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CNET First Look
Creative Labs ZiiSound D5Though the price of the Creative ZiiSound D5 Bluetooth speaker is a bit steep, its simple, attractive design and decent sound make it recommendable.
[ music ] ^M00:00:03 >> I'm David Carnoy, and I'm here with the Creative Labs ZiiSound D5 Bluetooth speaker. The speaker is geared towards iPods and iPhones. It comes with a little Bluetooth dongle that stows in the speaker itself. You use that dongle to both go wireless and then charge your device when it's docked. This is a compact speaker designed it sit on shelves. It has a nice design. We weren't in love with the cloth covering on top; we felt it might fray a little bit. You want to keep this one away from your cat. It does have a little bit of heft to it; it's around 8.4 pounds and seems well built. What's interesting about it is you can stream wirelessly with any Bluetooth phone directly to the speaker. You have that 30 foot range to deal with. You can also attach the dongle to iPods that don't support Bluetooth, or you can attach the dongle to your iPod Touch or iPhone. It makes it a little bit easier to pair with it. You just press a little button on the dongle itself, and you will pair, so you don't have to go through your iPhone or iPod Touches Bluetooth connection. To control the volume there's a volume control on top of the device that's touch sensitive. And what we did was we set it to around 85% and used the volume control on our iPhone and iPod Touch to control the volume. That's what we recommend for this. There's also an axillary input on the back, so you can connect other audio devices with an optional cable. But aside from the power button and the volume control there really aren't any other buttons on this speaker. In terms of sound for a small Bluetooth speaker, this actually sounds pretty good. There's a decent amount of bass and good clarity. Really the only major quibble we had with the speaker is that it is a tad expensive at $300. We'd like to see it around $250, maybe even closer to $200 if possible. Creative Labs also has a step down D200 model. This one sounds a little bit better, but that model only retails for $150. It's not so iPod, iPhone centric; it is just a Bluetooth speaker. But that's probably a better deal. But this is still a recommendable model if you can afford it. I'm David Carnoy, and that's Creative Labs ZiiSound D5 Bluetooth speaker. ^M00:02:07 [ music ] ^E00:02:10