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Silicon Valley Global LLC  
Tunebug Vibe
Type: Mobile, Peripheral
From: Silicon Valley Global LLC
Usage: Audio
Tunebug Vibe
As 'surfacesound' technology goes, Tunebug's Vibe is more geek than chic. It looks cool and functions as advertised, but it's also pretty darn superfluous.
Posted February 11, 2011
One of the niftier ideas to come to the portable MP3 player market, SVG's line of audio peripherals certainly shrieks geek in all the right ways.

The Tunebug Vibe specifically is a portable speaker system that turns most any resonant surface into a flat panel speaker. And you're all like "no way!"


It's a diminutive chromium wedgy that plugs into any 3.5mm audio jack (found on your MP3/smartphone/iThingy of choice) and then just sits on your desk, bench or table top, pumping audio right into the surface, amplifying it modestly but with surprising clarity, including bottom end.

Said resonant surfaces include most any flat top made of wood or polymer or even glass, but not concrete or granite, which don't vibrate in the least... unless you're in Haiti (is that cruel?).

As a 2.3 x 1 inch hunk of triangularity, the thing is touted as weighing "only" 5.3 ounces, but that's "only" a third of a pound - a rock this size weighs less. In short, it's a hefty little thing, though decent mass is key to the transfer of energy required for sound surface technology in the first place, so there you go.

Still, within the Vibe resides a LiPoly battery, charged via USB and good for some 5 hours of playtime, more if you keep it quiet. Mind you, even at "full volume" (as adjusted at the source) the output of the Vibe only manages loudness at conversational levels; quiet conversations at that, so don't expect it to drive an impromptu patio party or keep you company when you're banging around in the garage, unless faint background music is your thing, Granny.

But for late nights in the office or putzing around the kitchen, Tunebug's Vibe certainly delivers as advertised. Then again, it doesn't advertise "loud" or even respectably voluble, so isn't obligated to deliver that. And it doesn't.
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3 (out of 5)