I took the opportunity to visit the family cottage over the long weekend. As I was traveling a few hours each way with a ton of gear, I decided to review a neat portable speaker called a Braven 600. It’s a rugged but stylish little thing with onboard power and some very cool unique features.
The Braven 600 is a portable speaker encased in a rugged aluminum housing that is tough enough to take a knock without any worry. I really like the no compromise hard as nails attitude of this little speaker. I spent the weekend jamming it in backpacks stuffing it in car cup holders and dropping it on every handy tabletop or moderately flat surface. Despite my abuse the 600 looks fresh out of the box; not a scratch to be seen.
The 600 connects to any Bluetooth device with the touch of a button. If you have paired your Bluetooth device before, you won’t have any trouble figuring this little guy out. Once paired, you have a great speaker for music, and a portable speakerphone.
The 600 is controlled primarily through your media player, but there are a few tiny buttons on the housing that allow you to control volume, pair a device, and use the charge feature. I found the buttons a bit small, and awkwardly placed on the end of the unit where they are hard to see.
The 600 sounds good. It’s a little speaker, and as such it has acoustic limitations, but I found the sound quality pleasing. It plays nicely across the volume range with a little distortion creeping in at higher volumes. I never expected it to be comparable to a big 2.1 system and it’s not, but it fits in my pocket and I can take it anywhere.
The battery life is impressive for a fairly light package. I used the 600 daily and it lasted through a long weekend without complaint. In fact, I haven’t charged the speaker since I got it, and it’s still going strong. Braven claims as much as 12 hours of continuous play at moderate volume.
The 600 has a cool power feature. You can charge your media player off the 600’s battery if it runs down before the speaker. I didn’t have to do this because playing music through a Bluetooth connection saved so much power that my iPod never went dead in an entire weekend of usage.
The 600 also has the awesome ability to daisy-chain with other Braven speakers. Say you and a friend are both out with your Bravens and you want to add a little oomph to your Tom Petty. Plug the Bravens together with the provided mini-jacks and they will play in tandem. If more than two Bravens are available, there does not appear to be an upward limit on how many can be chained together.
I like this speaker. It’s a tough, hard working little guy, with classy looks and a big voice. It travels easily and I never worried about accidentally damaging it. If you want to share your music on the go then I heartily recommend a Braven 600.