Most helpful positive review
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Good speaker for current sale prices
on March 6, 2014
Note: This unit is listed for sale in several different places on Amazon, so be sure to shop for the best price by doing a search on Amazon. Also, note that I have raised my rating to 5 stars due to the very good sound quality achieved with just a little experience and learning on how to set up and use this properly. (See updates at end of review.)
For the current sale prices between 50 and 70 bucks, this is a decent value, super for some, a bit less for others. Those who like strong, thumping bass will love it. Those with more refined tastes will be OK with it (or maybe not, if you absolutely hate the boomy bass thing [but see updates below]). For young folks, maybe a good choice as they seem to like this and the Bose type units a lot. Also, this is an excellent choice for watching movies with your tablet.
The good parts are you get a solid, well built unit with some nice features. It's stylish, heavy, runs off A/C (no batteries). It is portable in the sense that it is small enough to easily carry from one room to another, but not in the sense of traveling in a car (unless you have an inverter for your DC auto power). For a home unit, I think it's fine.
The controls are simple and easy to use. There's a switch for the snazzy circle light on top, one for the D-surround sound, a volume up, down, and power on/off. There are LED indicator lights for the D-Surround, Power, and Bluetooth. The "D-Surround" is the typical spread field effect. It sounds pretty good, but unfortunately accentuates the already boomy base, so it works better with some material than others. If you turn this off, you get a more "normal" sound stage which is preferable on some things. That said. at moderate volume levels the "D-Surround" works pretty well.
The Bluetooth paired quickly and easily in my tests and worked well, no dropouts or other problems. This seems to be the older version of BT, though, and while the sound quality is acceptable, it's nowhere near audiophile quality. Using the Aux-In port, I was able to get much improved sound quality. The Bluetooth is adequate and fine at moderate volume levels, and is great for Netflix videos and so forth. But the wired sound is hands down the best and really shows what this little speaker is capable of. (This is true for many other similar speakers as well.)
Anther great feature is the USB power ports on the back. You get two 5 Volt, 1.5 Amp ports, so you can power one USB device in use, while charging another and there's plenty of power for most uses. (Note: the USB ports supply power only, no data functions.) A nice touch is that they can charge your devices even when the unit is turned off. Excellent!
The pop-up tablet stand worked fine with my Amazon Kindle HD 8.9" tablet and would work with most anything. It's very easy to pop up and fold down. I liked it. At this time, I have not been able to test the NFC or the Panasonic Streaming app. Both have been reported to work fine, though, in reviews I read elsewhere.
It's true, as others have reported, that the SC-NP10 starts to distort at max volume levels, the good news, however, is that there is plenty of volume before you hit that point. For a reasonable size room, it is plenty loud, and for up close personal use it will go louder than most could stand.
I have given this unit 4 stars based on the excellent value at current prices, the many nice features, and the good (if not perfect) sound. For casual use, it is perfectly fine. No, it's not among the best I've ever heard, but it is certainly adequate for casual use, and it costs much less than most of those "better" sounding units. Add in the stylish design, nice touches like the dual USB power ports, the tablet stand, lighted "pad", simple controls and good overall operation and I think you have a winner.
I think young people would especially like this unit, but I am quite satisfied with it, myself, and no one calls me "young" these days. I felt it such a good value, that I bought a couple as gifts. If you tame that bass a bit, I think you will be satisfied with it, and if you love that bass, you will love it.
Bonus Star: If your primary use is watching movies with your tablet, personal projector, or laptop; that plays to the strengths of this unit. The D-Surround and bass are much like a "Theatre Mode" and give truly excellent sound for movies. So add a star if that is your main reason for purchasing the SC-NP10.
Also if you tend to listen at low to moderate volume levels, I think you would be very happy with this unit.
The two USB power/charging ports are very convenient and give you unlimited listening time while recharging your tablet or other device. I have now tested the unit with several different tablets, phones, laptops and all paired easily and work well. Better quality source material is rewarded with excellent audio results. Compact size is also a nice plus.
Also, note that since the "D.Surround" tends to emphasize bass, you can use this to your advantage. When listening at low volume levels, turning on "D.Surround" will act like a "loudness" control and the boosted bass will help since our ears hear bass differently at low volumes. It's easy to toggle on/off to see which setting you prefer.
2014-03-13 Update: After a few minor adjustments and learning, I am getting excellent sound quality from this unit. Activate the higher quality bluetooth as described above, turn off the D.Surround for music (according to taste, it tends to emphasize bass response, on some things I like it, others not so much. Great for video/movies, though!) and make sure your playback device is setup correctly. The "boominess" referenced above is all but gone. Now raising my rating to 5 stars because of the low price, great features and quality.
2014-09-03 Update: After having used this for some time, I note that it pairs quickly and flawlessly with everything I've tried, usually pairs almost immediately. I am finding it to be a really handy little unit. I purchased several more as gifts and an extra one for myself when I found them on sale recently. The aux in and USB power ports are really handy and the sound is good for the price. Note that plugging in a cable to the audio in port disables bluetooth, so if your bluetooth does not work, check and make sure you did not forget and leave a cable plugged into the aux in port.