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EasyAcc DP100 Ultra Portable Bluetooth 4.0 Speaker (Review)

March 9, 2016 Comments off

EasyAcc DP100 Ultra Portable Bluetooth SpeakerEasyAcc DP100 Ultra Portable Bluetooth 4.0 Speaker
EasyAcc
Amazon $21.99 (Prime)

The EasyAcc DP100 Bluetooth 4.0 Portable Speaker (DP100) is a small (2.6 x 2.6 x 3.8 inches), coffee cup-sized speaker that is one cool sound machine. The DP100 sports a full 4 Watt 45mm driver that can turn any room into a fully immersed music experience. But please don’t damage your hearing or disturb your neighbors with this speaker. Now this speaker won’t vibrate the car next to you at a traffic light, but it does put out some great volume. And its small size means that it’s ultraportable and easy to carry with you on camping trips, day trips, picnics, and on the days when you can have lunch outside at work.

Features:

  • MicroUSB charging
  • 2,200 mAh capacity
  • Up to 25 hours of continuous play time
  • 10.6 ounces
  • Phone answering
  • 4 Watts
  • 30m/100ft unobstructed connectivity distance.

The DP100 pairs in seconds as you can see on the video, so no matter where you are or who you’re with, someone can connect to the speaker for shared play. You can control volume and all music controls via the soft press buttons on top of the unit. You can also control the speaker from your phone.

At home or in an office, the Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity limitation might be the standard 10m/30ft, but outside where there are no walls or metal frames, you can be separated by 30m/100ft. The cool thing is that you can still hear the speaker at that distance.

EasyAcc makes some great products and the DP100 is no exception. Look for other EasyAcc product reviews here on The Frugal Networker site. Every product from EasyAcc is well made, performs very well, and is priced perfectly.

Why it’s Frugal: The DP100 is frugal because it is a lot of product for a little money. Its solid construction, long battery life, and big sound means that you can keep this little gem for years of enjoyment and that’s frugal.

Check out the video for a good review of what’s in the box, a demonstration of the speedy Bluetooth connectivity, and a good sound sample. I really like the DP100, but did find that I have trouble with the controls. It’s possible that I just haven’t taken the time to learn the controls, but I haven’t really needed to use them either, so it’s a tradeoff. Read the included documentation to find out how to use the device and you’ll be happy. The DP100 is a great little speaker at a great price and it makes a great gift and a nice stocking stuffer.

Rating: 9/10

Recommendation: Buy it. It’s good frugal fun.

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Checking Out the CHIC BUDS Porta Party Bluetooth Speakers (Review)

May 16, 2014 1 comment

CHIC BUDS Porta Party Bluetooth SpeakerPorta Party Bluetooth Speakers (Katie)
CHIC BUDS, A Division of FxA
$49.99/$41.94 Amazon (Prime)

I’ve reviewed several Bluetooth speakers on this blog but none as fun or as unique as the Porta Party Bluetooth Speakers by CHIC BUDS. But, I’m a little confused by the company name. On the web site, I’ve seen it as chicBuds and CHIC BUDS, but on the package it’s CHIC BUDS and CH!C BUDS. So, for the purposes of this review, I’m going to use CHIC BUDS because I’ve seen it on the packaging and on the web site that way. It actually doesn’t matter how you spell it, though, because the Porta Party (And, it’s Porta PARTY, not POTTY) is an awesome little speaker with a HUGE sound.

I don’t usually use all caps to describe something but since I’m going with the all caps company name, why not just go all the way. Seriously, this small jar-sized speaker packs a big sound. When I first turned it on, I figured that it would be a small, tinny sound because of the diminutive stature. I was wrong. Really wrong.

There’s no tinny sound from this little pocket-sized bomb. The trebles are loud and clear and the bass is body thumpingly deep. If I were to sum up the sound quality and volume into a single word, it would be, “Impressive.”

If sound alone weren’t enough to sell you on the Porta Party speaker, check out its stats and features:

  • Standard USB/DC charging port
  • Play 30 ft. away from sound source
  • Hands-free call answering
  • Bluetooth music playing
  • Weighs just 8 ounces
  • Uses a 3.5mm audio cable (included)
  • Charge lasts up to 10 hours
  • USB cable included
  • Bluetooth 3.0
  • Easy device pairing
  • 4.7 x 2.4 x 2.4 inches

In their own words:

“In 2005, the founders of CHIC BUDS recognized a need in the market for technology accessories created specifically for females, and CHIC BUDS was launched.

