X-mini HAPPY Speaker Review + X-mini II Comparison – Small Ball Shape, Great Big Sound!

There are all kinds of speakers for the iPhone and iPod Touch. Very small ones that plug straight into the iPhone or iPod using the 30-pin connector, large docking speakers, and of course others that may house the device. However, none that I personally have seen are crafted with elegance like the X-mini HAPPY Speaker.

A picture of the HAPPY (left) and II (right)

The X-mini HAPPY Speaker from X-mini is a tiny ball shaped speaker designed to be admired for its wonderful sound.

With the speaker’s size, you gets tons of quality. When I first unboxed it, I was like, “Woah! This looks small.” But after testing the sound quality this little guy provides, I was astonished.

When you open the packaging, you are met by the speaker of course, a soft carrying pouch, a USB cable, and the instructions manual. So, how do you play music off of your iPod of iPhone? Innovation is the key to success, and that’s just what X-mini has done when designing this and most of their other speakers. To reduce the amount of cables that you have to carry around with you, because the speaker is meant to be portable, there is a built in 3.5 mm audio cable that can be connected straight into your device. This wire when not in use wraps up under the speaker’s body becoming invisible while also being stowed securely. And this, answering your question (well mine really) is how you play music through the speaker’s tiny speakers!

After connecting your device, everything’s straightforward – click the wheel which is positioned on the side of the speaker, crank up your music and adjust the volume to your preference using both the iPhone and iPod volume rockers and the speaker’s own wheel. Surprisingly, the volume capacity of the speaker is great compared to its size. The speaker was able to project sound all the way to the other side of my house.

Comparison

The company was also nice enough to send along a sample of the X-mini II which is priced considerably lower than the HAPPY. However, some features are missing from the overall package compared to the HAPPY.

Both of the speakers have a way to produce bass which can be turned on and off optionally with a simple twist to the speakers. When you turn the top part of the speaker(s) counter-clockwise and the bottom clockwise, the top portion will spring up revealing a sort of rubber tube with ridges. When this is done, and music is playing, the speakers automatically start incorporating bass into the music. The difference between when the speakers was closed and when they were open was huge with the II actually vibrating on a flat surface.

Also, both are charged via the USB cable provided in both of the boxes. They come charged initially. I got about 10-12 hours out of each, and charging them was no hassle.

Like mentioned on the website, both of the speaker have a sort of feature called the “Buddyjack System”. Of course, when you hear it first you have no idea what it means, but this lets you connect different X-mini speakers to get a line of them.

There are a few minor differences, and some major ones between the two speakers. First off, the HAPPY has a different method for being controlled. As lightly mentioned above, the speaker features a wheel for both turning on and volume adjustment. It turns out that there is actually just one wheel rather than two. The wheel also contains other features like being able to control playback (pause/play). So basically, there’s just one external wheel on the speaker, while the II has a switch, and a volume wheel. Although X-mini’s intentions were to make everything easier by combing all of the controls into one wheel, sometimes this does get confusing and I often find myself clicking the wrong way or doing something else that I hadn’t meant to do. So in short, the all-in-one-wheel is actually more confusing at some points than the regular switch and volume wheel on the II.

Another difference between the two is that the HAPPY proves to be a bit larger than the II by comparison. When you hold both next to each other, you’ll notice that the HAPPY is a bit higher, while the II stays down more. I have a good idea why it is like this, and that is because the HAPPY actually is an Mp3 player on its own. On the side of the speaker, you will see a memory card reader where you can insert a card of your own, and it will automatically play music. Yup, if you have a spare 8GB card laying around (I do), then you can use it instead of lugging around your iPod or iPhone. This is again another genius way that X-mini has designed the HAPPY to make it easier to listen to music!

Both of the speakers prove to be very valuable, innovative, and most of all unique when you get down to it. Sometimes I find myself using the II more than the HAPPY mainly because of the all-in-one confusion issue. So if you’re looking for a hardcore, epic, little winner of a speaker, I highly recommend that these two are the ones for you. They have their pros and their cons, but they’re the best you’ll get!

The HAPPY comes in one color combination: black body, with blue inside. The II comes in three colors: black and red, red on red, white on white, and gray on black. All of them have a slick and polished finish that when not scratched looks absolutely phenomenal.

The HAPPY is the more expensive one selling at a list price of $79.00, while the II has a list price of $29.90. Both of these mini speakers are worth your time, money, and most of all music!