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CNET First Look
Riva Turbo X: This Bluetooth speaker goes to 11The Turbo X isn't a bargain at $350, but it's one of the loudest and best-sounding compact Bluetooth speakers available.
[music] I'm David Carnoy from cnet.com and this is the turbo x, a higher end bluetooth speaker from new comer Riva Audio. It's one of the best sounding portable speakers currently on the market although it's pretty pricey at #350. The speakers design is elegant and straight forward. But from the outside anyway it doesn't scream premium speaker. That said it is splash proof thanks to a hidden rubber gasket on the bottom of the speaker that you can pull off and use to cover the ports on the back of the speaker. It also has some nice bonus extras. There's a proximity sensor that allows you to wave your hand over the speaker and have the sense touch buttons on top of the speaker light up, which comes in handy at night. And a USB port on the back allows you to charge your smartphone or tablet. Additionally the speaker's equipped with a high-grade speakerphone. It works well, and there's App Deck streaming for devices that support this feature. App Decks is supposed to make Bluetooth streaming sound better, but it's debatable how much of an impact it makes, but more and more wireless speakers are offering it. While fairly compact, this speaker weighs in at 3.5 pounds or 1.6 kg. It's got a lot inside it's chassi and folks from Riva tell its 45 watts of power and combination three full range proprietary drivers plus four custom dual piston base radiators. Battery life is rated at an impressive 26 hours. While the speak doesn't come with a carrying case, you can buy an optional for $30. The speaker has a fairly neutral, well balanced sound profile, and as I said, it sounds really good for what it is, and shines compared to the competition at higher volumes. Most compact bluetooth speakers perform well at lower and mid-level volumes, but when you crank things up, the speaker strains itself to keep from distorting, and certain frequencies, particularly the base Tend to get clipped. Not so with the Turbo X. It can play very loud and manage to sound full and retain good definition with minimal distortion, even when you crank it to 11. That's right, in a nod to Spinal Tap you can use Riva's free ground control app for iOS and Android to engage the turbo mode And take the volume to 11, giving you an additional seven decibels of sound. It's a bit of a gimmick but, hey, the Bluetooth speaker market is crowded, and at least the Riva manages to stand out from the pack a bit. I just wish it cost a little less. I'm David Carnoy. That's the Riva Turbo X. Thanks for watching. [MUSIC]