It’s hard to say if it’s because we’re all now officially living in the future, or the fact that the wireless speaker market is now more saturated than a Twinkie factory, but portable wireless speakers just don’t raise eyebrows like they did in days past. So what does turn our heads? How about an aluminum disc that dishes out 360 degrees of sound while floating above its base stand like a flying saucer plucked straight out of “War of the Worlds?” Such is the design of Mars, an aptly-named speaker on Indiegogo.
Though it’s powers of flight may appear unique, we’ve actually seen this audio wizardry before in the OM/One, also a crowdfund project. Like the OM/One, Mars’ astonishing defiance of gravity can be attributed to a clever application of the good ol’ magnetic force, matching the polar opposite sides of two magnetic fields between the saucer speaker and its base stand, creating enough push to keep the saucer air-bound.
But the Mars appears to be an advancement on the genre, thanks in part to its versatile base stand. Apart from keeping the saucer afloat, the stand also acts as a charging station that raises and lowers the disc automatically for charging purposes. There’s a subwoofer tucked into it as well to help beef up the low end.
Mars’ creator, Allen Zhang, claims the speaker’s talent for levitation is more than just a clever parlor trick, and is actually grounded (no pun intended) in acoustic design, allowing the top piece to decouple from solid surfaces for unimpeded sound transference. The Mars is also waterproof up to 3 feet, and offers a claimed 8 hours of playback from its rechargeable battery.
The thing is, while those features are certainly enticements, as long as this crazy device can manage to put out some decent sound, it’s kind of a hit already. It’s a tech geek’s dream device, ready for delivery to Captain Picard’s quarters. And really, who wouldn’t want to put a speaker that freaking floats front and center at their next party or get together? Talk about a conversation starter.
The Mars is also available for a pretty sweet deal, priced right around the same cost as other speakers in the portable genre, at $169 under Indiegogo’s Innovator special. And if that doesn’t sell it, the Mars also has a few other cool tricks, including proximity volume, which can adjust the playback level according to how far away your source device is from the speaker, as well as offering an on board speakerphone and a durable aircraft-grade aluminum body for the saucer.
The speaker is also fully funded twice over, so no worries about a crowdfund implosion. Delivery is slated for April 2015.
We obviously can’t attest to the sound quality, or the claim that Mars’ levitation enhances its sonic talents. But if you’re looking for something with that out-of-this-world vibe, this could be the speaker you’ve been after. You can check out the Mars for yourself at its Indiegogo page right now.