I love music. And somehow over the years, I’ve slowly begun to listen to it less. After getting my first personal CD player, I would fall asleep with studio headphones on in bed; all while listening to Metallica, NIN or any number of other bands of the late 80’s early 90’s. However, when I’m out on the road all day for work, in a truck I didn’t buy, without a CD player, or any sort of input to the radio, I rely on the radio. Which isn’t great, considering there is one rock station, on the man-made island I live on.
Given the chance to have a Bluetooth speaker around all day, like the MM526, I jumped at the chance. Now I could play any music I want, whenever I wanted! Since I subscribe to Google Play Music, all I have to do is type in the artist I want to listen to, and it will shuffle all, or one of the albums and I’ll have music for hours. Generally, I forget about the service entirely, and my wife is the one that reminds me to turn it on… At any rate, let’s see what this MM526 has to offer the audiophile in us all.
Lumsing MM526 Unboxing
Contrary to most of the items I’ve received from Lumsing, this box was complete with graphics on the exterior, depicting the look of the MM526. It also contained information about the technical specifications and features of the device. The box was clearly meant to be on a retail shelf.
Pulling the foam packing out, revealed the speaker and the two attachments that came with it. There is also a users manual, and a power user card. The attachments are a USB charging cord, and an AUX style male to male extension cable, to allow a direct connection to the speaker. The latter is helpful if you are still holding on to that old iPod; this will fit right into the headphone jack in the iPod.
I didn’t find anything immediately wrong with the construction of this device. It is quite solidly built, and did spend a few days bouncing around my work van, with no ill-effects. The carabiner would turn out to be very useful, as I tend to forget things, so clipping this right to my belt is a nice and easy reminder it’s still with me.
MM526 Features And Specs
Here is the list of technical specifications on the MM526:
- Power: 4W (RMS)
- Battery: 3.7V/1000 mAh
- Battery life: ~8 hours mixed use
- Speaker: 2-3 ohms
- SNR: >70dB
- Dimensions: 80mm x 81mm x 83mm
- Bluetooth Version: 4.0
- Transmission Distance: ~10 meters
- Distortion: ~ 0.5% @ 1W
- Frequency Response: 100Hz – 20kHz
- Charging Voltage: DC 5V, ~500mA
The MM526 includes a stereo amplifier and dual voice coil speakers. It also provides what it calls “Intelligent Voice Prompt” which tells you exactly what is going on with the device. If it is in Bluetooth mode, instead of AUX (something plugged into the headphone port), it will announce “Bluetooth” when you power it on. Once you have connected a device to it via Bluetooth, it will also announce that.
In addition, the MM526 meets or exceeds IP64 standards for dust, moisture and fall damage. The solid construction I was speaking of really points to this fact.
My Thoughts On The MM526
I’ll start off by saying the best thing about this speaker is without doubt, the clarity of sound. Compared to the Huawei device I was using, this speaker pumps out serious volume in comparison. In addition, the construction is solid, and oddly stylish. Being that it is shaped like a wedge, you can directionalize the sound quite well. Point it at the ceiling to get area sound, or in a direction to amplify the sound in one area.
I listen to an F1 podcast over at TheJudge13 every week, and also a morning show, called Free Beer and Hot Wings. This speaker has faithfully played those weekly and daily, respectively, without fail. The battery provided a good 7 hours of life on its first charge. It was north of 6 on its second charge and it is working on 7 right now for its third charge.
As I explained earlier, the carabiner is a Godsend. Hooking the speaker up to my belt loop ensures I won’t lose it during the work day, or remember to bring it in from my truck at night. It is connected to the body of the speaker, and needs an Allen key to remove it (why would you though?).
The buttons provide a solid click on press. Its always nice to get that feedback, so you know you’ve depressed the button fully. However, I’ve had one nagging issue I just can’t shake.
The “Intelligent Voice Prompt” is a great idea on paper, but the implementation of it on this speaker is, well, terrifying. The first time I turned the speaker on, was a test of its ruggedness, when it exclaimed “POWERING ON” and I dropped it. There is no volume setting for this voice, so if you want to turn the speaker off after playing quiet music while your significant other is napping, they will get a nasty “POWERING OFF” when you press the button. Right after the power on message, the following message is the connection type, “BLUETOOTH” followed by “CONNECTED.” It’s all just very loud and clunky.
While I don’t think this detracts from the performance of the device, it certainly hampers the experience. I will continue to use it, because it sounds great and is easy to use, but will shudder every time I hear the voice; “BLUETOOTH.”
Product: Lumsing MM526 Bluetooth Speaker