SAM­SUNG DA-F61

HWM (Singapore) - - Multi-Test -

At first glance, the Sam­sung DA-F61 portable wire­less speak­ers look a lot like the Bose SoundLink, though they’re ac­tu­ally less boxy by de­sign, as well as be­ing a lit­tle larger than the lat­ter. The DA-F61 goes for the now-clas­sic portable speak­ers look; our test de­vice had a sil­ver mesh and metal­lic ac­cents, cou­pled with a solid brown fab­ric cover. The over­all effect is noth­ing that sets the heart rac­ing, but shouldn’t look out of place in a mod­ern liv­ing room. If any­thing though, Sam­sung seems to have played it safe with the aes­thet­ics.

In terms of func­tional de­sign, the DA-F61 is some­what per­plex­ing. First, the cover needs to be un­furled (or re­moved) when the speak­ers are op­er­at­ing. As such, the cover seems like an ex­tra­ne­ous ad­di­tion if it’s go­ing to be deskbound most of the time. The speak­ers also use a pop-out kick­stand to re­main up­right.

Sam­sung also places the NFC tag to the left side of the DA-F61. As such, the ac­tion of tap­ping and hold­ing the phone in place while the pair­ing process com­pletes can get awk­ward. Pair­ing over Blue­tooth also took a while, and was nowhere as quick as say, the JBL Pow­erUP.

Per­haps the one of the de­sign as­pects that Sam­sung did get right were the me­chan­i­cal but­tons on the right side. A full pop-out vol­ume con­trol knob is pro­vided, as well as an­other but­ton to mute au­dio. Sur­pris­ingly though, the DA-F61 is un­able to de­tect ac­tive au­dio sources au­to­mat­i­cally, and you have to press the func­tion but­ton to switch be­tween Blue­tooth, Aux-in and SoundShare modes. SoundShare mode is a fea­ture unique to Sam­sung. When ac­ti­vated, the speaker au­to­mat­i­cally pairs via Blue­tooth with a com­pat­i­ble Sam­sung TV to pro­vide per­sonal au­dio for the user. In terms of per­for­mance, we cat­e­go­rize the au­dio from the DA-F61 as hav­ing prom­i­nent mids and strong bass. Un­for­tu­nately the tre­bles sounded slightly hol­low which means that the over­all sound from the DA-F61 comes across as slightly un­bal­anced. On songs like Melt My Heart To Stone, Adele’s voice was good all the way un­til it came to the high reg­is­ters. In ad­di­tion, see­ing that mod­ern mu­sic tends to be bass-heavy, the speak­ers also have a built-in bass boost fea­ture to fur­ther pound the point home. In prac­tice how­ever, turn­ing bass boost on re­sulted in muddy low fre­quen­cies, with not much def­i­ni­tion to speak off; this fea­ture should stay turned off.

“SounDSharE MoDE PairS ThE SPEaK­ErS WiTh a CoM­PaT­i­blE SaM­Sung TV For a MorE PEr­Sonal liS­TEn­ing EX­PE­ri­EnCE.”

Wiring can be hard to man­age thanks to the kick­stand.

Lo­cated on the left, the NFC tag is some­what awk­ward to tap.

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