Review: Archeer A006 Bluetooth speaker

AVWOO1Listen to some tunes, charge your stuff, and get a little wood with the Archeer Bluetooth speaker.

While diving into Dungeons 3 (Muahahaha!) for a preview/review, I’ve been playing with the Archeer Bluetooth speaker—a speaker with no real ‘name’ and not enough wood puns. I’ll provide a few of the latter.

The Archeer is apparently manufactured by AVWOO, a 20-year-old Chinese company that makes various Bluetooth and wireless audio solutions. The Archeer “Woody” (my name, not theirs) is a Bluetooth speaker and FM radio that houses a small storage bank for charging mobile devices.

Archeer Bluetooth speaker feature highlights and specifications

  • Bluetooth 4.2
  • 3.5mm Line in
  • FM radio
  • USB Charger (Power Bank) w/ 4000mAh capacity
  • Speakers: 2×5 Watts
  • 3.7V rechargeable battery
  • Dimensions: 26cm x 6.6cm x 14.2cm
  • Battery life: 6 hours playback time

The Archeer is simple and attractive; a faux-wood shelf speaker a little smaller than a typical shoe box, with a faux-leather carrying handle. Light and eminently portable, it’s well-suited for use on desks, shelves, or mobile and outdoor use.

Evaluation

The Archeer produces acceptable if unexceptional sound. And while it doesn’t have a lot of bark and you might pine for something with a little more oomph, the A006 is still a suitable solution as a desk or shelf speaker, or a portable speaker for the occasional camping trip or outdoor background music.

However, the Archeer could benefit from a better overall and more functional (human) design. While I don’t have major complaints, I do have a few things to birch about: namely, the placement for media controls, inputs, and outputs are all on top of the unit. This no doubt saves production costs, but placing all the controls and inputs/outputs in one location hinders usability.

Placing the controls on the front of the unit (along with its small LCD display) like a typical receiver would spruce up usability, but admittedly it might make the speaker a bit less attractive. Larger controls would also be appreciated, as would some contrast or backlighting. The small buttons for volume and pause/scan are all black with a black backplane–not the easiest thing to see in low light conditions.

Similarly, the line-in and USB input/output would be better placed away from the controls so connecting cables don’t interfere with using the controls.

The 4000mAh storage bank is good for about 2 full smart phone charges (depending on the phone capacity of course), or just keeping a connected smartphone topped off while it plays music through the speaker. The A006 will also power down to save battery life if left idle for more than a couple minutes.

I found it most useful as an occasional speaker for the kids’ room or around the house, or performing outdoor chores (when I wanted some tunes but didn’t want to wear headphones).

Overall: 7/10

Within the limits of intended usage and at a cost of around $40 on Amazon, the Archeer Woodgrain Bluetooth speaker is a good product, but additional usability refinements could significantly improve it.

 

 

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