In what has to be one of most crowded consumer electronic categories there is, finding a truly high-quality and affordable portable, wireless speaker can be a difficult search.
The specs are all roughly the same, designs range from the subtle to the bizarre and, perhaps most important, the sound quality is all over the map.
Enter NYNE's new NYNE Bass, a solidly built, rugged wireless speaker system featuring Bluetooth 4.0, device charging over USB and 10 hours of battery life.
We'll get to the unit's additional features in a bit, but first we'll touch upon what immediately struck us about the NYNE Bass. Clearly designed for outdoor use, the Bass has a solid out-of-box feel weighing in a roughly 6 ½ lbs. A rugged outer shell design keeps the speaker's more delicate insides safe while rubberized strips around the unit's rounded outer edges keep the speaker solidly stationary during play.
While the breadbasket design specs might not win many style points, the speaker, at roughly 13x6" is easy to transport with no fear of falling over once you pick a spot to place it. Available in black/silver and white/grey color alignments, the rounded speaker grill tops out with a very easy see and operate button row that includes power, volume, forward and back song search, pause and a speaker phone button for hands free calling, though when I'm listening to music in my backyard on a beautiful summer day, no calls please. The unit's Bluetooth switch is located on the lower back panel.
But enough about design minutia, let's talk about the sound.
While all of the above is well and good, what truly separates the NYNE Bass from others in this price range ($150-$250) is the sound quality the speaker delivers. Delivering rich, full sound at lower volume levels, the unit doesn't lose much ground when you crank it up.
For a speaker intended for outdoor use NYNE needed to deliver big time in the area of amplitude and we dare say the product does just that. While we're not about to suggest the NYNE bass produces absolutely flawless sound at the highest volume, we detected very little of the distortion issues inherent in portables within this price range.
As the name would suggest the warmth of the mid-bass and bass held up well with a consistently clear and crisp tone. The overall sound was certainly bigger that the 13x6" dimensions might otherwise suggest.
In conclusion, the NYNE Bass represents a significant improvement over the company's previous portable speakers where there have been some high volume distortion issues. We're happy to report they've been addressed in this product with 20 Watts of power and a minimalist design that channels that full, rich sound in whatever direction you point the speaker - preferably toward the hammock.
Simply put, the company has rolled out an excellent outdoor music solution that falls in line with the budget of a large percentage of the portable speaker buying public.