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Wireless & Bluetooth Speakers

Muzen Audio's retro-inspired speakers will impress your inner hipster

The Muzen OTR Bluetooth speaker has vintage looks and a built-in radio.

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The Muzen OTR Metal comes with leather straps for carrying around and a cool box packaging. 

Aloysius Low/CNET

Bluetooth speakers are a dime a dozen these days, but Chinese brand Muzen Audio has added something extra to help its OTR speaker stand out: Radio.

The Muzen OTR (or "On The Road") series comes in a retro-inspired wood or metal finish with tiny analog gold dials. And unlike many other speakers, it can pick up radio broadcasts. The throwback design and unusual feature means you'll spend longer fiddling with it than you normally would with a speaker.

I hardly listen to the radio -- Spotify has long filled in that niche -- but I occasionally switch it on in the car to catch the news while I'm driving. I think there's something about the experience of turning the dial to find a radio station that's missing from digital tuners, but perhaps I'm getting old and nostalgic.

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The Muzen OTR Metal comes with analog dials.

Aloysius Low/CNET

Apart from the radio playback, the Muzen OTR is a decent Bluetooth speaker, capable of reaching high volume without losing clarity. It doesn't pack much bass, but it's boomy enough that I didn't find it lacking in most of the songs I tested on the speaker. 

Personally, I prefer the wood OTR model over the metal, as the shiny finish can be a fingerprint magnet. But the metal model's vintage looks are more eye-catching. The speaker comes in a cool custom box with removable leather straps you can use to carry it around. 

With a battery life of around 10 hours, you'll have plenty of fun before you need to recharge the speaker via micro-USB. The Muzen OTR is currently on sale in China, the US, France, Germany and the Netherlands. It launches this week in Singapore. 

The OTR Metal retails for $135 or S$139 (about £80 or AU$145) while the OTR Wood goes for $123 or S$129. Prices may differ in your region, so be sure to check your local stores for updated pricing.

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The Muzen OTR Wood has a very nice finish and feel that I quite liked.

Aloysius Low/CNET