There are no shortage of bluetooth speakers to choose from. Really, there are so many you’re never going to be able to truly compare them all. Luckily there are people out there willing to take on that burden *waves*. Beacon Audio sent us over their new Blazar cube shaped bluetooth speaker to give it a rundown and see how it stacks up. Let’s get to it.
Design & Features
If looks are important to you, the Blazar will probably please you. It’s made out of aluminum and therefore, has a nice, weighty feel to it. The aluminum (naturally) makes it sleek and easy on the eyes as well.
Up top you’ll find your volume +/- and previous/next buttons as well as power button in the center of it all. Around the back an in and out audio ports flank the left and right sides respectively (for direct connection to devices or more speakers) as well as a “share” button, power switch and microUSB charging port stuffed in between.
Beacon’s claim to fame with the Blazar is the 2 + 1 arrangement: 2 50mm drivers and a 60mm passive radiator for the subwoofer functionality as well as the ability to pair together a second Blazar unit to get a fuller, more detailed sound. Bluetooth 2.1 EDR is the name of the game and battery life is rated at 10-12 hours. Frequency response is listed as the standard 20Hz-20KHz.
Usage & Thoughts
The 10-12 hours is definitely something we could routinely hit provided we didn’t keep the volume blasting at 100%, which is quite loud if you’re sitting in the same room with it. We also had no issues with the claimed ~30-40′ range one can venture from the Blazar before the connection drops. That said, if you do have it in the upper ~80% of the volume range, expect to get ~5-6 hours out of it before it peters out.
Sonically speaking, we were more than pleased with how loud the Blazar got. Granted, we’re talking about a $149.99 speaker here, so it’s not exactly cheap. That said, the size can be deceiving. In a 15′ x 30′ room, the Blazar was definitely loud enough to be way too loud to hold a normal conversation. Perhaps more important than raw loudness, though, is the fact that the Blazar exhibited absolutely zero distortion at max volume, even after hours of playing at max volume. If we were to try and find one fault with it in terms of audio quality, we’d probably go with the mid range and upper range of lower frequencies being a bit strong at times. So much so that (again, at higher volumes) details in the upper ranges get lost. For dance/hip-hop/rap/bass heavy music, this isn’t such a big deal. If you listen to jazz, metal or any other type of music with a lot of stuff going on in those upper ranges, it might be something to think about.
The $149.99 means the Blazar isn’t exactly an end cap impulse buy at Best Buy during Black Friday. You’ve got to actively be seeking out something better than that garbage. And if you happen to stumble on the Blazar, we think the good audio quality, ability to get pretty loud given its size and sleek design worthy of consideration.
Available in Beacon Blue, Frenzy Red, Ashen Black or Siberian White for $149.99 – Beacon Audio – Blazar