adgroup

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Divoom Onbeat 500 Review



As I went on another quest for the perfect budget-friendly bluetooth speakers, I came upon a familiar brand to me, yet relatively unknown to most. I reviewed the Divoom Bluetune-Pop about a year ago and I was impressed with it. I should point out that I searched high and low before ending up with the OnBeat-500. Let’s list down the specs:

Specs:
                  
- Powerful sound from 2.1 design and a proprietary passive bass radiator 
-Tap-to-pair NFC technology for easy and instant Bluetooth connection 
- Built-in powerful speakerphone,makes and takes call from your computer, tablet or  mobile 
- Rechargeable Li-ion battery for 8 hours playback 

Dimensions:
225L x 75W x 105H mm
Driver size:
2'' x 2
Output power:
13 W
Signal to noise ratio:
≥75dB
Battery Capacity:
3000 mAh
Battery Voltage:
3.7 V
Battery Charge Time:
4 hours
Wireless Range:
Up to 10 meters/33 feet
Bluetooth compliant:
V4.0
Bluetooth profile support:
A2DP Stereo
Talk Time:
Up to 8 hours
Microphone sensitivity:
-36 db

Price Php 3,500 (lazada.com) $90 (Amazon)

Design and Sound Quality

Like a kid, I still get excited over nicely wrapped packages. The quality of the box is worth mentioning because it has unique magnetic flaps that hold it together.  It gives the impression that it holds a very high quality product.  In terms of design, it does not disappoint. It looks very similar to the Jawbone Big Jambox, which is a good thing. Build quality is flawless, despite the plastic finish. It’s deceptively heavy with a solid and hefty feel. 

I tried out a few other popular speakers in the market like the JBL Charge, Supertooth Disco2, Braven 600, Sony SRSBTX500 and the Bose Soundlink Mini. I almost dismissed the OnBeat 500 altogether as I was convinced getting a known brand was the way to go. Boy was I wrong! I was really shocked that it sounds as good and perhaps even better than any of them with only the Bose Soundlink Mini sounding marginally better. I’ll even go out on a limb and say that the Bose is almost three times the price but it definitely doesn’t sound three times better. Sound quality is very subjective but to my ears, it has very solid base with clear mids and highs. You can play it at maximum volume with hardly any distortion. This is more than I can say for the others I tested. It also has more features than almost anything in its price range like Aptx support for better sound quality and NFC pairing.



from Divoom website


2.1 Speakers


Onbeat 500 vs Logitech Mini Boombox vs Bluetune Pop


Verdict

While I may be all praises for this product, there are a few minor drawbacks like the lack of a USB charger (you only get a cable) and the amateur looking user manual that has such small print and looks like a photocopy that was just stapled together. This is an outstanding Bluetooth speaker for the price. Sure, you can find something better but you will need to spend more than $200. If you’re looking for a good set of Bluetooth speakers and you’re not brand conscious, then you should definitely try out the Divoom Onbeat 500. Just like me, you’ll be pleasantly surprised, if not shocked.

The Good:

- Price
- Outstanding Sound Quality
- Aptx and NFC
- Bluetooth 4.0
- Packaging

The Bad:

- No included charger (just USB cable)
- User manual
- On sale now so perhaps a new model will be out soon

- Fingerprint magnet