To be honest, when I first saw the Creative Muvo Mini I did a double-take and decided to give this one a shot...
It looked pretty similar to something Jawbone would design, which was quite like Creative. Just take successful designs and creatively implement into their own products (quite often not very successful). But let me tell all you aspiring audiophiles out there - never judge the sound by the looks of that speaker. It may look like some “OEM Original” shit, but there’s always that 50% chance……
It’s pretty small, slim and lightweight. It almost feels like a cheap plastic remote control. But, Creative actually made this durably water and dust resistant, which means that when I’m busy getting lost somewhere in the Australian Outback, even with no more food and water I still have a working speaker! Thumbs up Creative!
This little hobbit here has a 10 hour battery life and NFC pairing. Pairing my phone with it was jiffy, practically child’s play. and the connection was pretty reliable even as sweaty secondary students jostled past me.
I played a warm sounding funk track “Have a good time” by the Brand New Heavies. It got pretty loud, impressive. The bass guitar sounded tight but the overall texture of the bass was rather thin, though the display stand there said “LOUD, STRONG BASS”. Tsktsktsk naughty naughty Creative. Anyway it was something I would expect of a speaker its size. Trumpets sounded bright and clear. Sound distorts when I maxed out the volume like a boss. But sonce this is a tiny speaker, I close one eye. Overall clarity is great so far. Ready for Round 2 now.
I put on “Baby It’s Cold Outside” from the ISSE 2013 album, which is my benchmark for gauging stereo spaciousness, mids and highs. In this song, a guy is trying to convince this girl to stay in his house tonight “Cause’ it’s cold outside and there’s no cab. Grab taxi also no use”. (Really, go look it up!)
This is where the speaker fell flat. Everything was clear but both the male and female vocalist sounded too shrill and grainy for my liking. The music didn’t sound spacious at all, it felt like the male and female singers were singing out of a tiny box (which they are, but that’s not the point!) As a result, the song sounded less engaging than usual.
It wouldn’t be fair to expect much stereo separation from such a tiny speaker but there are compact speakers out there that provide far better spaciousness, but for more money. At $99, with weather resistant construction, tiny size and clear loud sound, it’s hard to complain. Got 4 colours some more, in black, white, red or blue.
Overall, I give an LP rating of “Buy, but I would rather you spend more money on a better performing speaker”. I don’t give number ratings cause' I hate maths.