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SuperTooth Crystal review: SuperTooth Crystal

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The Good The SuperTooth Crystal in-car Bluetooth speakerphone features quality construction with a metal faceplate and a snappy magnetic mounting clip. The Crystal can display its battery level on a paired iPhone's status bar. Simple pairing eliminates the need for a PIN and multipoint allows two phones to be simultaneously connected.

The Bad The placement of the USB charging port means the device can't be charged while it's mounted.

The Bottom Line The SuperTooth Crystal is a simple Bluetooth car speakerphone, relying largely on your smartphone to do the heavy lifting, but it has a few tricks up its sleeve to make it easy to live with.

6.3 Overall
  • Design 7
  • Features 7
  • Performance 5

The SuperTooth Crystal is fairly basic in appearance. The pill-shaped Bluetooth speakerphone's top surface appears to consist of a single black anodized-aluminum panel. It's also shown on SuperTooth's Web site in blue, purple, silver, and white.

Controls consist of one main multifunction button surrounded by a silver ring and four secondary buttons for volume up and down, power, and cancel, which are integrated into the aluminum panel.

Near the Multifunction button is a small slit through which the microphone listens. DSP Echo cancellation and a feature called Double Noise Cancellation are designed to ensure that the recipient of your call hears you as clearly as possible. Although most of the SuperTooth Crystal's faceplate is occupied by a large grille, only about a third of that actually opens up to the speaker. Audio quality is good, but we'll get back to that shortly.

Flipping the unit over reveals its matte black plastic rear panel (always black regardless of faceplate color with the exception of the white model, which is all white) where you'll find the Micro-USB charging port and a rather strong magnet. This odd charging port placement pretty much ensures that you won't be able to charge the SuperTooth Crystal while driving, but with up to 40 hours of talk time or 1,000 hours of standby time from a 3-hour charge, you should be able to manage.

The large magnet connects the speakerphone to its included metal visor clip. This configuration allows the SuperTooth to be swiveled easily (although, as it doesn't have a display to read, the only benefit to properly orienting the device is that you can read the SuperTooth logo type). When leaving the vehicle, it's also easy to turn off the unit and grab it, leaving the clip in place on the visor. Upon returning, simply slap the Crystal in place. I like this setup, because without the clip, the slim SuperTooth Crystal fits rather easily into a pocket.

Setup and pairing
The unit is powered on by pressing the power button, of course. On the first boot, the SuperTooth will go directly into pairing mode, which makes the unit visible for connection in your phone's menu. After a simple four-digit PIN input, the unit makes the connection to your phone and you're ready to call. With phones that support Secure Simple Pairing (SPP), the PIN isn't even a requirement -- just select and go. The unit can be powered off by holding the power button, and on subsequent boots it will automatically seek your paired phone and go straight into Ready mode.

If you'd like to pair additional phones (the SuperTooth Crystal can remember up to eight distinct devices and pair with up to two of them simultaneously), you'll have to power down the unit and hold the power button for a few seconds to reboot into pairing mode.

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