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Bluedio AS-BT Bluetooth Speaker Review

Bluedio make some really excellent devices which offer the same features and facilities that you would find on the more expensive branded products. Perhaps more importantly they also produce since excellent sounding equipment as well. Bluedio sent the Bluedio AS-BT Bluetooth speaker for review free of charge for an honest review.

The speaker is quite small - not small enough to for in your pocket but certainly small enough to for in a bag or backpack without any problems. It's not too heavy but does have a nice skid feeling to it and doesn't rattle when you shake it. The device is rechargeable and I have yet to drain the battery so i cannot comment yet on battery life. Charging takes a couple of hours normally. The controls are all on the top and have a nice positive click to them. One thing I noticed is that it takes a little longer to power the unit up than conventional Bluetooth headphones - although this isn't a bad thing because you don't want the thing powering up accidentally whilst it's in your bag. There's a conventional micro USB power port on the back along with a standard jack for using wired devices for music playback. The only thing that's missing is an NFC connection spot although I personally think that's little more than a gimmick for most of the time.

The speaker features two really cool looking solid grilles front and back. The rear grille covers the two passive radiators which help provide a degree of additional bass. The front grille covers two small speakers which you can see quite clearly when you get the light just right on it. There's some weird patterning style around all the outside of the speaker which I personally don't particularly like but it doesn't have any effect whatsoever on the sound quality or functionality of the unit so i really don't give a monkey's about it.

The packaging is absolutely first class - in think it's fair to say that Sony and other top manufacturers on these type of devices could definitely take a leaf out of Bluedio's book when it comes to presentation of product. The speaker comes supplied with a really nice soft carrying sleeve which features a neat Velcro pocket for carrying a USB lead and connection cable. Nice touch there and a genuinely useful accessory.

The device uses the latest incarnation on Bluetooth and also offers aptx for compatible devices which is a really nice touch but perhaps overkill on a device like this. The Bluetooth range is very impressive and I didn't experience any dropouts during my listening tests with the unit. All in all a really nice solid wireless performance. Voice prompts tell you power status along with pairing and other relevant information. The voice is a little bit louder than I would have liked but it's not really a problem.

Sound Quality

With a speaker this size, it’s fair to say that it’s not going to be a bass monster - and it’s not. In fact I was rather impressed with the bass detail. You can hear the notes clearly but it’s not overblown. The passive radiators on the back may benefit from close placement to a wall but the unit is designed to be free-standing. The unit has a reasonable amount of volume and can go quite loud without distortion. The treble can be somewhat ‘tizzy’ when driven loud but this does help make the speaker sound more detailed as well.

The volume control only has a limited number of ‘steps’ so you may want to make fine adjustments using your playback device instead. Although the unit can be used to make hands-free calls, I didn’t get the chance to try this feature out (I’m Billy No-Mates and no-one ever calls me). Powering the unit on requires a long press on the PLAY/PAUSE button. Once active and connected the controls respond quickly and positively but note that it seems to take a very long press on the PLAY/PAUSE key to switch off the unit. Theoretically I could keep the unit on standby all the time but I don’t shower so often that I could justify the power drain. With this in mind I can’t yet comment on battery life except to say that I have had the unit for a couple of weeks now and I’ve only charged it up once.

The 3D function does make a profound change to the sound - when activated you get the impression that you’re listening to a larger speaker system so in this respect it’s doing its job but the sound does lose some detail in this mode. The 3D mode does help to tame the bright treble though so that’s not a bad thing but there’s also a slight ‘hollowness’ to the music which is not present when the 3D function is not active.

Truth be told, I rarely get the chance to listen to music through speakers these days - especially loud music. I tend to use headphones for most of my listening because I can listen loud and I like the sound signature that headphones provide. At the moment I’m using the AS-BT speaker in the bathroom for listening to music whilst showering. Although Bluedio make no mention of any water resistance with this product, I don’t think that this will be a problem. In a way, this is a terrible waste of resource because this speaker deserves more than that.

Conclusion

It’s a really nice product. Definitely worth the money and can compete comfortably with the big boys like Bose and Sony but at a fraction of the price. The sound quality is very good and the build quality is first class. The speaker offers a good solid bluetooth connection (I wish some of the bluetooth earbuds I have offered the same solid connection) and the battery appears to last forever. I’m personally not keen on the ‘wordy map of the world’ styling but apart from that I think the unit looks and feels AND SOUNDS like a quality unit.

I feel I can confidently recommend this Bluetooth speaker to anyone looking for one in this price range. Apart from the rather gaudy graphics which I personality don't really like, it's a first class product which delivers a talky nice sound quality and excellent portability. Well done Bluedio - keep up the good work.

Bluedio AS-BT Amazon Product Page
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Bluedio-AS-BT-Wireless-Bluetooth-Speakers/dp/B01G70HXW4/ref=sr_1_51?ie=UTF8&qid=1471085118&sr=8-51&keywords=bluedio

Bluedio Amazon Storefront
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Bluedio/b/ref=bl_dp_s_web_3969834031?ie=UTF8&node=3969834031&field-lbr_brands_browse-bin=Bluedio