WHEREAS the majority of new Bluetooth speakers entering the market are seeking to overthrow premium manufacturers like Bose, the Bluetune Bean is an affordable portable option.
Divoom Bluetune Bean
With no airs and graces, the compact offering from Divoom will not appeal to hardcore audiophiles, but is a good fit for those seeking a basic audio option while on the move.
At full volume, the three watt device does not struggle to be heard (turn it on and it jolts into life with an unnervingly-loud ascending jingle) with an output that represents a noticeable upgrade on the internal speakers of most smartphones.
The results are crisp and clear even at close to maximum settings with none of the distortion you might come to expect from a device with such a wallet-friendly price tag.
‘Little bass impact’
At under £25, of course, there are concessions, most notably in the range. Whatever genre of music you stream to the Bean, it is defined by its high end, with little audible bass coming through. Rock and dance tracks in particular are robbed of their punch and impact, but realistically, the speaker does a good job with the tech at its disposal.
If you prefer to listen to speech radio stations or podcasts, then the disparities are not so evident. Streaming the likes of Radio 4 and Talksport via the Android TuneIn app on an HTC One or playing a selection of podcasts, we found the Bean performed well even in large sized rooms, while using it as a hands-free speaker to take phone calls worked well - it also has an inbuilt microphone.
Delivers well at price
It is not the kind of device that will ever take pride of place in a home setup, but it is just the thing to clip to a tent while camping or take on a picnic. The rubberised exterior means that although the Bean is small, it is resilient enough to be hurled into a backpack without fear of it perishing. It is not the kind of tech to gawp over, but for cheap and cheerful Bluetooth audio, it delivers well.