Altec Lansing inMotion SoundBlade.

Design, Gadgets, Music, Useful Things by Richard

Altec Lansing released a pretty cool Bluetooth speaker/speakerphone set called the inMotion SoundBlade not too long ago. They sent one down for us to check out and I’ve been playing with it ever since. It contains two 2.5” full-range speakers and Bluetooth connectivity/music control in a very slim and compact package. The SoundBlade is only an inch thick at its thickest point (it tapers to be even thinner around the edges)… seriously, this thing is aptly named. Its one of the slimmest speaker sets I’ve seen, and the size helps it to fit pretty much wherever you want to put it. I found the SoundBlade to be quite easy to set up, requiring only one cable for my use (an AC adapter is included so you can plug it into the wall for power, but you can eliminate the cables completely with 6 AA batteries, and they’ll power it for 24 hours). Also included in the box is a slipcover and a 1/8 inch male-to-male audio cable for the AUX input.

As is the case with every good set of phone compatible speakers, the SoundBlade is shielded so you don’t get that annoying speaker buzz when your phone is too close to it. I’ve tested it with a couple of Bluetooth phones and devices, and it definitely worked great as both a speakerphone (I could hear and be heard from 5-6 feet away just fine) and for streaming music from a Bluetooth device. The sound is pretty good (I didn’t expect amazing clarity and rich sound out of a speaker set this slim, but I was surprised by their quality). The SoundBlade also includes an auxillary port on the back so you can play back audio from any device with a 1/8 inch output (iPod, portable video player, etc). I even used it with the Audioengine AW1s when I reviewed them, to stream music to a different part of the house. Also, since it supports the A2DP Bluetooth protocol, you can use it with all sorts of Bluetooth audio devices, including a laptop. (My MacBook Pro also supports AVRCP, so even the play/pause controls worked, and paused my laptop from the speakers, over Bluetooth. Pretty cool!)

Would you like a SoundBlade of your very own? Stay tuned, we’ll be giving one away very soon! If you can’t wait that long, the SoundBlade is available online for $129.95.


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