The BenQ treVolo S portable – a Bluetooth speaker with some very clever tricks

We’ve all seen Bluetooth speakers before, we’ve even had a bluetooth wireless headphone or two, but have you ever had one of those days when you are politely minding your own business when the future comes through the letterbox? I’m talking about the actual future, a product that flashes it’s presence so brightly that this is where things are going that it’s impossible to ignore? Well brace yourselves as I introduce you to the BenQ treVolo S Portable Electrostatic wireless Bluetooth Speaker.

BenQ was good enough to send me through the treVolo S so I could take a look at this portable little box of tricks and from the off I have to say that I was impressed. If you’ve never heard of an electrostatic speaker let me blow your mind for a minute; imagine a speaker that is about half a centimeter thick that’s hanging on the wall like a picture and filling the room with bright, clear sound with almost no distortion. A speaker that invisibly hangs on the wall but sounds amazing? Like I said, welcome to the future my friends.

BenQ _Trevolo _S_1
This is not my photo, but is much better than mine but you can still admire the way the white version of the treVolo S matches effortless with the not-my picture frames

BenQ has taken that technology and shrunk it down to a portable size, and jammed in dual 12W woofers, dual amplifiers, and dual vibrating diaphragms.  In the face of all temptation, BenQ are using those amps to move away from the tactics of most current Bluetooth speakers which sell volume and bass, to focus on a more balanced sound with prestigious audiophile technology-electrostatic diaphragm speaker technology in this segment. Our newly designed treVolo S, world’s smallest Electrostatic Bluetooth Speaker, drives the engineering limit to a new boundary that comprises high sound quality and portability.

BenQ _Trevolo _S_3
This is my picture, you can see that I used a shelf instead of a coffee table. You be the judge of whose picture shows more class

The added extra gubbins that have been squeezed into the tiny box gives the unit a pleasing weight which on the one hand means that the quality of the low end is really well maintained but does push the limit of it’s ‘portable’ claim. Luckily the electrostatic technology that gives the treVolo S it’s distinctive flappy ears (that has led The Child to brand it ‘The Elephant Speaker’), mean that the sound doesn’t have to compromise.

BenQ _Trevolo _S_2
Another photo courtesy of BenQ, this time we can admire how the treVolo S is perfect for those afternoon tea rave sessions

But we haven’t exhausted the treVolo S list of features yet, because unfortunately bringing the size down has meant that there had to be some limitation in quality, the sound, while it doesn’t distort at the upper end, it doesn’t quite give the depth that I was poised to expect. It’s not tinny but there is a noticeable difference when I play the same track through the treVolo S and my trusty Sonos PLAY:1. Without doubt, the Sonos gives a more rounded and immersive experience but then the treVolo S has a trump card up it’s sleeve.

BenQ _Trevolo _S_5
Not too many buttons which is good to see – 3D mode is enabled through the Mode button but why it isn’t on by default is strange because it’s one of the best things about it!

When you whack on the 3D mode, the treVolo S springs into life, the marketing review notes tell me that “Without altering the original soundwaves, treVolo S’s proprietary non-distorted 3D mode significantly increases the dimensions of the listening space, taking the audio scene to a three-dimensional level.” Did you understand that? No, me neither. What I can tell you though is that it dramatically narrows the gap and really brings BenQ up a notch, couple that with a lossless music format or connect it up to a telly and you’ll bring a surprising amount of power to the experience. I suspect it won’t be your immediate default music player but you won’t be disappointed with what you’ve got while you are using it.

There you have it, what did I think of the BenQ trevolo S? Well, I thought it was pretty aces to be honest, it is expensive (currently £150 on Amazon) for a bluetooth speaker but the extras that it gives you makes it all a great little package. It’s chargeable, portable and flexible; the sound is good but get that 3D mode on and it becomes something you can really relax into – and did I mention that you are buying yourself part of what I’m convinced will become the future of music?! Let me know if you have a treVolo S or are thinking of getting yourself one, I would love to hear what you think.

 

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