The Sony Ericsson Media Speaker Stand MS430 is an impressive little device. The little cylander transforms itself into a speaker that your phone or mp3 player can rest on. It’s the perfect little phone stand, and really gives your device a nice volume boost–plus it’s ultra portable!
The MS430 is a beautiful brushed metal cylander, about the size of two stacked C-Batteries. On one side of the cylander is a white concave speaker. The other side is also a white concave groove, but this side just has a small Sony Ericson logo. This is the side where the magic happens, you pull this end and twist, and out comes a little 3.5mm auxilary plug. This also reveals a port hole, which is for deepening the bass. With the auxilary plug exposed, you can plug it into the headphone jack of your phone or MP3 player. The back of your phone rests on the Sony MS430, which props your phone at a convenient 45 degree angle.
It’s a very simple device; there’s no charger, on/off switch, or volume buttons. It’s controlled entirely by your phone or MP3 player. The MS430 requires three AAA batteries and can stream up to twelve hours of music. To access the headphone jack you pull and twist the end, but to access the battery compartment you twist and then pull. There’s a small little marker on the speaker so you know which way to turn. It’s addictingly fun just to play with twisting and turning and turning and twisting. It’s quite durable, and all of the twisting and turning will not degrade the quality of the device.
The speaker quality itself is okay, not great. It gets much louder than your phone can get, which is nice. It also packs more bass then your phone can produce. The drawback is that the audio quality could be a lot clearer; all music sounds a bit fuzzy. It also kind of has a reverb effect, where it sounds like it’s playing in a bathroom or concert hall. Frankly, the audio quality of the speaker on iPhone 4 is better, except the bass isn’t as deep and it doesn’t get as loud.
Sony’s website will lead you to believe that the MS430 portable speaker is only compatible with Sony phones, but in reality it’s rather accomodating. I have not found a phone or MP3 player that MS430 has not worked with yet, though some devices sit better than others. Also, it won’t work with most protective cases, it depends how large the headphone port cutout is. Amazon lists that it is compatible with “Sony Ericsson Xperia Play, Xperia Arc, Xperia X10, Xperia X10 mini, Apple iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, Blackberry Torch 9800, 9520 Storm, HTC EVO, HTC Thunderbolt, HTC Inspire, Samsung Galaxy S and all other mobile devices with 3.5mm connector.” It fits the iPhone 4 and bumper rather nicely, but without the bumper the iPhone (and some other phones) sits a bit lopsided.
For $39.99 from Amazon.com, the Sony Ericsson Media Speaker Stand MS430 is a pretty nice accessory to have. It’s very portable, very sleek, cool to look at, cool to play with, and it only weighs 2.4 ounces. It’s a great product to throw in your bag for when you and your friends want to jam out to some tunes. It’s also great for propping up your phone and watching videos.
The Good: Portable, Sleek, Well Designed, Simple to Use, Louder than Phone Speaker, Props Up Phone at Good Viewing Angle, Compatible with many devices
The Bad: Audio Quality is subpar