Ok, you’ve heard about the Braven 625 and the Braven 650 in this here website already. Let’s take some time out to give the entry-level bluetooth speaker brethren of the Braven Six Series the spotlight this time, shall we?
The lightest of the brood
First off, the Braven 600 is the most affordable of the set of speakers, mainly because of its somewhat barer specs: of all three models (the others being the aforementioned Braven 625 and the Braven 650), it’s got the lowest-rated power, a modest 3.7v, 1400 mAh battery, which is not to say it’s the lousiest of the three, just the least powered. It can run on the battery for at least 12 hours, as opposed to the 20 hours of the other models. It’s basically a small-sized, simple rectangular box with small, simple controls and a modest number of features.
But other than these limitations, the Braven 600 is just as good as its brothers.
Like an Apple product
It comes in a bare, anodized aluminum case in red or a nondescript natural-colored shade, and it doesn’t have the rubberized and ruggedized coating the other models have. It’s got a simple, spartan look, with the controls on either end of unit, and comes with the requisite cables and charger, and an equally simple carrying bag. There is a panel-wide grill on the front and the back, with the simple Braven logo on one side telling you which is the front of the unit. It comes out of the box with an expensive, well-made vibe, not unlike an Apple product.
It’s got the same excellent external bluetooth speaker capacity, sounding great and strong enough to fill a room with sound, with unparalleled brilliance and fidelity unheard of with other speaker brands in its class. In fact, Braven stands out because of its attention to speaker dynamics and design, and their speakers surpass others in its range by leaps and bounds. It handles the newer Bluetooth 3.0 spec, which has a better connection and significantly lower-powered, but is still backward-compatible.
Surprisingly good, full sound
There are a couple of 3-watt speakers situated on the inside of the case (you can’t ask for too much stereo separation as this is a single unit speaker, but it does a good job if you’re within a close proximity), and there are two backward-firing passive bass speakers situated in the rear. It does a great job of connection via bluetooth: all you need do is press the bluetooth button on one side of the unit and it connects to your device without fuss or fanfare, announcing the connection via a nice electronic tone.
The connection is stable within the prescribed 33 feet. (Although I notice that it has the occasional dropouts in signal, one of the downsides of bluetooth connections.) You can bring the speaker around and wander within the signal radius without much drop in quality. The speaker produces great, punchy sound, and surprisingly, good bass.
It’s also a speakerphone…
There is also a speakerphone function in the Braven 600, which is great for taking and making calls on your phone, and the speaker pauses the sound to let you take the calls. Voice transmission is clear, if a little muted (I find that you have to raise your voice just a little to be heard clearly). It was hard to tell where the actual microphone was on the unit, but upon close inspection I found it low on the right side of the front, on the third hole from the bottom on the lower right edge of the front grill.
…and a charger
There is also a USB port on the left side of the speaker that allows you to charge your cellphone or other device in a pinch, for those times when power sources are hard to come by. Granted, it can’t fully charge your device, and the speaker time is drastically reduced when you use it that way, but it’s great when your phone or tablet is running out of power and you don’t have much choice in the matter.
Can connect to other non-Bluetooth devices
There is a 3.5mm Audio In port and cable that allows you to connect virtually any device to the speaker without the benefit of bluetooth, and there is also a 3.5mm Audio Out port that allows you to connect another set of speakers to it, or another Braven set to supplement your audio (although you can’t make it output the audio in left or right stereo mode, just supplement it).
Better if connected to a power source
If you connect the speaker to a power input, such as the included power adaptor, or a computer via the microUSB port, you’ll find the Braven 600 to be a different animal entirely, with much louder output, and seemingly (to me at least) clearer and cleaner sound. The included carrying bag is unfortunately too small to include the charger and cables, but is more than enough for the speaker itself.
It’s a wonderful, compact bluetooth speaker to carry around with you, and while it doesn’t have as much power as the 625 and 650 models, the Braven 600 is still a great way to enjoy excellent audio from your bluetooth-enabled devices.
PRICE: Php 6,450
AVAILABILITY: Digital Hub and Digital Walker branches, Beyond The Box stores
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