Symphonic Distancing: Duolink Speakerbuds ‘splittable’ speaker with earbuds inside

Christel Deskins

As all technically conversant people know, the combination of Developer interests when twinned with Operations (and vice versa) is known as DevOps. It’s a workable portmanteau that can even be extended with a sandwiched Security add on to DevSecOps. If you’re really fussy, you can add Machine Learning (ML) in […]

As all technically conversant people know, the combination of Developer interests when twinned with Operations (and vice versa) is known as DevOps. It’s a workable portmanteau that can even be extended with a sandwiched Security add on to DevSecOps.

If you’re really fussy, you can add Machine Learning (ML) in as well and get DevSecMLOps.

Equally, we can add Brad to Angelina to get Brangelina, John to Edward to get Jedward and even Simon to Mary to get Smary.

Strangely, Marmite Peanut Butter is known as Marmite Peanut Butter, rather than MarmPB, but that’s just one of those things.

Logically then, it follows that if we were able to combine earbuds (the term we now use of in-ear Airpod style earphones) with loudspeakers and produce one combined unit… then we would get Earspeakers, Loudbuds… or possibly Speakerbuds.

Duolink has opted for Speakerbuds with a new product that it claims to be a world first. 

This handheld Bluetooth speaker is much like many others we’ve seen. The sound quality is not bad (it’s not a rocket-charged JBL powerhouse unit, but it’s loud and clear and does the job)… but it’s little secret does notch that core performance level up a notch.

Symphonic distancing 

The fact that you can split the two speaker halves in half, means you can create a massively more powerful stereo sound effect that any single speaker would find tough to match. You can separate the two halves up to 22-feet apart from each other and they still work.

Would it be too much to suggest that you and a friend could maintain Covid-19 social distancing and share one speaker each while sitting apart? Well, maybe, perhaps.

Users can use the unit as a single unit, a snapped apart pair of speakers (quite nice if you want to put them in the left and right sides of your laptop, or even on both sides of the sofa as you watch a movie)… or take the earbuds hidden inside and pop them in your ears. 

There’s a magnetic clip to keep the earbuds in and a snapping mechanism too. Those things are really lodged in there, so we found that we really needed to prize the Duolink earbuds out with a real dig – fingernails do help. 

On their return to the main device, you need to be equally robust in your action. Snap those things back in properly, or the speakers will think that they’re still detached and not play any sound.

“The Duolink Speakerbud seamlessly switches between a speaker, earbuds – with mic for incoming call pick up using Bluetooth – and stereo speakers to fulfill your every listening need,” notes the company, in a press statement.

The Speakerbuds also have AI noise canceling mics with voice enhancement technology that extracts your voice from noisy environments to ensure calls you make are crystal clear. Even if you were ‘at a festival’ (remember hose?) says Duolink.

Product specs & analysis

The unit is fully charged in 1.5 hours and the earbuds also charge in the speaker so you can charge as you play music. Duolink battery life for the earbuds is four hours and speaker 6 hours.

The device has water resistance to a IP54 rating. That’s not waterproof, but it is water spray proof, dust proof and sweat proof.

A Bluetooth 5.0 connection was achieved by pressing the single button on each speaker concurrently… and there is a USB-C port for charging. 

The earbuds have tap and slide controls to adjust volume and pick up or hang up calls. We found the functions slightly out of kilter and an action that was supposed to increase volume pushed us onto the next track instead, but these types of units often have usage nuances that take some getting used to, or perhaps we have sausage fingers. 

If you like your sound spatially separated and you would enjoy the convenience of earbuds carried inside your speakers then the Duolink Speakerbud could be for you.

This device is priced at £75 for early birds on Kickstarter phase and will retail at £115 (RRP).

  •       Dimensions: 3.82 inches x 3.82 inches x 1.45 inches
  •       Net weight: 200g (7.05 oz)
  •       Colours: red, white and blue

Images courtesy of Duolink

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