22nd Jan2016

‘Divoom Voombox Party’ Bluetooth Speaker Review

by Phil Wheat

divoom-voombox-party-image

Bluetooth speakers are ten-a-penny these days and there’s seemingly a new model released on a weekly basis, so it takes something special for one to stand out from the ever-increasing crowd. Thankfully the Divoom Voombox Party has a number of tricks up its sleeve and an audio quality which raises it up over and above the rest of the bluetooth speaker flotsam.

Styled very much like an Apple product – the version we had to review was a similar brushed aluminium look, reminiscent of the Macbook Pro and iMac but it also comes in black – the Divoom Voombox Party bluetooth speaker has a very rugged appearance, if a little basic, mixing metal and rubber. Whilst the design may be a tad on the basic side, it does mean that the speaker is [apparently] waterproof (IPX44-certified shock-proof and waterproof according to the press release); but don’t go submerging it in water any time soon, I’d say it’s more “splashproof” than waterproof… Whilst the waterproof capabilities may be in question, what isn’t is the strength and durability of the speaker – you could kick this about a field like a football and it would take the beating and still keep on working. It’s also a heavy beast, weighing a whopping 1150g, which adds to the ruggedness of the product.

Sticking to the clean lines “Mac-look” ethos of the Voombox Party‘s design, the speaker features only five buttons to control it’s functions: a power button, bluetooth button, call button and + and _ buttons which not only raise and lower the volume of the speaker but also work as forward and backward skip too.

We’ve had the Divoom Voombox Party in Nerdly HQ for some time now and I don’t know how we ever coped without it. The audio quality is stunning – I’m a sucker for a good base-y sound and the Voombox Party certainly provides that. In our extensive testing (as in it’s been used almost daily as our main source of music) the weight and heft of the speaker didn’t stop it from moving on top of our Ikea cabinet when we cranked up the bass of our song selection; though I’m sure that’s more to do with the sheer power of the subwoofer in this unit than any design flaws. Seriously, the bass is SO heavy that you can feel the air moving out from the speakers – talk about windswept!

One of the major plus point for the Divoom Voombox Party is the ease in which it connects to your devices – in my case the iPhone 6 Plus. I can honestly say it was the smoothest experience I’ve had with a non-Apple branded product. In fact the experience of connecting the two devices via bluetooth was as easy and hassle-free as when connecting Apple’s devices together… A couple of clicks and voila! You’re connected and blasting out tunes. As an added bonus, should you have an NFC-enabled phone (Samsung owners I’m looking at you) then you connect your phone that way too. Oh, and did I mention the Voombox Party also has a covered 3.5mm jack allowing to connect your wired devices as well – perfect for hooking up an mp3 player and making the most of the speakers long battery life.

Speaking of which, it depends on just how loud and just how bass-filled your tunes are that determines the battery life of the Voombox Party. Yes, the box states 8 hours playback time on a full charge (and I’ve read reviws claiming 9+ hours too) – which takes between three and four hours to charge via a micro USB port, though some have stated it’s less if you use a USB plug/charger instead, though the Voombox does not come with one. Crank up the volume though and that time is cut down, but not to a significant detriment of your enjoyment. We still got around 7 hours of uninterrupted playback before the bluetooth connection became unstable (a sure sign of a draining battery a la wireless keyboards and mice) and we had to move our devices closer together.

However the Voombox Party is not JUST a bluetooth speaker, it’s also a handfree speakerphone too (hence the call button on top of the device). Yes, should you be listening to music via a mobile phone and someone calls you, the music will stop and you can take the call via the speaker. Then, as if by magic, once the call ends the music resumes. Simple, yet in a crowded bluetooth speaker market and even more so in one filled will speakers that CLAIM they can be used for handsfree purposes, it’s still comes a surprise when it all goes so smoothly.

And that’s the one thing you’ll take away from using the Voombox Party. How simple and smooth everything works. There’s no messing with pairing your device, no worrying about the bluetooth connection and certainly no problems with the sound quality… With this particular speaker Divoom have really set the bar high for the ENTIRE portable speaker market. Personally, I doubt I’ll find a better balance of use and sound in future.
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Available in black and silver, the Divoom Voombox Party comes packed with a USB recharging cable and 3.5mm audio cable and the obilgatory user manual. It’s available now at Amazon for less than £60. A bargain if you ask me.

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