What We Like
What We Don't Like
The most common design of Bluetooth speakers you will run into these days is a simple cuboid type. Axess found that to be a bit too average, which is why their SPBT1031 comes in a cylindrical chassis. There are several advantages of this design, especially when you consider the type of hardware Axess has chosen for this particular model.
Build quality is pretty decent for a rather cheap speaker. One of the issues with Axess SPBT1031 is that it looks like those waterproof/dirt proof models. However, that is not the case. Even so, its shell is still durable enough to deal with frequent, conventional use. The speaker comes with a strap loop on each side, allowing you to sling it over your shoulder.
At 2.8 lbs, it is not the lightest thing out there, but it sure isn’t heavy. It is actually pretty comfortable to carry with you even for a longer period of time.
The core of the speaker are its transducers. Unlike many other models out there, Axess SPBT1031 packs two 2″ drivers on one side, and an actual 3″ woofer cone on the other. The combined power of this configuration is at around 7 Watts.
Another aspect where Axess SPBT1031 really comes to shine is connectivity. You are looking at a standard Bluetooth support, but if that doesn’t work out, you have other options. Namely, Axess SPBT1031 features and SD card slot as well as a USB port. The built in battery is a 1000mAh unit which would be questionable in most cases. However, considering the overall power output of this particular speaker, even those 1000mAh will get you plenty of juice.
Overall, you are looking at some 10 hours of operation at medium volume. Controls are simple and located next to the I/O cluster. The quality of buttons isn’t all that great, but chances are you won’t run into any issues.
Performance wise, there are several things we have to understand about this speaker. At 7 Watts of power, there is only so much volume one can expect. Axess SPBT1031 isn’t too loud, but it brings enough volume to be considered practical in a variety of applications. The fact that there is a dedicated 3″ woofer in there next to two drivers, we were pleasantly surprised by the bass response we got. Trebles and mids are somewhat tight, but generally enjoyable.
Only real issue here is that the speakers are positioned opposite from each other. The woofer is pointed in an opposite direction from the drivers, which can be an issue outdoors. Indoors, things are much better when you have a set of hard surfaces for the sound to bounce off of. Battery life will strongly depend on how loud you play your music. Generally, you can squeeze out some 8-10 hours of operation which is about average and hence more than acceptable.
If you are looking for a great little speaker with lots of girth on the cheap, Axess SPBT1031 is about as good as it gets. The amount of hardware and features you get for the money is impressive.