Tego Audio’s NOVA Mini portable speaker is quite cute and tiny, but for some it may appear otherworldly. It consists of rounded edges and a circular area at the centre. When the centrepiece is twisted, the main chamber comes up from which the bass sounds.
The bass effect is crisp without any distortion creeping up even in high volume. Whatever be the kind of music being played, the sound effect appears to be crystal clear though the highs aren’t always quite as rich. But with such a tiny speaker, that is to be expected.
Controls for NOVA Mini portable speakers are on their base or what you could call “feet”. On two of the feet you’ll find the volume up and volume down button while on the other foot you have the power button. At the base of the structure you have the 3.5mm input out and the mini-USB port for charging. Beneath the structure you’ll find the cord to connect the speaker to your source. Tucking away the controls intuitively at various ends of the speaker body ensures the overall shape isn’t affected by the controls popping up and interfering with the curves. In the package you get a USB jack for charging the speaker and the headphone or audio jack.
NOVA Mini’s lithium ion battery reportedly stores up to 24 hours of charge. With each audio jack, you can connect a chain of NOVA Mini speakers for greater depth and more punch. However, the short cord to connect your source, which has a length of around 4 inches only, makes it impossible to space the speakers sufficiently far apart to generate a somewhat surround sound experience, or to keep your iPad, iPhone or any other tablet or MP3 player at a sufficient distance. A reasonably long extension cord would really have been useful.
You’ll find NOVA Mini portable speakers in three color combinations – black & chrome highlights, red & black highlights and white & red highlights.
To sum up, Tego Audio’s Chinese-made NOVA Mini portable speakers offer great sound for their size and this would satisfy most. They are also attractively designed and the choice of color combination ensures that you’ll get a NOVA that suits your tastes. The ability to hitch NOVA Mini speakers to one another for a greater effect is also a welcome feature though a longer extension cord would have enabled connecting the speakers at greater length.
However, the price is where things get serious. Tego Audio’s NOVA Mini portable speaker is currently available from the company’s website for a price of around Rs. 2,000 which is much more than some of the other mini portable speakers around. For the price it does have the punch, but that depends on the kind of volume the end user desires. It currently ships in the US with a one-year warranty though it could be soon made available in other countries including India.