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Jabra Solmate: Looks small,sounds big

I have always had a soft corner for music and after a tiresome day,listening to ‘my kind of music’—songs by the Swedish pop group ABBA,Richard Marx,Air Supply and Backstreet Boys,or even ghazals by Jagjit Singh,Begum Akhtar,Farida Khanum,among others – elevates the mood and spikes my energy levels.

Written by Sudhir Chowdhary | Published: April 4, 2013 5:02 pm

Party on the beach or dance in the kitchen,this portable speaker delivers great sound

I have always had a soft corner for music and after a tiresome day,listening to ‘my kind of music’—songs by the Swedish pop group ABBA,Richard Marx,Air Supply and Backstreet Boys,or even ghazals by Jagjit Singh,Begum Akhtar,Farida Khanum,among others – elevates the mood and spikes my energy levels. Naturally,music devices are dear to me and whenever I pick up a gadgetlaptop,tablet or a mobile phone—for a review,one of the first things I do is to check its music-playing capability.

Jabra is the brand of GN Netcom,a subsidiary of GN Store Nord A/S (GN)—listed on Nasdaq. The company’s consumer and business divisions produce corded and wireless headsets,plus mobile and in-office speakerphones that empower individuals and businesses through increased freedom of movement,comfort and functionality.

Recently,the firm sent across its Solemate Bluetooth speaker for a product review. As the family was getting ready for its annual ‘retreat to Goa’ vacation,I decided to take the Solemate along. After all,it would be fun to stream music from the mobile phone on a beach or during our long scooter rides on secluded sea-facing roads in the coastal city.

Soon on arrival,I unpacked the box containing the portable speaker,USB cable,sound bag,3.5 mm audio cable,AC charger and a quick start guide. The R10,990-a-piece speaker comes with a durable sound bag for added outdoor protection; something which really came handy whenever I took the device outside.

My first thoughts on the Solemate: For such a small,portable Bluetooth speaker,the Jabra speaker sounds great and plays impressively loud without distorting. The device looks small but sounds big and you get all your entertainment in amazing,crystal-clear sound. It is designed for simplicity with its good grip on a tabletop. Being lightweight and portable,you really can take your Solemate anywhere; the durable design is dust and splash resistant.

The Solemate doesn’t stop at music. Connect to your phone and you’ve got your own personal speakerphone. This means that you can take your video chats to the next level by using Solemate with Skype,Google Talk and other video chat services.

Let us talk about music,movies and games. You can connect the Solemate to your smartphone,MP3 player,tablet,laptop or anything that can play music using Bluetooth,a 3.5 mm audio cable or USB cable. Bluetooth 3.0 technology works up to 10 metres away so you can DJ the party from across the room.

In my case,I connected the Jabra speaker to an Apple iPod via the audio cable and the sound quality was impressive. It provides strong,deep bass from an integrated subwoofer and rich acoustics from dual tweeters. There is wireless music streaming via Bluetooth too.

For the uninitiated,Bluetooth is a short range wireless communication technology that is both stable and energy efficient. The technology allows for easy wireless connection to other Bluetooth devices,so you can play your favourite music from any smartphone,tablet or laptop,including the iPod or iPhone with a Bluetooth-enabled speaker.

I had no trouble pairing my better half’s iPhone 4S with the speaker. Here again,the wireless connection was pretty stable. I would like to mention that the Solemate doesn’t come with a remote. That’s because you would not require one since you can control the volume from your device itself. There is also a volume switch on top of the speaker.

As far as battery and power is concerned,there is talk time of upto 10 hours. Talk time is the maximum time you can talk before a device runs out of power.

The device permits music streaming time of an impressive 10 hours; this is the maximum time you can stream music before it runs out of power. Of course,there is rapid USB charging and a battery status indicator reveals the remaining battery time.

All in all,if you are obsessed with sound then you can unleash the full sound potential of all your media devices with this Jabra innovation. In my view,the Solemate is definitely on top of the portable Bluetooth speaker category. Highly recommended!

SPeCS

* Dimensions: 172 x 64 x 70 mm (L x W x H)

* 3 front facing speakers

* Connection via Bluetooth,3.5 mm audio cable and USB cable

* Speakerphone capability

* Voice guidance* Upto 8 hours wireless music time Built-in rechargeable lithium ion battery* Weight: 610 grams

Estimated street price: Rs.10,990

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