X-Mini is among the first brands to start the portable wireless speaker trend. In 2008, X-Mini launched the Capsule Speaker which earned the company several awards. The Capsule Speaker was widely acclaimed for its sound quality and performance that belied its size. At $39, it was also one of the most affordable; compact speakers money could buy. Since then, X-Mini went on to launch many portable and great sounding speakers. Today, however, we will take a look at the smallest speaker from the X-Mini lineup, the X-Mini Nano-X.
The X-Mini Nano-X is the most compact Bluetooth speaker I’ve come across. The speaker is as small as an iPhone charger, and it can fit in tiniest of places with ease. The speaker is also very affordable at just Rs. 1,200. However, even at that price, the X-Mini Nano-X faces tough competition from a plethora of speakers such as the JBL Go and the Philips BT50G. Let us now take a detailed look at the speaker.
Design & Build Quality
As mentioned earlier, the X-Mini Nano-X is very compact. The speaker has a cylindrical shape and a metal body. The top of the speaker has a mesh opening for sound output, while the power button is at the bottom. The button at the bottom doubles up as a remote camera shutter, which I think is a handy feature. Another very useful feature is a lanyard ring which has a dummy male 3.5mm audio connector. This can be connected to any female 3.5mm audio jack for easy carrying of the speaker. For example, you can connect the lanyard ring to the 3.5mm audio jack of your smartphone.
The speaker is solidly built and feels premium. I have had no problem in carrying the speaker in the pocket thanks to its compact design. I also drop tested the speaker from a height of 3 feet, and it survived without any dent on it.
The X-Mini Nano-X uses a 33mm driver that works at 4 ohms impedance. The sound from the speaker lacks bass, and the high frequencies distort at full volume. The bass can only be heard when the speaker is next to you. Even if you are 3 feet away from the speaker, the bass is almost non-existent. However, for something the size of the Nano-X, the fact that it manages to produce *some* bass is praiseworthy. However, I would prefer a slightly larger speaker than listen to songs with almost no bass. The mid frequencies sound fine, and therefore the vocals are clear.
The speaker has a rated sound output power of 2W, and it is surprisingly loud for its size. The speaker can easily fill a 100 square feet room with enough sound but go any further than that, and you can immediately find that the sound output is inadequate. The speaker is meant to be portable, and chances are people will mostly use it for outdoor listening. Outdoors being usually noisy in India, the sound from the Nano-X will be insufficient.
Comparing the X-Mini Nano-X with the JBL Go, the latter has far better depth in its sound and also higher volume levels. That being said, if size matters to you, the Nano-X is your only option. However, if you do not mind a slightly larger speaker, you have tons of speakers to choose from that sound significantly better than the X-Mini Nano-X.
Battery Backup & Charging Time
The X-Mini Nano-X packs a 300mAh battery, and the company promises a battery backup of six hours. The company, however, did not specify the volume levels at which the X-Mini lasts that long. In my usage, the speaker usually lasted for around four hours while I was listening at 50% volume. On the Nano-X, 50% is the lowest volume level you would want to go. Going below that is as good as listening from a smartphone speaker. Increasing the volume level to full brings down the battery life to a mere 2.5 hours.
The speaker has a microUSB port on the side for charging, and according to X-Mini, the speaker should charge in 2.5 hours. However, the speaker only took 2 hours to charge from 0 to 100%.
Connectivity & Extra Features
The X-Mini Nano-X works on Bluetooth v4.1 and supports A2DP, AVRCP, and HFP profiles. The speaker has a range of 10 meters which is standard for most affordable wireless speakers out there. The speaker also has a microphone which means you can take calls. The microphone works just fine but only when the speaker is within two feet range from you.
The speaker connects to Android, iOS, and Mac devices without any issues. I also did not come across any connection drops during the review period. As mentioned at the start, the power button at the bottom doubles up as a camera shutter. This button worked fine without any issues during the two weeks that I used the speaker.
The X-Mini Nano-X is one of the most affordable and compact speakers out there. The speaker also has excellent build quality, reliable connectivity, and offers decent battery life as well. However, it does not sound as good as similarly priced speakers and is also not suitable for outdoor usage. If you want an affordable bedside speaker that you can carry anywhere, the Nano-X will not disappoint you, but you have to look elsewhere if you need anything more than that.
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