Tech News on G4
The Amazing Rock-It! Portable Vibration Speaker
Feb 23, 2012
By Greg Gazin - Apple Gazin’ - G4 Canada
Speakers come in all shapes and sizes, but Rock-It by OrigAudio.ca is more like a speaker-maker, because it's a gadget that can actually turn almost any item you want into an actual speaker.
Intriguing? Let me explain.
Rock-It works on the same principle as an eardrum. It takes music or voice from your sound source, converts it to vibrations, which are then, transmitted to whatever object that it's attached to – and that's where the sound comes out of.
Seen on ABC TV's Shark Tank
The idea came about back in 2009 when a couple of guys who were always on the road, wanted to find a way to listen to their music. So they came up with a device that when you attach it an object that object actually becomes the speaker.
In fact, if you're a fan of the ABC TV series Shark Tank the co-creators of the product were featured in Season 2, Episode 7, where multi-millionaire Robert Herjavec gave them 150K for 15% of the company.
Works on Vibrations
The Rock-It, portable vibration speaker, which is now version 2.0, is a small almost thumb shaped pod that sits easily in the palm of your hand.
To use it simply detach the round cap carefully unwinding the cable. Then take the other end and attach it to your sound source, like an iPod or iPhone or any device for that matter with a compatible jack and then hit play. The head at the end of the unraveled cable will begin to vibrate and you'll hear just a little bit of sound. Then take the head, which has a removable adhesive pad on it and stick it to anything within reach, and voilà, instant speaker!
I had an opportunity to take Rock-It 2.0 for a test drive and trust me I felt like a doctor with his stethoscope attaching and detaching it to virtually any inanimate object I could find.
I attached it to cups, tin cans and garbage cans; Tupperware, milk containers, juice boxes a coffee table, a fridge and even other gadgets. Interestingly enough what I discovered is that the item that reproduced the best sound was something that should've been obvious from the beginning – a cardboard box and it seemed the more hollow the subject, the fuller the sound.
Rock-It is a great little device and it's nice rounded shape is certainly an improvement over the original version and if you carry it around, it's certainly an attention grabber. Passers by will ask: "Where's the sound coming from?"
Rock-It ships with a USB power cord, an audio extension cord and 2 extra sticky pads. It requires 2 AAA batteries or you can power via USB, USB adapter or an optional AC adapter.
The only thing I would like to have seen would be perhaps a built-in rechargeable lithium-ion battery, similar to the one that OrigAudio.ca uses in its little portable speaker, the Volcano.
You're not going to get the same sound as you would from a dedicated audio system or decent set of speakers, but for on the road in a pinch and a place where you need external audio, Rock-It is quite the little gem and it certainly rocks!
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