From cubes, spheres, cylinders and cones to tiny unicorns, giant coolers and even cool looking pigs, I’ve seen pretty much every color, shape, and size of Bluetooth speaker. And since Jawbone’s stylish Jambox marked the tipping point for these now ubiquitous audio producers, one thing I’ve learned is not to predetermine them based on their looks. But the funky-looking Mars Pro, which Gravestar sent me to review, really put that theory to the test.

an alien body

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From different angles, Gravestar Mars Pro reminds me:

Yet there is something super cool and stylish in it. I love that it’s a really unique look—even among the Mars Pro line, which has many more fun special Edition. But more than just a novelty, these offbeat looks are integral to the Gravestar brand. They enter a high level of detail into the design of the product along with their thoughtfully themed packaging. By the way, in case you’re wondering, the speaker’s legs (or “claws”) fold in and out, which makes it a little easier to transport—though the rest of the legs don’t move or bend, despite what they might look like.

Buttons and Features

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The Mars Pro comes with a few cables. Its USB-C charging cable—because its connector is at right angles—is a little easier to plug into the underbelly of this 6-inch-wide beast. There’s also a USB-C to one-eighth-inch audio adapter, so you can skip Bluetooth and still feature an auxiliary audio output jack on your laptop, phone, TV, or whatever devices you have on hand.

The speaker’s controls blend so subtly with the joints, screws, decals, and scoring that define its design schema that it initially took me seconds to figure out where they were. But I eventually noticed the small power button on the back, in the middle, surrounded by dedicated buttons for initiating Bluetooth pairing and adjusting RGB lighting modes. During playback, pressing the dual-function power button pauses and plays music. But by far the best control is the touch-sensitive volume slider. You can either tap and slide the column of white dashes representing the volume level back (loud) or forward (quiet), or tap where you want. To the concern of our neighbors, my kids have had a lot of fun playing with volumes like this.

how does it feel

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Anyone drawn to this stylistically creepy speaker will certainly be first attracted by its looks, but that doesn’t mean it lacks in audio quality. As a party speaker, it’s got a lot of thump and volume. But I was really impressed by how it played out a variety of musical styles. Although it particularly favors the lower end, it’s definitely less messy there and more crisp on the high end than I thought it would be. In fact, I highly recommend it for its bass-leaning but well-defined sound. If you love listening to it (and you love the other-worldly presence of the speaker), you’ll probably be fascinated by one of these. Or two, since you can pair them in true wireless stereo.

RGB

Serious gamers may be disappointed that there isn’t an app that lets them choose a very specific color from among the millions, but the GravaStar Mars Pro’s six colors (bright green, magenta, red, light blue, dark blue, dark blue, green, blue, red, blue, blue, and blue) orange yellow) looks good. For me. Tapping the lighting button once manually moves to the next color, and double-tapping it activates a mode that continuously cycles through all the colors. I like that it’s not just a single colored light but an integrated array for cheap effect. This includes a light on the back of the speaker’s grille and on its face, sides and legs, as well as battery and Bluetooth connection indicators, which stay on until the speaker is powered on.

Should you buy the Gravestar Mars Pro Speakers?

It seems like a great addition to a gaming setup, especially considering the RGB effect and the ability to pair in stereo. Not that it’s too big, heavy, or fragile, but I’d use it as a portable speaker around the house. There are other way more compact and travel-friendly speakers out there.

If you’re digging the vibe of Mars but want to fill a tiny space with sound, I can attest that Gravestar’s Venus The line is also very good. Significantly smaller (maybe half the diameter) and less expensive but still with a lot of style, there are six RGB light colors for the size of the Venus and great sound quality and volume. Besides, it’s pretty much the matter that Mars talks to you about. Some special editions run about 70 percent longer than the Mars Pro Black model I tested. But they are, dare I say, more than just speakers, maybe even collectibles, as well as being great room-rocking party speakers.

Buy at Gravestar for $189.95.

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