Pyxis Fun Box (PS200) Review
Design and Construction
The Pyxis Fun Box’s design is reminiscent to that of a smooth flat pebble the size of one’s palm. The prominent gray paintjob goes very well with the speaker’s pebble theme and it has just the right amount of color accents to provide a touch of character to the portable wireless speaker.
It’s compact and lightweight form factor means that you can pretty much take it anywhere you want without having to worry about it taking too much space inside your bag or being cumbersome to bring.
If there’s really no place inside your bag to fit in this small speaker, you can always attach it to one of the straps on your bag thanks to the non-adjustable shoe lace at the top of the speaker. We just wish that CM or the speaker’s manufacturer had added some sort of cable fastener to prevent the speaker from accidently falling because of a loose knot.
The real estate at the front of the speaker is almost entirely occupied by a speaker grille that hides two speakers beneath it. There’s a small cut out on the left side of the speaker grille to make room for the “Pysix” branding, and there are a six (6) LED lights on the right that indicates the battery status and the audio source (TF or Bluetooth).
Speaking of these tiny LEDs, we have a few reservations about it. For one, the light coming from these LEDs is just not powerful enough to see clearly in broad daylight. Next, you can’t see any of these LED indicators unless you look at it straight on.
Lastly, the markings that accompany these LED indicators are too small to be read comfortably even from an arm’s length. I’d love to blame my deteriorating eyesight for not seeing it properly, but other people with better vision also agreed with my sentiments.
Ok enough about these poorly-designed indicators. On the right side of the speaker are four (4) physical buttons for volume adjustment, to activate TF mode, and the last one to enter Bluetooth mode.
The actual buttons are hidden underneath a strip of rubber which has four grooves with a corresponding embossed label for each of the buttons. The grooves make it easier to differentiate the buttons from one another and identify which button you’re actually pressing without having to look at it.
The only gripe that we have is the Fun Box’s button layout as the company combined the volume adjustment function with the Skip Forward and Skip Backward. Short presses on these buttons will increase/decrease the volume while a long press will skip to next song or go back to the previous song.
This means that users will be prone to accidentally changing the current track in the process of adjusting the volume and vice versa. To make matters worse, the speaker lacks media control functions like Play/Pause, rewind and fast forward.
The decision to not include a set of dedicated buttons for these functions is understandable considering that most of these can be done from the audio source (smartphones for example). However, factor in the fact that the speaker supports playing song straight from a microSD card, we think that adding a set of buttons dedicated for media controls is really a must.
Moving on to the other components, we have a pair of USB ports (one MicroUSB and a full-sized USB 2.0 port) tucked underneath a removable rubber flap. In between these two ports is a tiny slot that accepts a MicroSD card.
The microUSB port serves a charging port for the Fun Box. The other USB port allows the speaker to double as a powerbank and transfer some of its juice to another device that charges via USB.
Rounding up the list of external components of the Pyxis Fun Box is a tiny power button at the bottom of the speaker. Apart from its odd location, the power button is too mushy for our taste and doesn’t generate a satisfying feedback when pressed.
Since we’re in this portion of the speaker, it’s also good to note that it seems like keeping the speaker in place was just an afterthought for the manufacturer.
The only thing they did that we can consider as “keeping the speaker stable” (at least on a smooth surface) is to flatten out the bottom section of the speaker. But that’s pretty much it, no set of rubber feet that would’ve prevented it from slipping off the table every so often, or an aptly-sized rubber pad that would’ve also got the job done.
As far as design goes, we think that adding a set of rubber feet would’ve slightly ruined the otherwise clean and minimalist design of the speaker. In short, it’s style over function.
The Pyxis Fun Box, at its loudest, is capable of delivering sound that’s loud enough to fill a small room. That’s no small feat considering that it’s not the largest portable speaker in the lot.
A fair warning though: we noticed that the sound gets a bit distorted when we increased the volume too much. Since there’s really no really indicator of the current volume of the speaker, you’re better off just increasing the volume of the speaker about 10-11 presses from its lowest point and just adjust the volume using your smartphone moving forward.
As far as sound quality goes, the Fun Box isn’t a pushover either. It’s not in the same league as other bigger and pricier portable speakers, but the kind of quality you get from it is definitely worth its asking price.
Unlike most audio gears, the Fun Box isn’t bass-heavy. On the contrary, there’s actually not a lot of low tones coming out of this portable speaker, or at least not forceful enough to make your chest pound whenever a bass-heavy track is on.
The same can pretty much be said for the highs. We were able to pick up faint high notes here and there, but the sense of clarity is noticeably missing which is, in large measure, blamed for the slightly overpowering mids.
The mids, on the other hand, are more pronounced compared to the two aforementioned tunes, probably a tad too much for its own good. It creates a sense that the vocalist of the band is soaking up all the spotlight while the rest of the band members are forced to the dark corner of the stage.
We were able to use the Fun Box as a hands-free accessory to accept calls when our smartphone is synced to it via Bluetooth. According to the people we’ve talked to, the voice quality was acceptable but could be better.
One of the common feedback that we received from them is that we came off nasal-y when we were using the Fun Box, although they also pointed out that there were lesser wind noise during our conversation.
The Pyxis Fun Box sports a non-removable 2600mAh battery that it uses to provide 4-6 hours of continuous music playback (according to its specs sheet) or allow users to charge their other devices via USB.
Because of the battery capacity of most smartphones nowadays, the Fun Box isn’t exactly the best powerbank to use to fully charge your smartphone with its modest 2600mAh battery pack. It can, however, help you get though situations where you’re nowhere near a power outlet and you badly need to charge your device.
As for the battery life, we’re glad to report that the claimed mileage indicated Fun Box’s specs list is true. On a single full charge, we got around 7-8 hours of audio playback when we played songs from a microSD card.
Our mileage dropped to around 5 hours when streamed songs via Bluetooth which is still pretty respectable to say the least.
The Pyxis Fun Box is quite the head-turner thanks to its straightforward design and chic colors that accented its predominantly gray-painted body. Sadly, it didn’t take long for us to notice the minor shortcomings that ruined what is otherwise a well-built wireless speaker.
Some of these design flaws can easily be swept under the rug, but some of it, like the simple fact that it lacks a rubber base to keep it from falling from a table, is just really hard to justify.
Design flaws aside though, the Fun Box still has a lot to offer to users. For one, the sound quality and output we got from is better than most value-oriented speakers in the market. On top of that, users can use what’s left of the speaker’s battery to charge their devices on the go.
For Php1,490, you can probably get a better sounding portable speaker sans the hands-free and powerbank features, or get one with better design but with awful sound quality. The Pyxis Fun Box, on the other hand, has all of these features under its belt, just not the best out there.
What we liked about it:
What we didn’t like about it:
The Pyxis Fun Box is available at Lazada for Php1,490. It comes in three color variants Blue, Lime Green, and Magenta. You can check out the listing on the links provided below.