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[Review + Unboxing] RoyQueen H3500 Bluetooth Speaker

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Ah, remember how I griped so much that the Sony BSP10 went out of stock at Lazada and that they couldn't even get me in touch with the merchant so that I could inquire if it's ever going to be available again?

Looks like I was meant for something better.

I chanced upon the RoyQueen H3500 Bluetooth Speaker on CCP and (as usual) checked it out on other sites to see who sells the cheapest and voila, Lazada wins with a 50 pesos difference haha

TIP: Usually if it's on CCP, it's also on MetroDeal and other group buying sites, and if it's an actual item (not a voucher) it's most likely in Lazada too

So I ordered last Sunday (August 9), got the item this afternoon (August 14), and played a while with it before heading to work.

I WAS IMPRESSED

With such an affordable price of Php 1,720, it's surprisingly feature-packed!

Features


1. Bluetooth and hands-free
2. NFC (Near Fields Communications)
3. SD card playback
4. FM radio (semi-auto scanning: 87.5MHz - 108MHz)
5. Voice guide
6. LED digital display
7. USB soundcard and card reader
8. AUX In
Unboxing
Here's the box:


Apparently I got the 'Upgrade' edition. Well, a box featuring this boy band called 'Upgrade' daw. haynakonamano

Here are the contents:


Just the bare essentials: unit, USB charging cable, and a pretty useless Chinese user manual. I was hoping for an audio cable but it has none but it's okay! :D

Parts and ports
top
The top part contains six buttons with pretty obvious functions.
- Upper: Volume -, Mode, Volume +
- Lower: Previous Track, Pause-Play / On-Off, Next Track


back
The back part has the following:
- AUX In
- MicroSD card slot
- USB charging port
- Light indicator - it blinks blue when it's charging
- Battery slot


bottom
The bottom part has nothing much. Just the "feet" and... ano ba to, vent? XD Nothing going on on the sides as well, so I'll spare ya the pics (as if meron). lol
Experience

Pull the plastic strip before using
Before turning it on, remember to pull out the plastic strip at the battery slot that's tucked between the battery and the flat tab, it says PULL haha. It's gonna keep you from charging the battery. Might I say, I was surprised to see a dry cell batt instead of a Li-Ion block, but no biggie, as long as it's rechargeable! :D

Note that you can also use the speakers without batteries as long as it's hooked to a power source via the USB cable. But this is very limited, I noticed it shuts down when I turn up the volume too much.

Press and hold on the on/off button to power it up. You will be greeted by an audio notification of your current mode, by default: you're on bluetooth mode (the LED screen will read 'bL'). Thank God the audio guide is in english!

Device Pairing

1) Bluetooth

Easy peasy. Just turn on your bluetooth, search for 'H3500' and wait for it to be connected. Audio notif will say, 'Device paired'. :D

2) NFC

Much easier, just turn on your NFC, tap it on the device, specifically near the volume+ button and wait for your device to be paired. I'm such a dummy for thinking NFC is actually capable of delivering audio like bluetooth but it's not. What it does when you tap your phone is call the bluetooth function on. It's not essentially an audio hardware. it just gives you the convenience of not having to fiddle through your bluetooth settings to manually pair your device -- in real life, you only have to do this once (unless you clear your bluetooth cache), so there's not much difference in terms of effort between bluetooth and NFC pairing. Still, NFC rocks okay? :D

When your device is already paired via NFC, you can turn it off already and keep your phone away.

Modes

The M button lets you toggle between different modes. It goes from bluetooth, FM, and Line (Audio In).

1) Bluetooth/Hands free

You can go hands-free from the bluetooth mode. Go call someone and hear their voice loud and clear on your speaker! I was impressed by the quality. One letdown would be the mic, I don't think it has a mic. You'd have to rely on your phone for that, but the audio is a big plus! :D

2) FM

I thoroughly enjoyed this one as I get to easily skim through the channels! It's a great feature, Sony BSP10 doesn't have this and it's a whopping Php 3,500! I feel like such a winner.

3) Line

I tested out a couple of cheap audio cables from CD-R king and true enough, it works. Unfortunately the sound is a bit lower compared to when you pair via bluetooth. If this isn't an issue for you, then good! Otherwise, you're probably better off with wired speakers. I came to the mall earlier to get a cable and sadly every one of those I've tried produced lower volume. Even the branded ones. Even those with three lines on the jack. :(

Battery

I was able to use the gadget for a good 6-8 hours under normal volume before it started crying for juice (sound is becoming grainy). The problem is, I wouldn't know if it's already lowbatt haha. I think the light turns solid blue (not blinking) when it's fully charged. OKAY I WILL CONFIRM haha. Also, I tried searching for the same battery at a hardware store but they have none! This is bigger than AA, which is bigger that AAA, so meron bang A? Batts me. Chos.

That's a rechargeable 2000mAH 3.7V dry cell battery for you. I don't know where to buy spares for this aside from ordering from RoyQueen itself, so if you know a place, ping me!

Verdict

For a cheap bluetooth speaker, it surprisingly delivers well! haha. The design looks elegant, albeit generic for BT speakers. Anyway, I wouldn't care if this was a knockoff of something else, I like how it looks. It also comes in red and blue, but really, black is good. Sound quality is nice, volume is great, it's packed with a lot of features that could ramp up the price but it stayed grounded and affordable! Even the regular price of Php 2,150 doesn't seem much!

Wait, hindi ako masyado maarte sa sound quality. I just want it to be loud enough pero hindi grainy cos mejo bingi na tita nyo. And in that regard, havey sakin to. :)

The RoyQueen H3500 bluetooth speaker is definitely a bang for the buck and is perfect for your regular music needs! It sells at Php 1,720 at Lazada, some 50 pesos cheaper than MetroDeal and CashCashPinoy haha.

Oh, I only noticed now that RoyQueen pretty much has kiosks at most SM Cyberzones. I was surprised to find one at SM Fairview earlier, they said they also have outlets at SM North Edsa and SM Megamall. Yeyy. They sell it at regular price there, Php 2,150. :D Pwede na rin!

Get yours from Lazada to get more discounts :)