Reviewed by Muddy Madam.
Here at the Mud Life HQ, we love gadgets, and so getting to test, and review, this Hive 2+ (it's been upgraded from the original Hive 2, so the '+' is important) wireless speaker from Kitsound was a bonus.
I don't know about you, but I'm clumsy; not just the usual 'Ooops I trip up occasionally', no, I'm the person who has bounced down my stairs, from top to bottom, twice, who fell off an ordinary kerb and twisted my ankle and who drops things pretty regularly. I can't do much about my clumsiness, but I can seek out products that are durable and robust, and the Hive 2+ Wireless Speaker is one of them. It has a sturdy, rugged design that can happily survive a tumble or two (but try not to, as if you do drop it your warranty will be invalidated).
It is Bluetooth compatible, so your smart devices can easily connect, and the majority of non-bluetooth mobiles, tablets, mp3 players and computers can also be played through the line-in connection.
If you are playing through your phone (in wireless mode), and a call comes in, don't worry, the Hive 2 has call handling, so you can talk hands free and then return to your music or podcasts. It also comes with Siri, and Google Now integration, so you can interact with your device directly from the speaker.
I found it pretty easy to connect my phone:
Press the ON button for 2 seconds
The speaker then automatically enters pairing mode
On my phone I searched for new bluetooth devices & selected KS Hive2+
There were 2 beeps, then I was connected
The next time you turn it on, the connection to your phone/devices will happen automatically, indicated by a small blue light on the first button that flashes every 2 seconds.
The official blurb mentions 'two 40 mm active drivers and an immense digital amplifier create 12 watts of sound that manages to deliver warm rich bass notes alongside a controlled midrange and a delicate treble'; now I'm not sure what all that means, but I can testify to the sound being very good, with a pleasant tone, and the volume is loud enough for a pretty large room.
I have used this to listen to podcasts and music in my kitchen, on the beach and in the garden during a barbecue, and because of it's unobtrusive, small design it's easy to carry about, and pretty much fits in anywhere. I love that the Hive 2 also comes with its own velvet feel carry bag, and that it has 12 hours of continuous play time, so it won't conk out just when the party is starting.
The Mud Life was given this one to test, but the question is, would I actually buy one?
Absolutely! There would be no hesitation, as it has been used more than I had ever imagined.
Price: RRP £59.99
Website: www.kitsound.co.uk (NOTE: if you are buying from elsewhere make sure it has the + sign, as the original Hive 2 is still available, but doesn't have all the functions mentioned here)
- Frequency 50Hz-20Hz.
- Size - Height: 6.38cm, Width: 16.8, Depth: 4.85cm.
- Power from USB - USB cable included.
- Batteries - 1 x Li-Ion batteries (included).
- Battery life: 12 hours.
- 2 speakers.
- Compatible with iPod, iPhone and iPad.
- Bluetooth compatible.
- 3.5mm AUX in.
- 12 watts.
- 2 amplifier channels.