Creative launches Sound Blaster Roar wireless speaker

Creative has introduced the Sound Blaster Roar five-driver wireless portable speaker.

The new speaker is designed to rival home stereo systems, as well aiming to become a heavyweight in the current wireless speaker market. The speaker was given a sneak preview at CES 2014 where it received positive feedback, according to its maker.

MORE: CES 2014 news review – the highlights

The Sound Blaster Roar connects to mobile devices via Bluetooth and supports aptX and AAC codecs for high-quality audio playback. It also boasts NFC technology for quick connections to NFC-enabled devices.

The Sound Blaster Roar has been dubbed the 'Audiophile Sound Booklet' thanks to its relatively small size. It measures 57 x 202 x 115 mm and weighs 1.1kg. It also features a bi-amplified design that uses two amplifiers, instead of the traditional one, found in most other portable speakers.

Far-field high frequency front-firing drivers project sound further than most other speakers in its class in an attempt to deliver true, space-filling sound. Active bass and midrange drivers are top-firing, while two side-firing passive radiators – for lower-range audio – round off the five-driver design.

The speaker can support phone calls via Bluetooth, and has a MicroSD card slot that supports MP3/WMA/WAV files; it can even skip through folders rather than individual tracks.

It has a Bedtime Mode that gradually reduces the volume before shutting down and a Life Saver Mode, which plays random tones and sounds at varying intervals to keep users alert. We're sure this will come in useful, just not sure how.

A voice recorder is also built-in with files being able to be saved directly to a MicroSD card. Creative claims the built-in 6000 mAh Lithium-Ion rechargeable battery provides up to eight hours of playback.

The Creative Sound Blaster Roar is currently only available in the US for $199. Availability in other regions is expected soon.

MORE: Best Bluetooth speakers to buy in 2014

by Max Langridge

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Max is a staff writer for What Hi-Fi?'s sister site, TechRadar, in Australia. But being the wonderful English guy he is, he helps out with content across a number of Future sites, including What Hi-Fi?. It wouldn't be his first exposure to the world of all things hi-fi and home cinema, as his first role in technology journalism was with What Hi-Fi? in the UK. Clearly he pined to return after making the move to Australia and the team have welcomed him back with arms wide open.