Truly portable Bluetooth speakers come in all sorts of flavors. You have cheap, expensive, serviceable, quiet, loud -- take your pick. When we think about any of those, the first image to spring to mind is a bland rectangle or a cylinder-shaped piece of tech that simply plays music. Well, a certain Hong-Kong based company named Divoom decided that Bluetooth speakers don’t have to be boring single-purpose devices but can instead be a bundle of joy from both the design and functional perspective.
Their newest outing -- a Bluetooth speaker named Ditoo takes this philosophy to the next level and we, of course, wanted to test each nook and cranny of its functional design as well as its inner workings.
THE DESIGN AND SOUND QUALITY
Had it not been for the imaginative packaging holding the Ditoo saying that it’s an “Ultimate Music Experience” -- I wouldn’t be able to tell that it’s a speaker. By far the most striking aspect of Ditoo has got to be its awesome retro design. (As you can see) The device literally looks like some sort of small retro computer which is sure to produce a real “WOW!” effect even before you turn it on.
Like many of Divoom’s smart speakers, Ditoo also has a built-in pixel-screen that is a joy to look at. Not only is it bright and colorful in all lighting conditions but it’s also imaginatively used for every function of the speaker to great effect. Every function and command is followed by a corresponding pixel visual and even more screen functions open up once you connect the speaker to your smartphone and the awesome Divoom app.
The next surprise comes once you figure out that the six keyboard buttons on the front are actually mechanical and they produce the recognizable clicky sound when pressed. There’s even a small handle that you can use to control certain functions of Ditoo. The best part about these controls, besides them being completely in line with the retro aesthetic, is that they aren’t just for show and are in fact completely functional. Thanks to them, many features of the Ditoo can be used without ever connecting it to a smartphone.
The buttons even have monochrome white LED’s which add to the already impressive design philosophy. While it’s made out of plastic, the entire body of the speaker features a kind of glossy smooth finish that’s highly resistant to scratches. The speaker itself is situated at the very top of the device and it points upwards so it’ll sound good no matter where it’s situated in relation to you. The backside even has a small bass reflex port which was something that wasn’t present some of the other of Divoom’s smart speaker models and which greatly improves the sound quality.
On the right side, you have a type-C USB connector for charging the device as well as the power button that also serves for when you want to check the battery life. Lastly, you have the micro SD card port which further highlights the Ditoo’s standalone capabilities since you can just pop in an SD card with some music and never once connect it to your smartphone if you don’t want to.
|Dimensions||90L X 113,8W X 121,2H mm|
|Speaker size||45 mm|
|Playback time||6-8 hours|
|Battery capacity||3000 mAh|
|Battery charge time||4hrs|
|Wireless range||up to 10 m|
Its weight of 500 grams mainly comes down to the 3000 mAh battery which enables it to play music for a whopping 6 hours before needing to recharge. This number can be shorter, however, depending on the brightness level, animations you have running on the screen and if the keyboard LED’s are turned on.
Speaking of sound quality, Ditoo performs great. While it has a small 10-watt, power output, it also has a digital signal processor which contributes to audio clarity across all volume levels. As mentioned, the small reflex port also helps in regard to audio quality and the bass, while not incredibly punchy, is still very noticeable and enjoyable -- especially for a device as small as this. The Ditoo can get very loud and distortions only occur in certain songs at the absolute highest volume level.
While this is still a far cry from high-end devices, the Ditoo doesn’t aim to be at that level when it comes to sound quality. It instead aims to boost its musical appeal with the addition of awesome visuals that come courtesy of the built-in screen, and it’s there that the device truly shines.
PERFORMANCE AND FEATURES
Once the Ditoo is turned on, it will greet you with a small little animation followed by a retro melody that will foreshadow the experience you’ll have while using it. The Bluetooth 5.0 connection is rock solid and there’s no delay or interruptions to speak of when playing media from a connected device.
The default screen will always display and cycle between a couple of animations for the current time, weather, temperature and the date. As mentioned, some of the functions can be controlled with the usage of the physical buttons present on the speaker itself. A short press of the light button can cycle between different categories of animations while a long press can cycle between animations in the same category.
Then there are the self-explanatory left and right arrows as well the plus and minus buttons which are neatly situated in a manner similar to the WASD buttons. Not only can you use them to increase and decrease the volume and brightness but you’ll also be able to use them to navigate the menus and apps.
(Speaking of which) The bright “m” button is the one that takes you to the app menu and you use the small knob on the right to select one. Here you’ll find a selection of games like Tetris, block breaker, flappy bird, the snake, and car dodge as well as a magic 8-ball and a virtual dice roll. While they are nothing to write home about, we are still talking about a Bluetooth speaker where their inclusion is greatly appreciated and takes the otherwise simple concept to a new level.
You also have a simple coloring app, an alarm, a countdown timer, a stopwatch as well as a noise meter all accessible from the device itself. Once you want to access the plethora of its other features, you’ll have to connect it to the Divoom smartphone app. We previously said much about it when reviewing the Divoom Timebox and not much has changed since then.
The application is still very user-friendly and enables you to access all the previously discussed apps available through physical buttons, but also much more. First up, you can check out a literal ton of awesome user-created animations which you can play on the Ditoo. They fall into a couple of categories and there’s something for everyone here ranging from simple and humorous to movie, pop-culture, and gaming related ones. The app even allows you to save a couple of them to the device itself so you can play them later if you don’t have access to your phone for some reason.
What’s exclusive to the Divoom app itself are the Mixer and the Sleep features. The mixer is a fun little instrument soundboard that can be used to record simple beats or songs. While soundboards are nothing new to smartphones, the Ditoo, besides playing the sounds, also displays fun little animations for each sound played.
The sleep feature, on the other hand, as the name suggests, offers a bunch of sounds presets for when it’s time to get tucked in. These range from a raging thunder or a simple rainfall to a chill campfire or a summer evening. The screen will also turn into a warm shade of orange to completely set the bedtime mood.
The Ditoo also has a built-in microphone that will enable you to answer calls. While the in-call sound quality is generally good, talking through Ditoo can often sound a bit muffled to the person on the other side. Where the smartphone connection will come in handy are the notifications as the Ditoo will display a corresponding icon for each time you receive one with applications like WhatsApp, Twitter, Instagram and more being supported.