Most people think of portable speakers as cheap Bluetooth speakers that fit in a park bag. Devialet Mania has a different goal.
The French luxury speaker producer aspires to create the best-sounding portable speaker. Today, Devialet Mania costs $790.
The Devialet Mania is debuting. It ends a long procedure. “We started with amps, then the Phantom speakers, the Gemini earphones, and the Dione soundbar,” Devialet CEO Franck Lebouchard said. “This portable speaker opens new markets.”
Devialet’s four-year-old portable speaker idea was simple. Devialet desired a hi-fi battery-powered speaker.
Hi-fi signifies several things. It implies high-quality sound. Lebouchard claimed hi-fi denotes stereo sound or stereo rendering.
Devialet Mania is a spherical speaker. The device has a handle on top for carrying.
Its 2.3kg weight prevents you from carrying it to the park (around 5 pounds). It’s meant for housework, but you can take it on vacation.
The two “push-push” woofers that prevent vibrations will be the first thing you notice when playing music.
Four full-range speakers face different directions at the top. When you put the Devialet Mania on a table in the middle of the room, the full-range speakers alternately transmit the left and right channels (clockwise: left, right, left, right).
Thus, wherever you sit, you experience stereo music from the two full-range speakers in front of you.
Devices have accelerometers and four microphones. Devialet Mania detects relocation. Its microphones also identify walls.
Devialet Mania determines the device’s front and back. The device’s left and right full-range speakers play the left and right channels, respectively.
Apple’s initial HomePod sold on its microphones’ dynamic sound adaptation. Devialet’s SAM technology prioritizes sound quality (Speaker Active Matching).
“We mix portability, hi-fi, and automatic calibration,” Lebouchard added.
Devialet’s app controls the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth Devialet Mania. Wi-Fi supports AirPlay 2 and Spotify Connect. Battery life is 10 hours at typical volume.
Built-in buttons pause music, alter volume, activate Bluetooth, and more. One USB-C port charges the gadget.
For the first time, Devialet Mania has microphones and integrates Amazon Alexa. A slider near the USB-C port disables the feature.
The $990 (€990) “Opéra de Paris” model contains gold-plated finishes and an optional docking station. The base can be purchased separately.
“If we want to become a worldwide player in the audio sector, we need a product in each key segment of the audio market—wireless earbuds, soundbars, and portable speakers,” Lebouchard said. He claims portable speakers and soundbars sell €6 billion annually.
In January 2021, Devialet introduced a matte Phantom speaker update with new components. Lebouchard said Phantom gets major updates every two years.
The Expert Pro, the company’s first amplifier, hasn’t been updated recently.
Amps aren’t a priority because the market is small. However, audiophiles value the Expert. “We want to build the best amplifier in the world because we can’t say we’re the best sound company without offering the best amplifier,” Lebouchard said. Thus, “keep tuned.”
Devialet has released wireless earbuds, a soundbar, and a portable speaker in the past 18 months. Lebouchard told me the lineup is lacking headphones.
Devialet headphones are unlikely because the corporation is unsure if it would be strategic. Lebouchard said consumers switched from headphones to wireless earbuds outside.