As manufacturers try to figure out a new USP for their Bluetooth speakers, Sony introduced a line of party speakers, called the GTK-PG10, with an interesting twist. No, they don't have fancy LED lights that sync with your music, but something a bit more functional — two foldable panels that have cup holders.
Now before you dismiss the seemingly silly idea, think again about the bigger picture. These speakers are huge with a cubical profile — standing 376 mm tall and weighing a whopping 6.7 kg. This volume allows it to pack a punch, in almost every regard.
The GTK-PG 10 comes with a massive 180mm cone-type woofer at its heart with two 40mm tweeters that rest within the foldable panels. This means, when you take out the arms to show-off the four cup holders to your friends, you’re also spreading out the tweeters. Sony says this helps in throwing the sound wider during parties. In reality, there is a tiny hiccup in the playback when you spread those arms so that speakers can optimise the throw of the sound for this orientation of the tweeters.
The PG10 is built like a tank, be it its main body or the panels. One of the arms has a sticker attached to it asking you to not rest your bottom on them and that they can support a maximum weight of 10 kg. I had my doubts about the hinge system initially, but after a Sony employee enthusiastically demonstrated its strength at the launch event, I was convinced. So far it looks trusty, and I don’t bother much about it anymore. The central console consists of an LCD screen that is surrounded by rubberised buttons.
The sound of the speakers is mostly balanced. It’s sufficiently loud during outdoor parties. You just have to find a wall that can reflect the sound just in case it's a poolside party. The sound doesn’t crackle even at the highest volume level.
Although advertised as party speakers, I found these more suitable to my household needs. It can easily fill up an entire mid-size apartment at about 80% volume. So there’s ample headroom if you want more from it.
Sony was extremely generous to pack this with a whopping 4,900mAh battery. It claims to offer up to 13 hours of listening time. I’m not a party person, however I had the chance to take these to a party that lasted about 6 hours. During my very unscientific battery drain test, the speakers breezed through the six hours and i still had about 40% charge when I returned home. The speakers ran on full blast for almost the entirety of the party.
During regular usage, the speakers lasted for about three to four days on average. My daily usage habits include listening to Dead and Company concerts for about an hour, watching a movie every night and using the speakers as a guitar amplifier for about 40 minutes. Yeah, paired with a guitar processor, these speakers give the cleanest sound when they are not connected to the proprietary AC adapter, making them really good monitor speakers.
You can connect the speakers with Sony Music Centre an Fiestable apps to your smartphone. Music Centre lets you remotely use the speakers via a Bluetooth connection, so you can change the volume and sift through the different modes that include Bluetooth, USB, FM Radio, Audio In and Karaoke. Yes, this also has a quarter-inch input jack for mics and dedicated buttons for the same on the central console. The Fiestable lets you pick karaoke tracks to sing along. I wish the app allowed switching on and off the speakers remotely.
Sony with the GTK-PG10 has proved that wireless Bluetooth speakers shouldn’t necessarily be small with fancy LED lighting to catch your eye and ears. It combines its heft with a timeless design and practicality to offer you a great wireless experience with no compromise. And although you would be using those cupholders to hold anything but glasses, you’re guaranteed to have a good time with these.
At ₹19,990, the PG10 competes against the Bose Sound Touch 10, which is priced two grands lower and even comes with a remote. But it won’t make you look cool at parties.