Sharp Launched 3 different ranges of portable speakers from the small Sharp GX-BT 180 that we have recently received to the large GX-BT 480 that I will review soon and finally the GX-BT280 that we are reviewing in this review and this is the middle size speaker.
The GX-BT 280 like its small and bigger brothers come in Black, Blue and red which is what we got to review. The GX- BT280 costs £56.60 on Amazon compared to the GX-BT 180 that costs £38 and the GX-BT 480 that costs £99.
The packaging really professional looking with a nice picture of the speaker being the focal point of the advertising this would make me want to pick this up over overs. Inside the box, the speaker is well protected with a plastic covering and under that, you have the USB-C cable, and User manuals.
Design-wise it looks similar to the GX-BT 180 but just a bigger version. It’s a cylindrical design with a grille that covers the speaker 360 degrees and is made of fabric material with rubber accents on both the top and bottom. The red version we got really does stand out and you get 3 symbols on the front.
The Plus & Minus are for the volume and the Triangle is your play/pause. On the back of the speaker you will find a rubber cover and under that is the charge port and AUX ports and as with most Bluetooth speakers they cover these for protection. In addition to that, you also get the power button,
At each end of the speaker, you will find a silver passive bass radiator that has the sharp logo printed in the centre. The issue I found is which is top or bottom but sharp have come up with a solution they have attached a lace cord meaning if you hang the speaker up it does not matter as you will get sound from both ends. However, when not hanging do I lay it down or stand it up and which end? Our testing seems to indicate lay it on its side provides a smooth and warm sound but see what you like.
Once you have figured that out the speaker is lightweight at just under a 1lb which means it’s great to pop in your bag for a day to the beach or around the pool. The speaker is also IP56 rated meaning it’s splashproof and dustproof. However, This speaker not waterproof so to play it on the safe side keep it away from the pool the sunbed table or hang on the umbrella is the perfect place.
The performance of this speaker is one of an audio punch. It’s clear and loud which is what you want from a wireless speaker. Connecting this speaker was very simple to turn it on and it automatically tried to connect and once paired you’re ready to go.
The audio quality of this speaker like its little brother was very clear and when we listened to Diggin my grave from a Star is Born Soundtrack. The electric guitars are just so sweet and the vocals are just so smooth and detailed. It the bass that is the star of the show with its bass radiators each end the bass is just a really nice deep bass which I loved when the speaker is hanging as it gave that stronger base.
Battery wise its also really good not quite as good as the B&O Beoplay A1 but with 20 hours playtime and the charge time from 0% is 3 hours. The negative which this speaker has is the microphone it’s poor when using it to take calls and for when using my devices smart assistant it just did not hear me it’s not a deal-breaker just annoying meaning am having to do more of the changes via my phone. However, Like I say no big deal
Overall, Like the GX-BT 180 sharp has done a nice job with the GX-BT280 at £56 its well worth considering as it gives you a nice sound profile, however, some might be put off by which way to have this speaker positioned. However, If you’re looking for a speaker that does not cost the earth and gives a decent sound quality sharp have a great option and in 3 colours there one for everyone. This is a speaker I would 100% take to the poolside or beach considering its IP56 I would not be concerned with the odd splash.