Top critical review
33 people found this helpful
A good speaker but outscored by the competition
on 17 October 2012
This is a chunky, very heavy (620g) and well made Bluetooth speaker. Design features included a neat integrated 3.5mm jack lead stored in the base of the unit and three large control buttons - volume up; volume down; battery status/hands free - well placed on top of the speaker. The Bluetooth connected seamlessly with my iPod and laptop and the range is good around the house although limited outside (but this is a flaw of Bluetooth technology in general, not the speaker).
The sound is good and it will fill a room, but the bass relies too much on bass boost support and on bass heavy songs it just sounds a little too forced. The battery lasts for approximately 9 hours with the volume at 75% and it takes about 2 hours to fully charge it.
Ultimately though I have to compare this speaker with the Braven 650 Bluetooth Speaker (the price of it goes up and down but at the time of writing it costs the same as the Jabra) which outscores it in a number of areas. The Braven is more compact and nowhere near as heavy (370g) and in the two most important areas when considering a portable speaker - sound quality and battery life - the Braven beats this hands down. It delivers the same volume of sound but it handles bass much better - it sounds natural and unforced - and it has a battery that lasts 16-17 hours. Additionally, the volume buttons allow you to skip between tracks and you can also charge a mobile phone from it, features that the Solemate does NOT have.
Whilst this is a decent speaker, there is a better speaker in the same price range (at the time of writing) available and for that reason alone 3½ stars is an appropriate rating.