Surprisingly accurate and pleasing stereo sound, powerful and personal are all good descriptors of the shirt-pocket size Soundmatters foxL V2.
Selling for about $169 without Bluetooth and $199 for the Bluetooth speakerphone model, at first listen, one must perceive this to be a WOW! experience. Yes, it is that good. Yes, you are going to thank me for this recommendation.
Under 10-ounces and only about 5.6”x2.2”x1.4”, foxL V2 easily fits in a shirt pocket, but I would not recommend it, for fear of dropping it. But it’s the sound that sells this engineering marvel. Then, it is the features.
Designed by physicist and NASA engineer, Dr. Godehard Guenther, foxL V2 is unlike anything in its size I have experienced. It even feels powerful, and not just because it also feels of substantial mass. Befitting such a compact powerhouse, controls are minimal and every part is intended to be as it is. There are no outside frills. On the back are power slider and up/down volume controls, and a flip-out stand with vertical cutout ribs. This arrangement is to allow the bass frequencies from the built-in rechargeable BassBattery to escape. Yes, the bass “module” is part of the rechargeable Lithium Ion battery. They call it a Flatmagic™ acoustic bass radiator. All I know is that it works!
Rich bass is in abundance. A provided waffle cut-like pad, called an anti-skid acoustic mat, is provided and recommended to prevent the unit from walking into harm’s way in use. So powerful is the bass that without the mat, foxL V2 can be seen taking a walk, which can lead to disaster if near a table’s edge, for example.
Set-up was a cinch. (See the operator’s manual.) Mine is the Bluetooth-equipped model. This means that it is both a BT-capable speaker system AND it can act as a BT speakerphone. A built-in microphone is in place to the left of the right speaker mound. Using it with the supplied standard audio cable, foxL should be able to connect to darn near any device, even without Bluetooth. In this configuration, Bluetooth will still operate through your nearby BT-equipped phone.
In operation, music is muted when a call is accepted by answering at the phone OR with the little centrally located button. In practice, this setup makes it ideal as a desktop speaker for BT-connected smartphones. The call comes in, music is muted, NOT stopped, and upon completion of the call, and when the phone is released from its telecom use, the music resumes with the sound ramped up in a pleasing volume run-up.
The sound is better than I have experienced from any small stereo speakers, and the added bass, not overpowering, is so pleasing. I’ve set the volume on source products to high, and adjusted output on foxL V2. This has been a perfect arrangement. I can detect no distortion, even with high sound pressures. Sound from foxL V2 is preferred over built-in sound from most laptops.
A note in the manual indicates that output is reduced once battery power reaches 10% in order to maintain high quality sound without distortion. What a nice feature!
When running on battery power or 3.6V, output is rated at 2W x 2. Running on AC power or USB this 5V source produces 4W x 2. Battery life per charge is rated at up to eight hours. The higher the volume, the greater is the battery drain. OR, use USB or AC power when possible and practical for extended use.
The supplied power adapter comes with a range of international adapters to cover most, if not all, places one could visit. The power adapter onto which these international adapters slot in is rated for 100V to 240V, as well, so there should be no need for a voltage adapter. Also supplied is a neck strap, wrist strap, flimsy soft case and USB cable. Not tested is a built-in connection for external subwoofer.
When in a closed environment such as a conference room or an office, the echo-canceling speakerphone performs quite well. I cannot see it as an appropriate BT speakerphone for an auto environment, however.
FoxL V2 delivers plenty of high-end punch for personal use and is small enough to take along and use anywhere. For anyone interested in personal, portable, stereo sound with or without Bluetooth connectivity, I cannot imagine not being well satisfied with a foxL V2. And what a perfect travel companion!
For those interested in up to 28W of power in a larger, group-size BT stereo speaker, check out the SuperTooth DISCO, reviewed here.