Cambridge Audio Minx Go Speaker Review
For those that like their music on the go...
Cambridge Audio have already had a considerable amount of success with their Minx range of products.We recently reviewed the impressive Minx Xi, a music streaming device which delivered a fantastic combination of build quality, features, performance and price. We have also reviewed Cambridge Audio's previous forays into the growing wireless speaker market - the Minx Air 100 and Air 200. Again we were hugely impressed by that product's audio performance, features and design. The London-based manufacturer seems to have a knack for creating desirable products at a reasonable price without ever compromising the sound quality. Whilst the Minx Air was certainly very good, it was also quite large - important for sound quality but not so useful if you want to use your wireless speaker on the move.Well now Cambridge Audio have the solution - the Minx Go - a wireless speaker that provides portability without compromising on sound quality. It incorporates many of the design features found on the Minx Air but also has a battery that last up to 18 hours. It also includes Bluetooth for easy wireless connection and a five speaker configuration for the optimum sound from its diminutive cabinet. This array includes two titanium tweeters, twin 2-inch woofers and a rear-mounted bass radiator. There's also a powerful digital amplifier, an on-board digital-to-analogue converter and digital signal processing to maintain a consistent performance at any volume. Looks good on paper, let's find out how it sounds...
Design and ConnectionsIn terms of its design, the Minx Go looks quite similar to the Minx Air but is obviously smaller. The Minx Go measures 237mm wide by 123mm high and weighs just over 1kg, making it ideal for those who want to listen to their music on the move. However the cabinet itself has the same solid construction and nicely engineered feel that we have experienced with other Minx products from Cambridge Audio. The cabinet is also acoustically dampened to eliminate vibrations and distortions - even at higher volumes. There's a grey metal grille at the front that can't be removed and along the top is an on/off button and volume controls. The Minx Go itself comes in a choice of black or white - both with a scratch resistant high gloss lacquer finish.
Obviously the Minx Go is primarily designed for a wireless connection and for that reason it includes Bluetooth but there are a few connections at the left rear of the cabinet. There is a socket for the external power supply which can be used to run the Minx Go off the mains or to recharge the internal battery. There is also a USB port which can be used for charging other devices when the Minx Go is connected to the mains. Finally there's a 3.5mm analogue audio jack that can be used to connect smartphones, tablets and other devices directly to the Minx Go if your prefer. There is also a slide out foot at the rear of the cabinet which can be used for greater stability if needed.
The Minx Go's diminutive cabinet hides a wealth of features including a 5 speaker array and acoustical dampening.
FeaturesThe Minx Go is one of those products that is designed for a specific purpose - listening to music wirelessly whilst on the move. So in that sense it doesn't have a huge set of features, but obviously there is Bluetooth so you can pair it with a smartphone, tablet or computer and the Minx Go can remember up to eight devices. There are no specific apps on the Minx Go itself but of course anything you can listen to on your smart device, such as Spotify, Last.fm, Tunein, BBC iPlayer etc., can be listened to via the speaker. In terms of other features there's the 3.5mm jack and USB recharging port previously mentioned and the latest intelligent lithium-ion rechargeable battery. As a result, once fully charged the battery on the Minx Go can last up to 18 hours, depending on the volume, which means it can easily last all day, whilst a handy included travel pouch adds to its portability.
The Minx Go uses a five-speaker array that includes two titanium tweeters and twin two-inch woofers at the front to create a wide and detailed soundstage. At the rear there is also a bass radiator to help create deeper bass and give the little Minx Go more presence than the size of its cabinet would suggest. Cambridge Audio have included a digital amplifier to provide a deceptive amount of power from a speaker that you can comfortably hold in your hand. There is also an on-board digital-to-analogue converter to squeeze the maximum amount of detail from the digital music being streamed to the speaker, whilst Cambridge Audio employ digital signal processing to maintain a consistent performance regardless of the listening volume. Finally acoustical dampening has been employed to eliminate vibrations and distortions, even when listening at high volumes.
Sound QualityThe Minx Go is certainly easy to use, you just hold down the on/off button until the unit turns on and makes a beeping noise. The Minx Go is then discoverable, so you just find it on your device and pair the two. To turn the Minx Go off, you just hold down the on/off button again and you'll hear another beeping noise as it shuts down. That's it and once connected you control everything from your smart device, choosing whether to listen to music on the device itself or stream form any number of other sources. The Bluetooth connection appeared to be very robust, with no drop outs or apparent fall in sound quality when compared to using a wired connection. There may have been a tiny improvement in the audio when using the wired connection but in reality there was nothing in it and the whole point of buying a speaker like the Minx Go is to take advantage of its wireless capabilities.
The quality of sound produced by the Minx Go was genuinely impressive from a cabinet of this size. The five speaker configuration clearly paid dividends with a wide and open soundstage that was capable of filling even a reasonably large room. The combination of the titanium tweeters and 2-inch woofers created a balanced sound that spanned the mid range and high-end well. The rear bass radiator was also delivering the goods, allowing the diminutive Minx Go to have a far greater low end presence than you would expect from a speaker this small. The overall sound was suitably neutral without any obvious coloration or unwanted manipulation at a digital level. Vocals were clear, whilst instruments were well defined, making the Minx Go a pleasure to listen to for extended periods, which given the long battery life is just as well.
The digital amplification, signal processing and acoustic dampening also live up to their billing, allowing the Minx Go play at a surprisingly loud volume without distorting. The result of all this was a sound that had a warm and natural tone, with plenty of detail and clarity and an effective sense of bass supporting the entire sound. When listening to tracks like Amy MacDonald's Spark or Lizzie's Skeepwalking the Minx Go could deliver the up tempo beat with ease whilst never sound harsh or tinny when it came to the female vocals. Slip on a bit of Nick Cave or Tom Waits and the slower tempo and lower frequency vocals were still well rendered, with the sound always retaining a sense of fun without ever seeming aggressive. When it comes to the sound quality on their wireless speakers Cambridge Audio have been on something of a roll and the Minx Go continues that trend with another excellent performance.
Cambridge Audio have been on something of a roll when it comes to the sound quality of their wireless speakers and the Minx Go continues that trend.
- Excellent sound quality
- Well designed and built
- Very long battery life
- Genuinely portable
- Great price
Cambridge Audio Minx Go Speaker ReviewThe Cambridge Audio Minx Go has been conceived as a portable wireless speaker that can deliver in its primary purpose without compromising on sound quality. In that sense the London-based manufacturer has succeeded admirably, delivering a well designed and accomplished wireless speaker that doesn't sacrifice performance for convenience. The design and build quality are excellent, whilst the quick charging and long lasting battery means the Minx Go is ideally suited as a mobile wireless speaker. The size and shape make the cabinet easy to pick up with one hand and yet, despite the diminutive dimensions, Cambridge Audio have managed to cram a lot of audio technology inside.
The five speaker array delivers an impressively wide and detailed soundstage and the rear bass radiator gives the Minx Go greater presence than you would expect. The digital amplifier, signal processing and acoustical dampening mean that it can also go quite loud without distorting. The Bluetooth connection was simple to pair and robust in use, whilst the overall sound quality was excellent, meaning that wherever you're listening to the Minx Go, you don't have to settle for inferior sound quality. The fact that the Cambridge Audio Minx Go is also available for such a reasonable price is just the icing on the cake and if you're looking for a portable wireless speaker it should be at the top of your wish list.
Suggested retail price when reviewed: £99.95
Value For Money9
Our Review Ethos
To comment on what you've read here, click the Discussion tab and post a reply.