Testing & Results
Clearly, one of the main areas of focus during the testing phase of the Microlab MD212 was the quality of the speaker’s audio. Keep in mind that the results are subjective. Anyway, listening to streaming audio through apps like Pandora and listeing to music downloaded on the paired device was one portion of the testing. Another was utilizing it while watching TV shows and movies streamed from Netflix and stored on the paired device. During these phases, the tests were performed both while in Bluetooth mode and while connected via auxiliary cable. The testing phase lasted for approximately 12 days while paired with a variety of devices, which included a Motorola Razr Maxx, an Asus Memopad HD, a Samsung Galaxy Tab 2, and an Apple iPod Touch.
What has become standard procedure during my battery testing phase, I ignored the manufacturer’s recommendation that the device be fully charged before putting it to work. That initial session consisted of streaming music through the app Tunein for around three hours. I would, however, recommend that you follow Microlab’s instructions and fully charge the Microlab MD312 before use.
On Microlab’s website, it states that the, “MD312 comes with one 1000 mAh rechargeable battery that stands for up to 4 hours.” That is a very conservative estimate, considering that I listed to music through this speaker connect via Bluetooth for over six hours. The BL-5C 1000 mAh 3.7V rechargeable battery is obviously far more capable than the credit given to it by Microlab. In any event, my expectations in this area were far exceeded. In addition, battery replacements can be acquired through Amazon.
Pairing the Microlab MD312 with all of the aforementioned devices was a breeze. The process was very simple; turn the speaker on, put the other device in searching for device mode, and the connection was almost immediate. I only had one situation that resulted in some frustration while pairing and it was my fault. After turning the MD312 on, I didn’t realize that it immediately paired with a device on another floor, so pairing with the desired device was not working. Once I ran upstairs and turned Bluetooth off on the other device, it paired right up with the device I wanted to use.
The Bluetooth range of the Microlab MD312 is very good. As I just stated, I turned the speaker on, and it connected with a device on another floor of the house. In fact, I walked all the way around the house (three floors, 3800 sq. ft.) with a device in hand, leaving the speaker stationary. At no time did I lose a connection.
Obviously, one of the main reasons for acquiring a portable Bluetooth speaker is for its sound quality. The Microlab MD312 delivers audio quality that is far beyond its price range. The bass is deep and rich, and the treble is clear and crisp. The best results were when it was placed on the floor near a wall, similar to the placement of a subwoofer. It still sounded great when standing alone on the kitchen island, but the bass is far more apparent on the floor. The bottom line regarding sound quality is that you will have to search high and low in order to find a better sounding Bluetooth portable speaker at this price range.