23 December 2014

REVIEW: Divoom Voombox-Ongo

On ya go then...

Portable Bluetooth speakers are great to take outdoors for picnics, garden parties and festivals - that is if it's summer and there isn't a chance of rain. What about if you want to take your music with you during the winter, with lashing rain, howling winds and sudden snowfall? Surely your plucky little speaker will perish in all that moisture and rugged conditions? Well not this tough little bastard. Introducing the Divoom Voombox-Ongo.

It's been almost a year since we reviewed (and really liked) the Divoom OnBeat 500 Bluetooth Speaker, so we were super keen to try out another, albeit very different, product from the music reproduction maestros. Whereas the OnBeat delivered in room-filling indoor prowess, the Ongo is all about surviving the worst nature has to throw at it.

That tough colourful body, which weighs in with a similar face-on size as your smartphone (and then a couple of inches of depth) has been designed to be both water and shock resistant, with the only controls on the Voombox-Ongo being set within a sealed rubber plate. This makes it feel extremely robust in the hand, and as the size is remarkably small, it is an easy speaker to grab and handle.

Taking the Ongo outside is very much Divoom's intention, as not only is there a useful clip on one side, but underneath you get a conventional camera-mount screw port. With this you can attach the included cycle mount - yes, this speaker comes with an attachment to affix it to your handlebars, meaning you can enjoy your tunes as you peddle down the side of a mountain. Surely that has to be a first?

So, you can mount this thing on your freaking bike! Personally we think that the Tour de France would be so much more interesting if each cyclist had one of these in tow. And, because the mount is universal, you're also able stick it on a tripod. Why you'd do that, we're not sure; but having the option to do so fills our gadget-loving hearts with glee.

But apart from the water-proof, shock-proof, bike-mounting awesomeness... how does the thing actually sound? Well, that 7 Watt output does a pretty tremendous job considering how small the speaker is, and although the Ongo doesn't reproduce sound quite like it's bigger, indoor-based brothers, we thought the music was rich and deep enough to be enjoyed. Certainly it is by far the best speaker we've tested which has been specially designed for outdoor use, but in day-to-day applications it still performed excellently well.

Available in a choice of colours, this could definitely be a contender for your next rugged 'I'm-an-outdoorsman-now' speaker.


Available from www.amazon.co.uk

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