Bluetooth speakers were pretty special when they first came out, and convenient when they dropped in size and price. So what makes the Hotshot stand out from a pretty wide and diverse crowd of speakers? The fact that it’s made by Monster. So okay, the last thing anybody cares about is the company name embossed on a speaker. But they should. Monster has a good reputation for making quality products regardless of the retail price tag. So see past its small size (barely 7+ ounces) and small price ($49.95) and focus instead on what gets heard, because that’s the purpose of the SuperStar Hotshot Portable Bluetooth Speaker.
Cranking up the Hotshot’s volume courtesy of the streaming device (‘cuz there’s no buttons) and you’ll get a surprise: the sound’s not thin or all garbled because the speaker can’t handle being pushed. Not to say it’s super loud — it’s not — but no babbling brook you’re sitting next to is going to drown it out (or destroy it either, ‘cuz it’s waterproof). The bass will surprise you too because it’s there and not just hiding in the background barely making its presence known. In other words, what you’re listening to won’t sound like it was filtered through coffee grounds.
Also getting heard is your voice because of an integral microphone (i.e., now it’s a speakerphone). But rather than just hope for the best when a call comes in, Monster builds both noise reduction as well as digital echo cancellation in. This means that it’s not just whoever is on the other end who gets heard; what you’re saying makes sense because it gets through to them cleanly.
Looking on the outside, the Hotshot has physical features to make using it easy — such as an attachable carabiner for clipping onto things and a teardrop-like design that aids in getting the sound out to those listening whether it’s standing or flat on its back. It’s got Bluetooth obviously, but also NFC for a quick tap and pair. And for those with a player sans Bluetooth, there’s a mini-jack input for direct connecting sound via a cable.
Basic black with a black grill or gold or with a blue trim or in basic white — you can make some choices as to color but not about shape because that’s locked in. But looking at the SuperStar Hotshot Portable Bluetooth Speaker isn’t why you’ve charged it up (using USB) in the first place. This can become your durable little go-to speaker when you’re out and about and need tunes to waft through the air and not plunged into your ears.