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If Jony Ive designed a Bluetooth speaker, it might look like this. Then again, if Jony Ive designed a soup can, it might look like this. The HiddenRadio blends into its surroundings, with no visible buttons or controls. You twist it on its sturdy base to reveal the speaker, and control the volume the same way: more speaker showing means louder music, and you just twist it all the way closed to turn it off. It connects via Bluetooth 2.1 or a hidden aux-in jack, and we got the best results leaving the audio device at around 80 percent volume, and then fine-adjusting by twisting the HiddenRadio.
It gets loud, filling a room better than other portable Bluetooth speakers we’ve tested, but some types of music sounded better than others turned all the way up. Rock and hip-hop sounded the best, with present but not overpowering bass. The high end of our classical music sounded a little harsh and blown out, but backing off the volume helped. Plus, you can connect the included cable antenna to pull in FM radio, but the buttons to change stations are on the bottom of the unit, so that’s a little inconvenient. The rechargeable lithium-ion battery is supposed to last 15 hours on a charge, and we got that easily.
The bottom line. It looks great, at less than a pound it’s easy to tote along, and we love how the sound stays the same from all sides thanks to the round design.
Audio device with Bluetooth or a headphone jack.
Includes an antenna for listening to FM radio. Cool design. Gets pretty loud. Music sounds the same from all angles.
Some music types sound a little harsh at high volumes, like classical.