Tiny Bluetooth speakers have proliferated the markets and come in varied shapes, sizes and features. I personally prefer these small cute speakers which are epitome of portability within the home as well as when you are packing smart and traveling light.
STK Accessories is a UK-based brand that goes back some 20 years and has presence in a dozen countries with a product portfolio in mobile accessories including speakers, powerbanks and cases. When the Groovez SMC650 from their kitty arrived at my desk, the not-so-flamboyant design didn’t excite me much but looks can be deceiving and I was up for some pleasant surprises.
Before we delve into the finer details, here is what STK Groovez SMC 650 0ffers to give you a head start.
- 3 Watt speaker
- Bluetooth connectivity
- Built-in FM
- Speakerphone function
- MicroSD card support
- Aux in function
- 300mAh battery
- Up to 3 hours music playback
- 10meters range
- Weight 163 grams
The SMC 650 comes in a rather big box for the tiny speaker but the package details adequate information prominently for people who would be glancing through on store shelves. The box content includes: the speaker, 3.5mm audio in-line cable, microUSB charging cable and a user manual that gives comprehensive info on the speaker.
Design and build quality
The bluetooth speakers have given a creative liberty to the product designers to get maverick in their designs. There are speakers looking like hand-grenade and even STK’s flasko speakers have a quirky design but with Groovez, they have opted for a sober design that might not gather curious looks but a design that finds common ground between functionality, portability and decent looks.
A glossy body wraps the speaker and thin chrome trim separates the bottom where the controls rests. The Groovez branding is subtly placed, I like it when the brands don’t go about screaming about their name loud. Around the edges on one side you can access the music and speaker phone controls in metallic finish- the play/pause, volume up and down that also works as track change buttons, and a button to answer/end calls.
Move around the edge, you will find the AUX input, a red indicator that blinks when the power is low or when charging, the charging port and a microSD slot.
There is rubber strip circling the base for extra grip when you place the speaker on table. You also find the power on/off button. There are also pair of LED’s which glow when the bluetooth is On.
The top has the speaker grille with a chrome ring accentuating it. A 3 watts speaker is housed inside.
Pairing the Groovez SMC650 to your device is pretty straight forward. A voice prompt notifies you when the speaker is on and ready for pairing and also when it is paired. It also prompts you when the battery juice is running low and the device needs to be charged. There are two blue LED’s at the base and they flicker when the device is searching for bluetooth devices and goes steady when it is connected.
Pressing the play/pause button shifts between various modes, the default being the bluetooth. The ‘tuner mode’ tunes for all the FM channel signals and once tuned, you can listen to the FM channels, the controls to shift channels are the previous / next buttons. The FM audio quality is pretty good with no disturbance. The in-line cable acts the antenna for the FM connectivity.
If you have your favourite collections stored in a microSD card, you can insert the card into the TF reader slot and listen to your playlists. Here too, the previou/next buttons comes in handy for the song navigation.
Don’t allow the small size of the Groovez SMC650 to deceive you, the tiny speaker can throw a high volume and still retain the clarify. The vocals are crisp. What I really appreciate of the speaker is its ability to balance the bass and treble nicely. The individual notes are sharp and even if you crank up the volume, it doesn’t get muddier. Simply put, its pleasure to listen on this speaker almost all genres of music. Unlike some other speakers which tend to irritate you with a harsh voice prompt, the prompts here are pleasing.
This little wireless speaker is one of the best I have come across in this price segment. A good music re-production, and with its built-in FM and micro SD card support as add-on features, it offers great value for money. At Rs. 2,199 the Groovez SMC650 is a good deal.