Devialet, the French audio company best known for its range of eye-catching audio equipment that looks like Daft Punk helmets, is getting into the wearable smart speaker business. Today it announces the Devialet Mania, a battery-powered speaker that retains the company’s signature sci-fi styling, but in a compact form factor that offers 10 hours of battery life at “moderate volumes”.
The Mania contains four full-range drivers and two subwoofers, which according to Devialet offer 360-degree sound. But perhaps even more interesting is how the speaker adjusts its sound profile based on measurements of your listening room taken from its four microphones. For example, place the speaker near a wall and Devialet claims that the speaker’s two rear drivers will adjust their sound to “amplify” the two front drivers.
In terms of connectivity, the speaker supports both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth streaming. Protocols include AirPlay 2 and Spotify Connect, and there’s built-in Alexa for voice commands. It has an IPX4 rating for dust and water resistance, which should mean it will survive a light splash of water, but Devialet doesn’t claim to be protected from solid particles like dust or sand. There is a USB-C port for charging or a docking station available separately.
The Devialet Mania retails today from an eye-watering $790. But if it sounds nearly as good as the company’s recently released soundbar, then that could go some way to justify this hefty premium over other comparable portables. smart speakers. In comparison, Sonos’ portable Roam speaker offers a choice of Alexa or Google Assistant and costs $179.