About a month ago, we presented our analysis of the Antec AMP SP Zero and now it’s the turn of his older brother, the AMP SP1. As said in the Zero review, the AMP Antec division is relatively new on the market, but the quality of their products is outstanding. Antec has made sure that their audio products are nothing but absolutely excellent.
Back to the topic at hand, the SP1 is a portable speaker with wireless connectivity through Bluetooth and USB. As discussed later, the quality of its materials and construction is very good and it shows from the start.
This device is available in various colors and can be found in online stores between 70 and 80 Euros.
Full information can be found on their website, along with information on where to buy it.
Features and Specifications
As a portable speaker, its strengths are the connectivity, portability and battery life (around 10 hours according to the website). Besides listening to music, you can use it as a hands-free device to answer phone calls, or for video conferences thanks to the incorporated microphone.
It has a small size to be easily carried and features a wireless range of 10 meters.
It just has three buttons, two for volume control and the central third is used to synchronize it with the source device and to answer and hang up calls. The power button, 3.5mm jack port and micro USB port port are on one side.
The SP1 is contained in a plastic box and two pieces of cardboard that lets us see inside and looks like this:
After removing the cardboard, you can find the instruction manual and a couple of brochures along with the USB cable and power cord:
Let’s see now the speaker itself. On the outside it is nothing special, it is quite simple to look at, and its interface is very simple too, at the top it has the microphone and the three control buttons while the right side has the power button and both connectors:
Finally, at the bottom is the logo of AMP and a number of certifications.
Overall its design is excellent, and the hard rubber non-slip surface looks good. We noticed that Antec has carefully detailed its new range of products.
It does not include a charger except for the USB, which is quite weird.
First of all, as recommended in the instruction manual, you must fully charge it first. The Antec SP1 features a lithium-ion battery with a 10-hour battery life.
The power button has a LED that serves as a status indicator. It lights red when the battery is low and white when it is fully charged, and the color alternates between red and white while charging. It blinks while searching for a device to connect to, and stops flashing when the synchronization is made and it’s ready to start playing your music.
To enter search mode you have to press the center button for a few seconds, and it will display the list of the available devices. The second time you do it, it will automatically connect via Bluetooth if it’s enabled on the phone. This button has other functions, like pausing/playing music and answering calls.
We have not tested this with iOS, but at least on Android you can choose if you want the speaker to handle both calls and music or just one of them.
We tested the SP1 in both cases, for calls and music:
It performs appropriately in the frequency spectrum that matters (40Hz-18kHz), and the quality is very good. The rear speaker acts as a subwoofer, which is responsible for the bass, while the front speaker handles the rest. Although we do not have a sound level meter, the volume achieved is quite high, comparable to many desktop speakers. The distortion does not appear to very high nor too noticeable.
In short, for its price and size, it sounds pretty good, and is more than enough to get its job done, which is being used in small parties or gatherings with friends.
Once linked to the speaker, if your phone receives a call you can answer it using the middle button, so it acts as a hands-free.
While its performance while listening and speaking with it isn’t exactly bad, the sound quality is not the same as in the case of the music. If the volume is too high your partner will hear echo.
This is a great product in terms of quality of materials and functionality. If you’re looking for a Bluetooth speaker with a great price-quality ratio that is also rechargeable, the AMP SP1 is undoubtedly one of the best options. Not many other manufacturers are able to create a device with this sound quality at an affordable price (and lets consider Antec does not have much experience in this field).
However, I must say that even if you are not playing anything, when the speaker is plugged you can hear a slight electrical noise (and when doing certain actions with your mobile phone if is linked to the speakers). Not too annoying, but definitely noticeable.
- Good quality-price Ratio
- High-quality materials
- Very easy to use
- Very high volume
- Lack of information on the status of the battery. Including a small LED indicator wouldn’t have hurt.
- Lack of a common wall outlet charger