If you're looking for a portable speaker with plenty of bass, the S$1,360 Devialet Mania from the French audio manufacturer will satisfy this need. However it's a tad heavy at 2.3kg to be carrying it to the park. But bringing it from room to room for when you need a musical boost? That's perfectly fine, in my opinion.
- Comes in grey, black, or gold
- 4x 25W aluminium full-range drivers and 2x 38W woofers, max 95dB at 1 metre
- 3,200mAh battery, USB-C PD
While expensive, the Mania feels worth the price. It very much looks, and feels premium. This kettlebell-shaped 360-degree stereo speaker comes wrapped in fabric. Similarly to a kettlebell, it has a small carry handle at the top, with the power, volume, play, and battery status buttons located at the sides. It strangely reminds of Wheatley from the Portal games. The speaker also comes with microphones so you can use it with the Alexa voice assistant — and only that — as well as allow for real-time room calibration. The built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth allow you to connect with your phone, or use AirPlay to play music. Sadly, there's no Cast support. You can also connect apps such as Spotify and Deezer to play directly from the speaker.
A room calibration helps the speaker adapt the sound output to the surrounding space, and it seems to work pretty well. No matter where I placed the speaker, the sound remained consistent. When placed against a wall, the speaker would lower the output on one side to match the output. It's actually pretty clever. If you move the speaker, the sound would also adjust as well. Do note that you have to leave the microphones on (even if you don't use or have Alexa), otherwise this feature won't work.
Devialet's known for its speakers, and the Mania is no exception. There's a huge emphasis on the bass, which comes out as very strong. The mids and trebles are also clearly distinct. It does feel at times that the bass may get overwhelming, but it is well controlled. On tracks like Jessi's What Type of X, Jessi's vocals came out clearly despite the heavy bass track. Thankfully, you can adjust the EQ via the Devialet app to your own preferences. The app also has a preset for more vocal clarity if you're unsure what to adjust. There's no doubt in my mind that the speakers will easily fill up rooms — at max volume, it can be crazy loud, but there's no distortion at all.
Battery life is rated at 10 hours by Devialet, and our test at 50% volume has it drop by 13% in an hour of use. This works out to around 7 hours of runtime. Retailing at S$1,360, the Devialet Mania is expensive, but worthy of the price tag. You can also get a S$129 dock to keep it charged while in use (or use a USB-C cable). There's a more expensive Gold version that goes for S$1,760 which comes with the dock bundled. Get it from Devialet or Lazada.
Note: Review unit provided by Devialet.
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