Bang & Olufsen BeoPlay S3 Review
To say that there are plenty of bluetooth speaker options is an understatement. They pretty much all look and function the same. If you look hard enough though, you'll find some that are really nicely designed and are unique enough to make you fall in love. The BeoPlay S3 is one of those rare speakers. Its designed by Bang & Olufsen, a 90 year old Danish audio company. Since they are from the land of beautiful design, it's no surprise that the S3 is a looker. It's one of 21 different speakers and headphones available from B&O Play (a division of Bang & Olufsen Group).
Wireless & Stationary
Traditionally, Bluetooth speakers are really convenient thanks to their portability. Though, you may not want a mobile speaker, or you might already have a portable speaker. You could desire something that stays put, connects via bluetooth, and doesn't run off a battery. Which is where the BeoPlay S3 comes in. It's a compact loud speaker that lives on a table or shelf. Wireless doesn't just stop at connecting a device to play music. You can connect two S3's without wires. They automatically transition to stereo speakers.
A constant across most of speaker brands is their basic shape. They're all rectangular, #boring. If they aren’t rectangular, they’re either circular or cylindrical shaped.
However, the designers at B&O took a different approach. They made the S3 a dodecahedron.
A dodecahedron which is a polyhedron having 12 faces, 20 polyhedron vertices, and 30 polyhedron edges. It's certainly not a box. It's unique and bold in a way. Yes, your inner interior designer is probably saying, how the heck is that not an eye sore? That sounds ugly. It's not, I promise. The edges are soft and it doesn't stand out at all. It blends in, actually. Aside from its shape, the speaker housing is very well built, too. It has enough heft to not feel like it’s cheap. The plastic it's made of has a wonderful sublet finish.
When it comes to sound the S3 delivers really amazing, quality audio for something so compact. It houses 2 35 class D amplifiers, combined 240 watt peak power, 3⁄4 inch tweeter, and 4 inch woofer. Put on some music and turn up the volume, you will be surprised at how well it sounds and how loud it can get.
Hardware + Software
When you buy an S3 and get the BeoPlay app, you'll be annoyed at all the other speaker brands for not having an app that’s even half as cool. The Beoplay app lets you tweak how your music sounds. It's essentially an equalizer app, but way more fun. It's not complicated like most equalizers and doesn't give you a laundry list of presets that sound like crap. You have a four-quadrant grid and you can drag button anywhere on the grid. You are given control of how you want your music to sound. Yes, music streaming apps have their own equalizer settings you can use. But let’s be honest, how often do you use them? And are they as pretty as this? I think not.