Review: BlueAnt M1 Bluetooth Speakers
Cost: $159.99 in the store
The BlueAnt M1 Bluetooth Speakers are hands down awesomeness, from first use, to about three weeks now–still awesome. The only thing not so awesome is the cost but if you have the money you cannot go wrong. Originally I did not see the purpose of a Bluetooth speaker set but I have learned the error of my ways… 🙂
So let’s start from the top…the unboxing. The M1 is pretty minimalistic. The box come with the speaker (obvious), a carry case, a slim charger and an audio cable.
Setup: The M1, like almost anything, has to be charged straight out of the box. Because the M1 is built for both indoor use and travel, the charger is fairly small and light enough to be carried around. The charging takes an abnormally long time. It took about 3-5 hours to get to a full charge. There are two LEDs on the back (see below) so you can see when it’s charging and when the battery is full. But, once it is fully charged it can play music for up to 10 hours. Now I know that these numbers never really hold up, but I have been using the M1 sporadically for about 3 weeks now–still on its first charge. Pretty impressive.
The Bluetooth pairing is simple and straightforward, nothing really new…why change something that works right?
Casing: The M1 is square shaped on its side, but has a leveled off corner. The leveled off corner allows the M1 to sit on a flat surface with the speakers pointed more directly at the listener. By utilizing the direction of the speaker, you can get more audio power with less battery drain.
Now let’s get to the good stuff…
Sound Quality: If you have read any of my previous review of Bluetooth headphones, you will know that I am a sucker for bass. I tested this speaker for three audio levels. With the default settings on the M1 I was able to get good sound quality for the mid-range audio level (vocals) and the high-tones (like the tinging of the symbols on the drums). Then I decided to test the Bass, using the Bass button by the volume wheel. The built in subwoofer was awesome, the sound was so deep you could feel it, and all from this little Bluetooth speaker! Rating the sound quality alone, I would give the speaker a 10 out of 10.
Features: Around the volume wheel there are a bunch of control buttons to control the music and sound from the speaker itself. You can play/pause, forward, rewind, power and bass. If you don’t want to connect via Bluetooth A2DP, you can connect manually (see the back) using the included audio cable. I didn’t hear any real sound difference when using the Bluetooth connection of the manual audio cord connection (some people claim a loss of audio quality when transmitting over the air using Bluetooth).
Lastly, the M1 is billed as a travel speaker, so it comes with a pretty hardcore travel case. The case is made up of a hard fabric and closes using Velcro. The front of the case has a hard foam insert with a cutout for the volume knob. When closed, the speaker is virtually protected from dirt, sand, grass and light rain. The case is designed so that the speaker can be played from within the case when opened. In order for the subwoofer to work and to get decent bass.
Overall here is the rundown…
Cons: Takes a long time to charge.
Pros: When it says the battery lasts up to 10 hours, it literally does. When it comes to sound quality (the reason you are buying it), the sound quality is just great. Lastly, the travel case is rough and hardcore, making you feel comfortable taking out a nice speaker to the park, beach or poolside.