Review: BluNote Bluetooth Speaker rocks our socks off

Skeptical of Bluetooth altogether, we just got schooled in what a portable Bluetooth speaker can do. The Spracht AURA BluNote Bluetooth Speaker is about the size of two palms next to each other, but sounds like it's a whole lot bigger. You can hook it up to any cellphone or music player that supports the Advanced Audio Distribution Profile (A2DP), so we tested it on our iPhone 3GS.

Pairing was just as easy as pushing a button for a couple of seconds, and the BluNote instantly recognized our iPhone. From then on, it was smooth sailing, where the little speaker system deftly played songs wirelessly from the iPhone, sounding remarkably good for such a tiny package. There was even an impressive amount of bass coming out of the minuscule drivers.

Suddenly, a phone call came in. After the BluNote automatically lowered the music volume, we answered the call by pushing a button on top, and it quickly went into speakerphone mode. It works just as well as any good speakerphone, and as is typical, you need to be 2 to 3 feet away for it to sound good. But when you're close enough, it really works. It also senses when you initiate a call on your iPhone, switching over to speakerphone mode. I made a phone call to a persnickety friend who didn't even notice I was using a speakerphone. It's that good.

AURA thought of everything when they were designing the BluNote, adorning it with gorgeous design, surprising sound, bass boost and stereo widening that doesn't sound fake, and its thoughtful designers even included four AA batteries to complement its AC adapter. And if you want to avoid Bluetooth altogether, there's a standard 3.5mm line input in the back, with a cable provided. Nice. It's an excellent product that's well worth its $99 price.