Minirig Speaker Review & Video

Review Summary:

Surprisingly loud, sturdy and portable enough to take along on trips, the MInirig Speaker is perfect for any music lover who wants to break their tunes out of their headphones and share them. Instant appeal for ultra-portable DJs'!

Speaker
  • Speaker
  • Rating: 4
  • From: Minirig
  • Price: £89
  • Reviewed by:
  • On January 2, 2013
  • Last modified:August 19, 2014
Minirig

The Minirig is a small, wired mono speaker that packs a surprising punch and could be just the thing for auditioning your DJ music on the move.

Review: Minirig Speaker

If you've ever wished you could listen to music from your iPhone, iPad, laptop or even DJ controller without using headphones but equally without plugging in a pair of full-sized speakers, the Minirig Speaker could be just the ticket.

From a small UK company called Pasce, and beautifully made in metal, this is a pro, portable speaker that packs a surprising punch and is jam-packed with features to make it easy and effective to use. Portable music discovery or iOS DJ monitoring was never so much fun! Interested? Read on for our Minirig speaker review to find out if it's for you.

What's in the box

Inside the tubular cardboard box you'll find a canvas-style zipper bag, a couple of leads (USB charging lead and 1/8" TRS to 1/8" TRS minijack lead) and the speaker itself. It's bigger than I was expecting, but it's still obviously a small device, measuring just over 4" (10cm) across.

It has a bit of weight to it, being made in attractive MacBook-style silver metal, with a metal grille bolted down with a dark plastic ring on top. There are four rubber feet, and no controls - just a power input, and two input sockets for your music sources.

Charging and connecting it

You charge it by plugging it in to any USB source, and to turn it on you simply plug an audio lead into it - the small LED on the top then lights to indicate both that it's turned on, and (by its colour) to show you the state of charge. The makers claim nine to 60 hours of play time on an eight-hour charge.

There are two audio inputs - high and low gain. They're meant for listening at different volumes, because there is no actual volume control - you'll be using the built-in volume control on whatever device you choose to use it with.

Sound quality
It sounds great, except when really pushed, when it muddies up a little. Obviously there's no huge amount of bass, but this design does provide more bass than you might expect. Positioning it near a wall or in a corner helps with the bass immensely.

Minirig connections

The centre connection is for the charging cable, and the top and bottom sockets are both inputs, one high, one low gain.

The sound is fuller than you might expect, and despite having a built-in limiter for when you're a bit careless with your input source (maybe the source of the muddiness), the Minirig does produce a fair amount of volume. It's rated at 15W. Overall, the sound quality for such a small device was very good.

The company has engineered it so you can "daisychain" speakers together. Obviously though, if you're using one speaker on its own the sound is going to be in mono, and if you do the above, you'll simply have two mono speakers.

If you're really bothered, you might want to split the audio signal with an adaptor and run left and right to two speakers in that way, giving you stereo. For the purposes this speaker is meant for, though, mono is fine (and I suspect most people will never own more than one, either).

Portability

The bag provided with the speaker is useful. It fits it snugly, and has padding in it to protect from knocks - essential if you're throwing the Minirig in your travel bag along with an iPad for DJing in a hotel room, on a bus, at a beachside bar...

The bag also has a sewn-in mesh pocket in its lid, meaning you can coil the two supplied cables around your fingers before pushing them into the lid for safekeeping. While it's not as small or portable as some similar designs (I'm thinking particularly of an Altec Lansing model), you gain volume, sound quality and in particular bass by having it slightly bigger - and fitting easily as it does into one hand, you could hardly call it big.

Conclusion

We love small here at Digital DJ Tips (digital is all about small in our view), but we also appreciate the difference between pro and run-of-the-mill. This is a pro, small speaker, so it's not going to surprise you too much to hear that we love it. The fact that it's rechargeable saves worrying about batteries (although a standard USB socket might have been more sensible); we like the fact you can't accidentally leave it "on"; the battery level indicator in the LED is neat; but best of all, the sound quality for such a small device is really very good.

Minirig case

The case is a vital (and included) accessory for safe transport of the speaker and its cables.

It's plenty loud enough to fill a small room, and thus it's the perfect speaker for auditioning music from Beatport on your laptop, for practising DJing using, say, djay or DJ Player on your iPad or iPhone, and even - crazily - as an emergency monitor speaker in very small venues.

(You wouldn't want to whip it out in Pacha, but in a beachside shack where you're DJing under the canopy but the speakers are way down the beach, it could be your lifesaver.)