Today, CHIC BUDS, a division of FxA, continues to be a company of girls designing and developing fashionable, fun and functional tech accessories for all of us girls that heavily rely on technology yet still delight in embracing our own personal style. At CHIC BUDS, we embrace and celebrate individuality and creativity amongst all women and girls which drives us to bring all the hard-working women and girls around the world more fun choices when it comes to their technology accessories. Our product line up not only solves the modern girl’s tech style challenges but also delivers the function we all require.”

So, I know that these speakers are “created specifically for females,” but guys can buy them too and just use them ironically. To me, the Porta Party speakers are kind of like Cosmos, you know, the drink. They’re so good and yet not really something you want your friends to see you drinking. My brother-in-law once asked my wife and me, “Have you guys ever had a Cosmo? They’re yummy!” Yeah, they’re yummy, Scott.

Sound Nerd Info:

  • Transmission distance: 10m/30ft
  • Bluetooth frequency: 2.4GHz-2.48GHz
  • Output: 3W
  • Speaker: Ø40MM, 4Ω
  • Audio bandwidth: 200Hz-20KHz
  • SNR: ≥80dB
  • Li-ion: 3.7V/500mA

Using the Porta Party speaker is very simple. Switch it to the ON position on the bottom of the speaker. Turn on Bluetooth on your device. When ChicBuds Porta Party appears in your Bluetooth device list, tap it to connect. You’re connected. Play music, make a phone call, answer a phone call, and have fun with your tiny boom box (large handle and shoulder not required).

2014-05-15 19.29.56OK, I just thought of something funny to do with your Porta Party speaker. Have a friend call you and answer it on the Porta Party by pressing the Phone button near the bottom edge of the speaker. Put the speaker in your purse. While you’re in a store, have your friend start yelling and screaming, “Let me out of here. Help! I’m trapped in this purse. Stop just looking and help me.”

That should start a party and a conversation.

Hopefully that conversation won’t end with, “You have the right to remain silent…”

One thing to note about the Porta Party speaker. To skip to the next or to the previous song, press the + or – button once. To turn up or to turn down the sound volume, press and hold the corresponding button. If you’re using the speaker as a phone, speak into the Mic located near the Phone and Volume buttons.

To charge the speaker, plug in the supplied USB cable’s small end into the speaker and the other end into your computer’s USB port. Mine charges in 2-3 hours.

My wife and daughter both love the Katie style speaker and have both expressed a desire for one. In fact, to write this review, I found the speaker on my wife’s desk and I didn’t put it there. It had been in my office in the “Review Queue” to my knowledge. I was wrong. Fortunately, it still had a charge on it and I’m currently playing it as I write this. It’s playing my “Workout” playlist on my iPhone 5.

In fact, I thought I had the sound down sufficiently but when “The Ballad of Mona Lisa” by Panic! at the Disco came on, my daughter came in and sang with it. She was supposed to be doing homework.

Why it’s Frugal: The CHIC BUDS Porta Party isn’t frugal. It’s not a frugal device. It’s a luxury device. It’s a fashion-forward accessory that’s fun and powerful enough to provide all the sound you need, but frugal it’s not. And as any woman will tell you, if it looks good (and sounds good), it doesn’t have to be frugal.

The Porta Party Bluetooth speaker is on the upper end of the price range for an electronic gadget like this. $50 is a pretty big chunk of change for this accessory. Fortunately, you can grab one for almost $10 off that MSRP by buying it from Amazon. If you’re an Amazon Prime subscriber, which I strongly recommend, you’ll save shipping costs and get it in two days.

Although I’m kind of complaining about the price tag, $50 is about average for portable Bluetooth speakers. There are some that sell for $40-ish and some sell for as much as $150. The CHIC BUDS Porta Party Bluetooth speaker is very well made and attractive. It should provide years of enjoyment and look darn good doing it.

Rating: 9/10

Recommendation: Have him buy you one or splurge on yourself. You deserve it.

Jelly Box Portable Bluetooth Speaker (Review)

April 23, 2014 Comments off

Jelly BoxJelly Box Portable Bluetooth Speaker
OrigAudio
$34.99

OrigAudio designs some of the coolest and most affordable music/sound-related thingies on the market today. If you don’t believe me, check out the website and go to Amazon and search for OrigAudio and see for yourself. Cute, fun, happy, clever are all words that come to mind when I see the brain drizzle from OrigAudio’s founders Jason Lucash and Mike Szymczak. I’m assuming that Mike’s real last name isn’t really Szymczak. My guess is that he lost at Scrabble and is paying off some drunken bet that he made with Lucash, et al.

