One of the better Yuletide traditions is the venerable holiday Advent Calendar, in which each day of December leading up to Christmas is marked off on a special calendar by opening its corresponding door to find a small gift, toy or chocolate squirreled away inside.
This year, we here at Cult of Mac decided we wanted to give our readers their very own Apple-themed advent calendar, filled with the year’s best apps, gadgets, stories and other curios. So each day in December, we’re going to lovingly peel back the door on the Cult of Mac 2012 Advent Calendar to reveal another delicious morsel, something really special that came out this year that we think every one of you should enjoy.
Today’s little morsel? It’s the Supertooth Disco 2.
The Supertooth Disco 2 isn’t the best-looking bluetooth speaker in my home. Nor is it the best-sounding. It’s not even the least buggy (the low-charge light sometimes stays on after charging). But in a choice between the Jambox, the Big Jambox, the original Supertooth, the Braven 650 and my regular mains-powered speakers hooked up to AirPort Expresses, the Supertooth 2 is the one I use most often. Why? Convenience.
I listen to a lot of podcasts, both when I’m outside and when I’m home. If I’m showering, cooking or doing anything alone, I’m listening to modern-day talk radio.
And for this the Supertooth 2 can’t be beat. First off, its flower-vase shape gives it a small footprint for its size, letting me stick it up on a kitchen shelf or on nestle it in amongst the dirty dishes as I wash them.
It also has big, easy-to-use controls up top. The Jambox is almost as convenient in terms of size, but doesn’t have play/pause or skip buttons on it. This means that every time you want to pause, or skip an ad, you need to dig your iPhone out of your pocket.
The Supertooth 2 not only has buttons for all this, but they’re sized and variously raised or sunk to make it easy to use them by feel alone.
The speaker is also louder than the Jambox, which means I can actually listen to podcasts in the shower, even with a noisy electric fan warming up the chilly winter air. And the top panel appears to be water-resistant enough for me to reach out of the shower and push a button.
Finally, this is the only speaker I have which uses Bluetooth 4. In practice that seems to mean that it is always available. Unlike the other speakers, which often need power cycling or other tricks to get them to see my iPhone after a couple hours apart, the Supertooth requires only that I hit the play button. This makes it immediately connect and take over playback duties from the phone.
This is really great when you come in from outside and want to switch seamlessly from headphones to speaker.
I still use the other speakers a lot. The Big Jambox is amazing paired with an iPad for movies or TV shows. The littler Jambox is fantastic for weekend trips and vacations (as is the larger-but-lighter Braven), and the Supertooth 1 is good for patio parties.
But for podcasts, the Supertooth 2 is pretty much perfect.