Is there room for yet another small, portable Bluetooth speaker in an ever-more-crowded market? I sure hope so. Theis small but surprisingly powerful, easily customized and some features that make it a great option if you are looking to take your music on the go while charging your mobile device at the same time.
According to TYLT, the
TU-NZ feature set was created to deliver mind blowing sound combined with ultimate in new NFC and battery technology.
TUNZ delivers incredible sound for its compact size because we use two x 3-watt drivers and a passive radiator for superior bass quality.
In The Box:
- TUNZ Rechargeable Bluetooth Speaker
- Interchangeable Vibration-Canceling Silicon Bands (3)
- Micro-USB Charging Cable
- 3.5mm AUX Cable
- Carry Bag
- User Guide
Let’s take a look at the TYLT TUNZ on camera and then dig a little more deeply into its feature set.
Obviously the first thing you notice about the TUNZ when you first remove it from the packaging is the vibration canceling Silicon Band wrapped around it and the inclusion of two additional bands. Without this unusual “extra” the TUNZ is a fairly nondescript black box of a speaker. Add one of the bands however and you suddenly have a Bluetooth speaker with a unique look all its own. And since TYLT saw fit to include two extra vibration canceling Silicon Bands in additional colors you will be able to change your speaker’s look depending upon your mood or decor.
The bands aren’t just about appearances however. No, they raise the TUNZ up and off of whatever surface it sits upon and isolates it so vibrations from the speaker don’t transfer to the surface and vis a versa.
It also sets the speaker at a slight angle so it is firing up just the tiniest amount. That’s great if, for example, you are placing the speaker on a desk or a counter.
The TUNZ packs some pretty impressive specs. It is NFC Enabled, has a 2800 mAh battery that plays music for up to 20 hours at 50% volume and has a noise canceling microphone so you can use it for making and taking calls. On the top are touch controls for volume up/down and music play/pause. There is also a control for making and answering calls. All of the controls sit subtly on top of the speaker and don’t call attention to themselves.
Two 3 watt speakers and a passive radiator work together to pump out impressive sound that won’t disappoint.
The back of the speaker is where you will find the bulk of the ports and controls. On the right is the on/off switch. I appreciate speakers that have a physical on/off switch as it allows me to make sure I don’t accidentally leave the speaker on and drain the battery. I really hate when you go to listen to music and the battery is dead because you forgot to shut it down the last time you listened to it.
To the left of the on/off switch is the microUSB charging port. The included cable makes quick work of juicing up the speaker.
On the left side of the speaker’s back are two 3.5mm ports. One is an AUX-In while the other is an AUX-Out. They not only allow you to enjoy music from any wired audio source but they also allow you to daisy chain a number of different TUNZ speakers for even bigger sound.
To the left of the microUSB port is a full-size universal USB charging port. It offers 1 Amp and is great when your mobile device is low on juice. Sure, charging your device will cut down on the speaker’s runtime but life is full of small tradeoffs.
The speaker has yet another trick. It is equipped with an internal TYLT TUNZ TAGZ. This is a programmable NFC Tag that can interact with NFC-enabled devices. As tYLT explains,
With a single tap you can launch multiple customized settings and apps.
TYLT exp,wins that in order to use this feature you simply install the free NFC Task Launcher App, launch the app and follow the step-by-step instructions. From there it is as simple as tapping the NFC-enabled device to the speaker and taking the steps that are indicated. It all sounds great and makes me wish Apple had seen fit to include NFC in the current generation of iOS devices. **SIGH***
The NFC aspect of the speaker is great for those using NFC-enabled devices but at the end of the day speakers are all about the sound. And yes, the TUNZ sounds quite good. It is one of those speakers that will make you very happy on the go. I don’t see this as a speaker you will want to use as your main home audio system- although if you were to daisy chain a few of them it might do just fine on this front- but for all other purposes this is a speaker that should keep you quite happy. Better still, I have little doubt that, were you to give one to someone as a gift this holiday season I think they would put it at the top of their favorite gifts this year… Or any year.
- Input Voltage: 5V 0.5 Amp (Micro USB)
- Output Charging Current: 4.75V – 5.25V – 1 Amp
- Lithium Ion Battery: 2,800 mAh
- Battery Charge Time: 6-7 Hours
- Bluetooth: Version 3.0
- Output:80dB Max Output
- Connectivity: 3.5mm Input and output jack / Bluetooth
- Touch Controls: Volume, Play, Pause, Answer & End Calls
- Weight: 12.9 oz.
I’ve looked at quite a few Bluetooth speakers this year and the TUNZ stands out thanks to its design. That’s no surprise since I’ve come to expect cool design from TYLT. What pleasantly surprised me was the way in which the TUNZ stands out in terms of both its features and audio. At $149.99 it is right in the ballpark with similarly-sized Bluetooth speakers and most of those don’t have the features or good looks of the TUNZ..
What I Like: Small but packs in two 3 watt speakers and a passive bass radiator; Good battery life and includes the ability to charge a smartphone or similar mobile device; Three interchangeable vibration canceling silicon bands; NFC-enabled; Ability to dish chain multiple speakers
What Needs Improvement: Without the silicon bands the speaker looks boring; Good battery life but we have seen speakers that run longer
Source: Manufacturer supplied review sample