Good Vibrations! – Damson Audio Cisor Resonating Speaker Reviewed

Superb quality sound, great fun, wireless, use anywhere on anything

Pricy, suction cup needs improvement

damson audio cisor BT5 Resonating Bluetooth speaker 4 photo's of the

What the blazes does it do?

According to the Damson Audio site ‘Cisor BT5 Bluetooth Speaker uses the latest Incisor Diffusion Technology to deliver 360-degree audio from a single compact unit that looks and sounds amazing! [It] allows the music to resonate from it’s base converting almost any surface into a speaker.’

Design and build quality

The Cisor is definitely a looker, and the heavily-metallic blue-coloured version shows it off especially well. Simplicity is key to its looks, (there are only two buttons on the BT5) and you’d be hard-pushed to guess it was a speaker unless you looked closely.

At nearly a third of a kilo (326g to be exact) it’s a properly weighty piece of kit for its squat 55mm stature. It does feel nice to hold though, and you get a feeling that it’s a well-built piece of tech, and the weight obviously helps it to give great sound quality. While we were at the last Gadget Show Live (2012), we had a play with a load of different portable speakers, and there were a lot that looked, felt and sounded really plasticky and cheap- certainly not something the Cisor BT5 can be accused of.

We tested the Cisor Suction cup alongside the speaker, but found that a few times it came unstuck too easily. The sound was also dulled, due to the rubber cup itself and also – possibly – the fact the stem is made of plastic. A metal stem would maybe resonate the sound more effectively.

Damson audio Cisor BT5 Resonating Bluetooth Speaker with soft bag and combination connection and charge cable.

What we reckon…

We did a lot of smiling while testing the Cisor. In fact, anyone we demonstrated this cool little object to gave to the same reaction. Our faces now hurt from big grins.

The wireless, Bluetooth-controlled Cisor BT5 uses vibration to turn just about anything into a speaker, so just holding the speaker means there’s very little sound coming from it. The grin factor from our mates came when we placed the Cisor BT5 onto whatever surface we were nearest to.

Facial reactions range (in order) from non-plussed (what’s with the tinny sound?), to (once put on a surface) puzzled before a huge grin and a load of questions about it. Same reaction each time for each individual without fail.

The sound gotten from the BT5 is good quality, but depends heavily on the surface and also whereabouts on the surface it’s placed. For instance, sit the Cisor on cardboard box and you’ll get deep, boomy with no treble, whereas on a metal tray it’ll be overly trebly with no base.

Get the right surface though, such as the centre of a cupboard door, a wooden table, or even a plaster wall and the Cisor BT5 will reward you with an amazing range of rich tones, ladlefuls of warm base and sweet trebles- like a mini Wonka’s factory for music. Also, should you want to show off your diverse musical tastes of thrash metal thru ‘bagpipers greatest hits’ to your neighbours, stick the Cisor onto a large double-glazed window – the sound transfers through both sides.

 damson audio cisor BT5 four photos of BT5 bluetooth speaker showing it working on different surfaces

We did get some slight drawbacks with the sound on a couple of older songs though, which was that the main singer’s voices were barely audible, but the backing singers were at the forefront. For your info, this happened on Ray Charles’ ‘Hit The Road Jack’, and the original version of ‘California Dreaming’. There are also other songs where there have been similar issues. Damson Audio say this is unusual and have offered to replace them. We’ll update you if we see a difference.

Battery life is apparently around 8 hours, but we’ve had problems with it going flat within only a couple of hours maximum, and that’s with it way off full volume. Again, Damson have said they’ll replace them for us and we’ll update this review with the results as soon as possible.

As we deal with Trip and Travel Gear, we’d definitely recommend taking the BT5 with you on your excursions . If you’re camping or sleeping under the stars there’s loads of places you could use the BT5, and since there’s nothing like good mates, chilling time and some sweet tunes, this little speaker’s going to play its part on many a mellowed-out evening.

Overall

8/10

Recently, Damson Audio dropped the price of the Cisor to a very reasonable £79.99, and we think that’s a fair price. The Cisor Resonating Bluetooth Speaker has been useful a stack of times now, and the places and objects we’ve used it at or with is one long list*. It’s a brilliant and very impressive piece of tech, which is innovative, solidly built and ultra powerful.

To add: We’ve already seen copies/fakes of the Damson BT5 on the ‘net. Do yourselves a favour, and buy the real thing.

Specs

Weight  326 grams (11.5 oz)
Dimensions  54 x 55 mm (2.12 x 2.16 inches)
Battery life  Up to 8 hours
Colours  Blue, black, silver
Bundle  Charging/connection wires, bag
Website  Damson Audio UK Damson Audio USA
Price  BT5: £79.99 rrp | Suction cup: £9.49

*List of objects we’ve used used the Cisor on includes; Frying pan (cold!), plates, empty can, wooden bench, desk top, glass shower screen, car bonnet, windows, leather cushion, cardboard boxes, Peli iPad case, plastic containers, office chair, acoustic guitar (good sound), shelving, interior walls, doors, an american football, a printer, cupboard doors, garage work surface, piece of material pulled tight, a cup coaster, and more… 

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A great big Thanks to Damson Audio for supplying the Cisor BT5!

Words/Testers: Chris Davies, Matt Davies | Photo’s/Films: Chris Davies, Matt Davies

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