The Deck bluetooth speaker is a product that was born from a new-found partnership between Motorola and Sol Republic, featuring a design to be used with a smartphone or any other devices that includes Bluetooth, the Sol Republic Deck is a speaker that is ready to play any audio at any place.
Featuring a slightly flat design, the Deck has been designed to fit smoothly on a similarly flat surface like a desk or even the pavement, something which you notice as soon as you pick it up thanks to its speakerphone-esk design.
Only weighing 11.5 ounces and shaped into a carryable design, the Deck can easily be slipped into a bag or even a back pocket whilst on the go.
And on top of that I should probably say that this is definitely one of the best looking portable speakers I have ever had to chance to view. Available in yellow, red, blue and black, the Deck is extremely simplistic yet easy to use.
Featuring a couple of volume controls on the top of the speaker alongside the Motorola button which allows you to pause, play, answer calls and more in a click or two, there’s not many controls to think about, only also featuring a switch for the heist, single and pairing mode along with a power button on the side.
And then to finish the design off, on the bottom of the speaker you will find a rubberized foot that stops covers the surface of the device and stops it from moving when playing music.
Pairing with the speaker is also simplistic, as if you have an NFC handset all you need to do is tap your device on the top.
There is however no screen to tell you what’s going on with the speaker, which can sometimes be an annoyance, thankfully Sol Republic have added some voice prompts that will tell you when the Deck is ready to pair, its current mode and even its battery status.
One of the most interesting features about Deck is its Heist mode, which allows you to pair up to five devices with the speaker and play audio from each one of them in succession, all of which can be done by first pairing the speaker and then flicking the switch on the side to the mode, after which the Deck will assign each of the devices a different colour LED to let you know who is taking over your music playback.
And you don’t have to worry about the wrong song playing at your party when using the mode either, as with a simple tap of the Motorola button you can lock playback on a single device of your choosing.
This worked great during our testing, and apart from the slight lag between different devices choosing new songs, the Deck performed well in most situations.
Even cooler of a feature is Deck’s range, allowing users to play audio from up to 300 feet, Deck has an amazingly far field of connection, allowing you to leave it in one room and carry your device anywhere around your house, or even go off and play your game of football.
Alongside which, Deck also has a battery life of around 10 hours (at moderate volume levels) and has even been fitted with both an audio input and an audio output, allowing you to daisy chain devices or even plug-in a bigger speaker whilst at home.
In terms of sound, you will find that the Deck is surprisingly load, however we wouldn’t say that its quality really suits its price tag of nearly £200, designed to primarily sit on a flat surface, it can often be hard to find that sweet spot for full sound projection, however to give a good point, the speaker does provide a great 360 degree surround sound, but only in the right places.
The speaker also features an outdoor mode that will boost the sound played back and tune the audio for better outdoor listening.
All in all the Deck sounds good, but only for some situations, and you can often find that the Deck will lack a full or detailed sound, and can sometimes even sound a little muffled, however for its size the Deck is still an impressive speaker and I have to say that I have almost definitely fallen in love with it.
But given the Deck’s £169.99 price tag, I’m not exactly sure if I would buy it, that said I’m sure it would be perfect for a number of other people, those looking for a speaker that is great to carry around, fills a room with sound, looks great and performs decently should definitely look this way, however if you are someone who is looking for something with a bit better performance at a cheaper price, try out one of its beefier cousins.
Disclosure: Sol Republic sent us a sample of the Deck for review purposes.