Bem’s new Outlet has a new take on portable Bluetooth speakers. Instead of packing a rechargeable battery, it just comes with a pair of prongs on the back so you can stick it straight into a power outlet. This does of course mean that you’re out of luck if you want to run it anywhere that doesn’t have mains electricity, but if you never use your $200 Jambox away from your kitchen counter, then you could have bought two Outlets for the same price.
The little 3×5.35×2-inch box also packs a USB port so it can act as a charger, plus jacks for audio input and output, turning it into a kind of Bluetooth version of the Airport Express, letting you hook it up to a bigger stereo and pass audio from its Bluetooth radio.
At $99, it’s hard to argue with this little speaker. If you want an all-rounder that’ll do all this only with a battery, too, then choose the more expensive Braven 650. If you want small size and big sound over everything else, choose the evergreen Jambox. What I really like about all the new BT speakers which drop into my e-mail inbox every day is that they’re really starting to specialize, which is the sign of a mature market. Even the $40 pocket-sized versions don’t sound half bad, which is quite something.
Source: bēm wireless