For the travelling, ultra-portable or just time-stretched DJ who's always looking for new places to fill a room with music - whether for music discovery or an impromptu DJ set - the Minirig is great.

In fact, for any music lover who wants to break their tunes out of their headphones and share them (and let's face it, at it's heart that's what DJing is all about), you could do a lot worse than making this investment. It'll last you a long time, and turn heads (and delight ears) wherever you use it.

Product Summary

Review Summary:

Surprisingly loud, sturdy and portable enough to take along on trips, the MInirig Speaker is perfect for any music lover who wants to break their tunes out of their headphones and share them. Instant appeal for ultra-portable DJs'!

Speaker
  • Speaker
  • Rating: 4
  • From: Minirig
  • Price: £89
  • Reviewed by:
  • On January 2, 2013
  • Last modified:August 19, 2014

Video Review

Do you like the look of the Minirig? What do you use as an ultra-portable monitoring solution for your iOS device or laptop? Please share your thoughts in the comments.

Comments

  1. Good luck on getting one though if you live outside UK. :D

  2. I’m interested to hear how they compare to a popular “consumer” mini speaker – like the x-mini 2 capsule. I have a couple of them and they’re pretty good; similar chaining feature which is nice.

    My understanding (maybe from marketing) is the best portable speaker is the Jambox – anyone have one of those?

    I also wanted to mention the Logitech Tablet speaker for iPad – decent sound for a hotel room or small area.

    While expensive to purchase or difficult to make by yourself, there is something very cool for a truly portable sound – I use it on the beach! http://store.theboomcase.com/

    • honestly, they’re barely comparable; I’ve owned a bucket load of consumer mini and micro speakers and since replacing them all with the Minirig I can say it’s the nuts… There are smaller consumer speakers out there but they all compromise sound quality, build quality, durability and battery life when compared to the ‘rig.

      Place an x-mini next to a minirig and using a cable splitter play the same tune through both – the x-mini will be inaudible or unbearable once you get into the higher volume range…

  3. Oh, thank god! I have been through so many shitty travel speakers that are supposed to have ‘amazing sound’ for their size and which are just crap. This looks like it will really deliver the goods. I go camping a lot and my holy grail is decent sound from a rechargeable speaker. This looks like I’ve found it. Thanks for the great review Phil.
    By the way, you can get it shipped to you outside of the UK from these guys:
    http://www.chemical-records.co.uk
    They’re out of stock now, but also have new stock, in different colours I believe, coming in the new year. Woot!

  4. Pro Audio & DJ Tutor says:

    Pretty expensive compared to the competition for something thats probably going to sound relatively poor compared to regular speakers. Surprised there were no tests in the video. Still handy though if it does deliver on sound much better than the current sub 20 pound offerings on amazon.

    • No point testing sound in that way as we’d be relying on my lapel mic – a bit unfair.

      It is immeasurably better sounding than any 20 quid speaker.

    • If you read the reviews on Amazon they pretty quickly support Phil’s appraisal of this unit that it is well beyond the 20 quid range. Of course it won’t match larger bookshelf speakers, but Phil made that pretty clear.

    • You clearly havent heard one have you? Forget the sub 20 pound offerings, this is on par with more expensive (than the minirig) portable speakers

      • I actually DJed a party of 20 people in a large room with one of these at the weekend – put it in a corner to improve the bass, and it was truly amazing.

  5. after much research in this category may I suggest the JBL Flip. Superb sound, wireless, reasonably priced. Check it out…

  6. Duce Castro says:

    Try the JBL Flip!! Its has amazing sound at half the price of the other “NEW AGE” bluetooth portable speakers!! I use it to Dj small gatherings with Mixmeister on my MBP!!

  7. Incredible speaker for it’s size, listening to a friends techno mix through my 2 now and they’re handling it perfectly. The bass is impressive for their size too, no waffle or distortion unless you really hammer them. It’s a good idea to set bass equaliser enhancements to zero too, it really doesn’t need them :)

  8. Dirty Disco Soundsystem says:

    We got one in black! These are the business. Can’t wait for the sub version to land. Due in next few months…

  9. Frank Wright says:

    I love my mini-rig. Probably the best £90 i’ve ever spent.

    I have however lost my charger cable it seems. Does anyone know if & where a replacement can be purchased?

  10. They are stupidly good!!!!!! u will fall in love with them, get two with a bass bin!! YESSSSSS!!!!!!!

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