Creative Sound Blaster Roar: Portable NFC Bluetooth Wireless Speaker with aptX/AAC. 5 Drivers, Built-in Subwoofer
Creative Sound Blaster Roar is full of functionality. I don’t think I own another Bluetooth speaker that can do more than this one can, but it’s not just a gimmicky speaker. The sound lives up to Creative Labs expectations. Tera Bass throws in bass where I never knew it existed. Roar boosts music over the chatter of a crowd and fills the room. I love Roar. Music bounces off the walls. Fullness without hurt-my-ears loud. How’d they do that? It’s a feast for my ears and they leave satisfied.
An AC adapter is provided, but the Sound Blaster Roar can also be charged via micro USB cable.
I think my phone might be finicky, but this is one of the few devices where NFC actually works on my HTC One. Connection is so quick and easy, and I don’t even have to worry about reconnection. It reconnects automatically. Of course, there is an option to use Bluetooth pairing, if you don’t have NFC.
Bluetooth range is excellent, comparable to my best Bluetooth devices. I can go two rooms away and still have a great connection.
AS A POWER BANK
Yes, I can use this speaker to charge my devices. It’s far too big to regularly use as a power bank. I’m not going to be carrying it around with me. Instead, I use it when I want to charge my phone while playing music. It fully charged my phone and still had power left for music.
MICRO SD CARD
I don’t need a smartphone to use this speaker. I can use a micro SD card instead.
With the card, I can record music that’s playing on the speaker, or I can turn the mic on and record myself speaking. Loop playback or shuffle the music are both options.
This function is only available if we use the micro SD card. We have a choice of 15 or 30 minutes and the music slowly fades out so we are not jolted out of sleep by the sudden quietness.
To record, we need to insert a micro SD card. Record with either the microphone on or off, and play the result right back without needing to insert the card into the PC.
The alarm sounds more like a fire truck saying “get out of my way,” rather than a panic alarm screaming “save me!”
This isn’t an alarm clock. It’s just an alarm that sounds when we press a button. I’m not sure when I’d ever need it.
Phone calls come through loud and clearly. There is a minor echo on the caller’s end. My daughter thought it was louder than I did when we tested the speaker. We were able to hold a conversation without too much difficulty, though.
The drawbacks have mainly to do with the controls. Only power, volume, NFC and telephone are available on top of the speaker. Everything else is on the back. If I want to boost the bass, I need to turn it around. If I need to advance the music, I need to turn it around. If I want to press the play button, I need to turn it around. If I want to reach the bass button, I need to turn it around.
Another problem is some functions are not intuitive. For instance, sleep mode requires we first set the speaker to loop the music and then press and hold the record play button until it beeps once (15 minutes) or twice (30 minutes). It also requires the use of a micro SD card. No card, no sleep.
And who knew that pressing the alarm button when the alarm switch is off will trigger the bass function? Alarm = bass?
This is a hefty speaker about the size of a fat book that speaks to quality. Functionality is incomparable, sound does not disappoint; but controls are a little inconvenient and not entirely intuitive.
This product was provided for review by Creative Labs.