Marley Chant Mini
Michael beats the drum for this new product
One of the earliest methods of sending messages over lengthy distances was that of a drum or, in some cases, a series of drums spread out to pass a signal along a line. It is, therefore, somewhat appropriate that House of Marley, part of the HoMedics chain of companies, has developed a Bluetooth speaker to broadcast music in the form of a native-style drum. This is the Marley Chant Mini.
Designed by Marley in Michigan, USA and manufactured in China, the Chant Mini follows the House of Marley’s guiding principle of using eco-conscious products that are sustainably sourced, cause minded and waste-conscious, as laid down by Bob Marley’s vision of One Love, One World. In this case, the Chant Mini has been made using blended bio-plastic recyclable aluminium and exclusive REWIND™ fabric, which encases the speaker body and includes a loop for attaching the speaker to clothing. REWIND fabric is blended from reclaimed hemp, organic cotton and fibres of recycled plastic bottles.
Rising through a height of 85mm, the diameter of the Chant Mini increases from 70mm at the base to 83mm at the top. The Chant Mini is available in a choice of navy, blue, black, denim and palm units. The speaker comes with a short standard-tomicro-USB lead for charging the device and a carabineer clip that can be used to attach the speaker to your clothing via the loop mentioned earlier.
When connecting the Chant Mini to a smartphone, you need to pair the devices using Bluetooth. You can then play music stored on the smartphone through the Chant Mini’s active / passive combo driver. Decorating the front of the Chant Mini is a rubberised control panel. Using this panel, you can access controls for turning power on and off, adjusting the volume level, and deactivating the Bluetooth facility. The same controls can be used to accept / reject and end incoming phone calls to the smartphone as you use the Chant Mini as a speakerphone with its built-in microphone.
Sitting to the left of the control panel, and near the base of the drum, is a small flap embellished with the word Marley. Raising this flap reveals a pair of connection sockets. There is a micro-USB port for charging the device’s 1100mAh lithium-ion battery, which can deliver up to six hours of playing power. The second socket is for a 3.5mm jack connection for use when linking the Chant Mini to an audio source that does not support Bluetooth or to any device when battery power has been exhausted and is not available.
This connection compartment also houses an LED light. The light glows red to indicate that the battery is being charged. I felt that the positioning of this red light was such that it made it difficult to see it from certain angles. I never knew for certain that recharging was complete.
The Chant Mini’s audio quality delivered by its 2" active passive combo driver is hardly going to blow your mind with its clarity and immersive ability, but then you would not expect this from a device of this size and price. However, it should be fine for personal listening when travelling around.
A speaker that should appeal to green enthusiasts