gadg-et-oid [gaj-it-oid]


1. having the characteristics or form of a gadget;
resembling a mechanical contrivance or device.

Adin S7B7 Portable Vibration Speaker

When you hear the words “Vibration Speaker”, I wouldn’t be surprised if you recoil in horror. Mobile vibration speakers are typically associated with distorted, poor quality sound rife with unwanted buzzing. And there’s good reason for this; when you’re relying on the surface you’re sitting the speaker on, or attaching it onto, to produce your sound then you need to pick the right surface. This reputation isn’t helped by the fact that most mobile vibration speakers are awful, either.

The Adin S7B7 is different. It combines all the functionality you’d expect from a normal, portable, rechargeable, Bluetooth speaker with a hoofing great big vibrating “foot” which it sits atop. You still have to pick the right surface, but when you do the results are satisfying and even pretty good for such a small device.

It’s not only Bluetooth, the Adin Vibration Speaker has both a line-in for direct connection to your laptop, a line-out for using Bluetooth to get your audio to another speaker, and a hefty battery for keeping it powered on the move.

The top of the speaker has a Play/Pause, Vol+/-, Track Prev/Next and an answer-call button for use with mobile phones. The biggest let down with the design is the lack of an analogue volume control, it seems intuitive that the top would twist to adjust the volume; but it doesn’t. Buttons are all you get, meaning there’s no fine-grained volume control.

Despite missing this obvious design choice, the Adin looks great. The entire speaker is cylindrical; a narrow top with the status LED running around its circumference containing the controls, microphone and, presumably, the battery. And a wider base containing the speaker driver, power connection, power/mode switch and audio in/out sockets.

This two-stage look, and the small metal “foot” that it stands upon, lend the Adin a science-fiction air. The “foot” is how the speaker transfers vibration to the surface that it stands upon, it’s coated with a non-slip and, I would guess, buzz dampening material and it works, extremely well.

The right surface for the Adin tends to be a strong, heavy, wooden material with some separation from the floor. My office desk proved particularly effective yielding a decent quality of sound and, surprisingly, shutting the speaker in a kitchen cabinet makes for a very decent and invisible room-filling sound system in the kitchen.

Turned up the Adin is extremely punchy, and on a good surface you can get some decent volume out of it. On most surfaces, however, the higher you turn it up the more distortion you’re going to get.

With its small size, beefy internal battery and wireless operation the Adin made a great little office prank speaker and a good ambient sound generator for around the home. It’s design means it is effectively directionless, and fills a room extremely well, but you pay for this in sound quality. The artwork on the Adin packaging seems to suggest it’s aimed at gamers playing multi-player, but I don’t really see why you’d opt for such a speaker over the ones in your television. Obviously there’s such a thing as a PC gamer (I’m one of them) but we’re more likely just to use headphones and our own computers so nobody else can hear our footsteps or see our screen.

Overall the Adin S7B7 worth picking up if you want a compact and stylish speaker, and is a surprisingly good product from a brand I’ve never heard of before.

Wednesday, July 17th, 2013, Home Entertainment, Mobile Phones.