Sugr Cube

Just don’t dunk it in your tea!

Mac Format - - APPLE CHOICE - matt bolton

¤139 (about £107) FROM Sugr, sugr-cube.eu

Fea­tures Mo­tion con­trols, Air­Play/Spo­tify Con­nect

This lit­tle por­ta­ble speaker is re­ally nicely made, and comes packed with some great fea­tures.

Its wood-fin­ished shape mim­ics iOS app icons (and, for good mea­sure, its own app matches the look of the speaker); it con­nects to Wi-Fi net­works for wire­less au­dio stream­ing; and it has cute ges­ture con­trols: when mu­sic’s play­ing, you can tap its top to pause or play, or tilt it 45° to skip tracks. It’s easy to set up via its ac­com­pa­ny­ing iOS app, which also gives you ac­cess to a num­ber of the stream­ing ser­vices it sup­ports, in­clud­ing Pan­dora and in­ter­net ra­dio sta­tion op­tions. These are de­cent – the app works well enough (though we’re not sold on swip­ing to nav­i­gate through its ser­vices), but it won’t win any de­sign awards.

But the key thing is that it sup­ports Air­Play, so you can play pretty much any­thing to it. (It also sup­ports Spo­tify Con­nect.) All this com­bines into a seem­lingly great pack­age, with one prob­lem: the sound isn’t im­pres­sive. It’s good in the mid-range, es­pe­cially for speech, so it works well for talk ra­dio. But the bass is weak, and the tre­ble is se­verely lack­ing in de­tail. You sim­ply don’t get the most out of your mu­sic when lis­ten­ing on this – and that’s a prob­lem when you’re spend­ing over £100.

It’s small and pretty but just can’t match the sound qual­ity you’d ex­pect.

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