Review: FoxL's v2 Dishes Loud Sound Without The Size

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$270 More info from brand

Written by Tony Ibrahim     12/03/2012 | 01:45 | Category name i.e.REAL HI FI

Here is a portable music speaker that outputs potent sound without the bulk. It's the second generation speaker from FoxL and it is one of the few gizmos that'll leave you bewildered, asking yourself "how did they do that?"

It measures 143x55x35mm, which translates to a bar speaker slightly taller than a traditional can of coke. The front of it is dressed in grey steel mesh which gives it pro-music pedigree, resembling the mesh grill you'd see protecting high end speakers.

The left and right side are distinguished by two 4W speakers (coined twoofers, the lovechild of a tweeter and woofer) which pump sound right up to 97 decibels. To help materialise the dry figure, sound becomes painful when it breaches 120 decibels.

We tested the Bluetooth capable version of the FoxL v2 and quickly found that pairing is cinch. As you'd expect, it was just a matter of turning the speaker on, searching for available Bluetooth devices through your phone and then nominating the speaker. It will ask if you'd like to accept the pairing request, but once done most smartphones will connect automatically. It's pretty much the same recipe for tablets and notebooks.
 
It does have the capability of handling phone calls with the Bluetooth model using a microphone cleverly concealed behind the grill. Phone calls are prioritised but I wouldn't recommend using it as an in car speakerphone as its skill-set lies elsewhere. To be honest I wouldn't use it as a Bluetooth with the feature simply there so you don't miss phone calls when in use, much like a contingency plan.

Whether you're connected via Bluetooth or plugged in via auxiliary (3.5mm), this candy bar speaker produces sound with such low-end volume that it literally dances across different surfaces. Whereas other speakers cop out on bass, pumping out sounds with limited range, the FoxL does a good job at catering to deeper tones.

Surprisingly it features a dedicated 3.5mm out so you can connect it to an external woofer.

Unfortunately all compact speakers make some sacrifice in order to accommodate chic proportions, and the FoxL's is in the treble. On some occasions the speaker would slightly distort, shattering its faultless image. In its defence, distorted audio was the by-product of maxed-out volume and it could be hedged by dropping the levels down a notch or two.

Bass heavy genres perform particularly well on this speaker, with it shining when it comes to mellow tunes, but if you're playing rock or metal, which are characterised by dense high notes, its performance will underwhelm.

The speaker's skidding is a bit of a nuisance but it can be kept grounded by using a sticky matt. The effect intermittently occurs and is instigated by volume, genre and above all, the surface it's sitting on.

Also included in the pack is a lanyard, pouch, a gold-plated auxiliary cable, a mini-usb cable and a mains charger with various travel adaptors. It's a well-equipped product which makes the $280 price tag a little more bearable.

If you're after great sound harnessed by slender proportions, the FoxL speaker deserves consideration. Audiophiles will be impressed by how much sound it tastefully produces; however, I'd do away with the Bluetooth variant and pick up the cheaper "Purist Speaker" model instead.


 

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Pros & Cons

Pros:

Small size; Good low-end sound; good connectivity;

Cons:

Expensive; Poor call handling;