 Shacks Out Of 5

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