CREATIVE SOUND BLASTER ROAR
Plenty of features. Great sound and impressive volume. Limited stereo separation.
Creative is no stranger to the speaker market, and the new Roar certainly made itself heard when it was launched locally in February. Creative packed no less than five drivers into the diminutive Roar - two forward-facing drivers in charge of the highs, an upward firing active bass unit in the middle to handle the mids and bass, and two side firing radiators to handle the bass. Creative also employs two amplifiers to ensure that the drivers have sufficient juice to go to their limits. A “Roar” button further boosts volume and is great when you are taking the speaker outdoors, though this will drain its battery faster. Interestingly, Creative recommends “Roar” mode to be used when plugged into a wall outlet, which defeats the outdoors purpose.
Bluetooth and NFC pairing is supported, while Creative’s Multipoint technology allows you to have up to two devices connected simultaneously. Obviously only one source will be able to play at a time, but this allows you to save the hassle of having to disconnect one source just to pair the other.
We do like the addition of a microSD slot though, as it allows you to always have some music tracks handy. Even better, the internal microphone can be set to record to microSD, so you can use it to record your conversations or audio played from Bluetooth devices. The USB and micro-USB ports can be used to charge portable devices, and the Roar can even be used as an alarm by sounding a loud siren.
In our audio tests, the Roar excelled and rendering sound well over the entire range. On the Eagles’ Hotel California, the bongo drums sounded deep and impactful and guitars on the intro riff sounded bright and textured. Don Henley’s vocals were well articulated and smooth sounding. Speed and dexterity were exhibited, with a drawback being that there wasn’t much of a sense of stereo separation, an issue that dogs most speakers this size.