Portable Speaker Review: iLuv Mo'Beats HD Bluetooth Speaker Review
Editor's Ratings (1-5): 4
What's Hot: Loud sound, good audio and easy Bluetooth pairing with NFC.
What's Not: Lacks bass power.
Reviewed by Tong Zhang
The iLuv Mo'Beats HD Bluetooth Speaker is a compact portable wireless speaker that can produce loud volume and good audio while keeping the 11 x 2.95 x 2.83-inch form. The Bluetooth speaker is easy to pair with any smartphone or tablet, and for devices with NFC, it requires no more than a swipe of your device over the NFC symbol on the speaker to pair. The speaker has rechargeable battery and good battery life so that you can use it away from AC outlet. The audio quality is good for a speaker this size but not brilliant like the iLuv Aud 5. Like the Aud 5, the iLuv Mo'Beats HD Bluetooth Speaker also offers an auxiliary audio input to work with any device with a 3.5mm output.
The iLuv Mo'Beats HD Bluetooth Speaker is larger than the Mo'Beats speaker and comes in a box shape rather than a tube. The speaker houses twin full range drivers with a passive bass radiator behind metal mesh and offers a foldable tablet slot on top of the speaker where you can prop up your 10" or smaller tablet while playing movies, music or more. The compact speaker has hardware button controls on the top for easy access and the controls include volume buttons, track forward and back buttons, play/pause/Bluetooth button and SRS (enhances Sound Stage audio) button. The iLuv Mo'Beats HD Bluetooth Speaker also offers small LED lights that indicate power on, Bluetooth pairing status, battery power and more.
Behind the control buttons and LED lights, the iLuv Mo'Beats HD Bluetooth Speaker hides a tablet slot with a foldable cover. The tablet slot cover is mechanical, not spring loaded. It runs almost the length of the speaker measuring 10.5" and should be able to hold 10" tablets in both landscape and portrait orientations and any tablet that's smaller. The iLuv Mo'Beats HD Bluetooth Speaker offers a slide-out metal stand on the back for extra stability in case your tablet is extra heavy.
The iLuv Mo'Beats HD Bluetooth Speaker offers Bluetooth pairing via NFC and you can put your NFC devices next to the symbol on the top of the speaker where it's closest to the NFC chip built-in. For additional audio input, the iLuv Mo'Beats HD Bluetooth Speaker has a 3.5mm audio jack on the back along with the micro USB charging port and the power on/off slider. The speaker has rubber feet on the bottom to prevent it from sliding on slippery surface.
The iLuv Mo'Beats HD Bluetooth Speaker has built-in Bluetooth 2.1+EDR that works with Bluetooth A2DP devices. The speaker is easy to pair manually, just press and hold "play/pause/Bluetooth" button until the LED light blinks white rapidly and the audio prompt notifies you that the speaker is ready to pair. Use your smartphone or tablet to search and pair with the speaker.
Pairing is even more fool proof if you have a device that has built-in NFC. Wave your phone or tablet over the NFC sign on the speaker, the iLuv Mo'Beats HD Bluetooth Speaker will pair Bluetooth with your device automatically. Make sure you know where the NFC plate/chip is on your device and put it as close to the speaker's NFC as possible. We tested NFC pairing with Android smartphones including the HTC One, the Samsung Galaxy S4, the new Nexus 7 and the Google Nexus 10, and found it paired with all devices. With some devices we had to wave them a few more times than others, for example, the Galaxy S4 took a few more swipes than the HTC One.
For a speaker this size, the iLuv Mo'Beats HD has loud volume. The full-sized drivers provide enough power to produce sound that can fill a large room. The jAura audio technology ensures the drivers to delivery clear audio with nice dynamic range. We found the audio quality excellent for mid-range sound. The audio does distort a bit when playing high-pitched tracks and bass is good but not as pronounced as the bass we found on other small speakers such as the Jam Party Boombox. But the audio has better clarity on the Mo'Beats HD compared to the Jam Party Boombox, and different tracks sound more accurate via Mo'Beats HD's drivers. Audio through the 3.5mm auxiliary input port sounds just as good and loud as via Bluetooth and both speakers sound balanced.
The iLuv Mo'Beats HD speaker has built-in rechargeable battery that offers at least 6 hours of music playback. The Bluetooth speaker comes with an AC charging adapter and a power on/off switch that comes in handy to conserve power. The speaker has a battery LED indicator and it'll blink red when the power is low and it'll stay solid red when the speaker is charging. The LED goes off when the speaker is fully charged.
Compact and reasonably light at 1.5 lbs., the iLuv Mo'Beats HD Bluetooth Speaker is a good choice for dorm rooms, small parties and backyard BBQ. The speaker can produce loud sound and good audio quality and works with any Bluetooth device. The phone and tablet slot holds your device while it's playing music or movies, and you can use the speaker without being close to an AC outlet. The caveats include a weak bass and if you're using a thick case with your tablet, it might not fit in the slot holder.