I digress.

This is a review for the Jelly Box portable Bluetooth speaker. They sent me a black one. Clever. I’ve heard of other colors, you know. Seriously, I’m not tricked by the thought of a Blue Raspberry, Dragonfruit, or even an <yuck> Grape Jelly Box.

Anyway, I’ve reviewed other portable Bluetooth speakers on frugalnetworker.com and this one stands well with the rest of them and at a decent price point. The Jelly Box has clear, bright sound, even at the highest levels where my teenaged children like to play it. I’m glad I was working in the yard the day my daughter decided to blast My Chemical Romance and Panic! at the Disco tunes on it. Don’t get me wrong, I like those bands but at a non-earwax cleaning level, thank you. In fact, I took my daughter to a Panic! concert earlier this month and now I’m a super fan. No T-shirts or faux-hawk yet, but the year is still young and summer’s coming.

Jellybox Bluetooth Speaker features:

  • Full stereo sound with Bluetooth functionality
  • Bluetooth range up to 33 feet
  • Built in microphone and one touch call answering for phone calls
  • On-speaker play/pause and change song buttons
  • Built in TF card slot to store your music in the speaker
  • Mini USB charging slot (cord included)
  • Speaker power: 3 watts
  • S/N: ≥ 60dB
  • Frequency response: 100HZ-20KHZ
  • Battery life: 10 hours
  • Size: 4 x 2 x 1.5 inches with a weight of 0.75 lbs
  • Compatible with any device that has Bluetooth connectivity. Also included is a 3.5mm audio cord for devices that don’t have the option of Bluetooth.
  • Available in 9 different flavors (colors).

Jelly Box BackSpeaking of summer, the Jelly Box would serve you well by the pool, on the beach, on a picnic, while doing yardwork while your lazy teenagers sit and drink iced tea and watch you, on a road trip, or even just chilling in your room. You can adjust volume on the Jelly Box or on your phone. You can also skip or revert tracks, replay a track, and answer your phone using the Jelly Box’s built-in speaker.

Note: The only thing jelly-related about the Jelly Box is perhaps the jelly-related colors, although I can’t really speak to the whole color thing directly, but I think that’s probably what they were going for.

Jelly Box Color with Band LogoI really like the Jelly Box portable Bluetooth speaker. You can plug in a non-Bluetooth device into it as well. The unit also sports a TF (micro SD) card slot for storing your music. I don’t think you can play it from there, although I didn’t try, I think it’s just for convenient storage. If you get one in color, you could write your favorite artist’s name with a Sharpie on it. It would look something like the illustration to the right. This is only a theory and I have not had the opportunity to test it for myself, so YMMV.

Of course, being young entrepreneurial types, living in (you guessed it) California, they’ve got their liberal, offbeat, hipster causes that some people view as positive, as uplifting, and as what successful and happy people should do with their millions of ill-gotten gain. I only mention it in passing.

Why it’s frugal: The Jelly Box is a lot of things but frugal isn’t one of them. It’s cute. It’s fun. It’s well priced for the market. Why does something always have to be frugal to be purchase worthy? It doesn’t.

Jelly Box ButtonsThe Jelly Box connects to your Bluetooth enabled device easily and immediately. My iPhone 5 picked it right up and all I had to do was tap “Connect” on my iPhone to make the connection and listen to my Frank Sinatra and Duke Ellington hits–HA! Kidding, I listen to Flyleaf, Mazzy Star, The Cure, Coldplay, Lisa Loeb, and Gotye. Yes, I know, I have varied tastes, shut up about it already.

What more can I say about the Jelly Box? It’s portable. It’s well-made. It works. I understand that it comes in a variety of awesome colors. It plays loud. It plays soft. It plays well with others. And I’m sure that Frank Sinatra and Duke Ellington sound great on it too. So buy one for Grandpa, Grandma, and the whole gang. Anyone can afford $35. And if it keeps the likes of Lucash and what’s his name off the street, I’m good with that.

Rating: 9.372/10

Recommendation: Buy one in one of those cool colors and tell me what you think of it.

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