It’s a lazy Sunday at home. We are sprawled on our sofas intent on doing absolutely nothing. Except I keep getting up and moving a small, black speaker around the room every two songs or so. I’m trying to figure out if the sound emanating from this lil’ luxe device really does change automatically as advertised, depending on its position in the room.

I’m playing around with the Devialet Mania, the luxury French brand’s latest portable speaker. The device is portable, alright weighing just over 2 kg. I take it along with me to the guest room where I’m writing this article at my desk. After I’m done, I carry it back to the living room, where I cue some more music, as I wait for my Uber ride. God forbid, I get bored even for five minutes. 


The orb-shaped Devialet Mania, is understated in its aesthetics. There’s an interwoven finish on the black orb and a curved handle that stands out. There are three hardware buttons on each side of the handle. On one side are the power button, the Bluetooth button and a ‘Devialet’ button that can be used to check the battery status. On the other side are the play/pause button and volume up and down buttons. The LED indicator rests on top of this line-up, and I wish it was on the other side, as I have to keep an eye on both sides of the device while powering on, enabling Bluetooth or checking battery status. 


The Devialet Mania boasts four full-range speakers and two subwoofers. I hit play on Beyonce’s latest Texas Hold ‘Em, and Queen Bey’s vocals come through loud and clear, with her deep dulcet, after the playful banjo at the beginning. 

I cue my current earworm next — BTS’s Cypher Pt. 3:Killer, in which the band’s rap-line members RM, J-Hope and Suga take turns to spit verses. The vocals are again punchy and so is the percussion. The Mania is a very bass-forward speaker and it shows in every track I queue.

I rewind to my 20s and play some Arctic Monkeys. In I Wanna Be Yours, the bass overpowers a bit, the thump of the drums comes out loud, almost with the same power as Alex Turner’s vocals. 

The familiar percussion-heavy opening of Starboy by the Weekend and Daft Punk is enjoyable as always, but the bass once again jostles to share space with all elements of music on this track. This is not to say that the vocals and other instruments. It’s just that the device leans on the side of favouring low, bass tones. 

In vocal-rich tracks such as good ol’ Bairi Piya from Devdas, sung beautifully by Shreya Ghoshal, her silken tone comes through with ease. The string instruments too shine throughout the track. 

Special Features

The proprietary real-time adaptation feature does change the streaming sound as I move it around the house. When I place it in the middle of the room, the acoustics feel more omnidirectional.  When I place it atop a table in a corner, the boom is significantly directed towards the space in front of it. The Active Stereo Calibration is said to happen courtesy of four room-calibrating microphones that allow the device to change the audio rendering based on its surroundings automatically. The Devialet Mania has visible push woofers and it’s both madly cool and hypnotic to look at.

User experience

I use the Devialet app to complement the speaker experience. The controls are fairly minimal on the app — it lets me adjust the volume, skip through tracks and give some control over the equaliser. The pairing process is old-school manual and not as snappy as the fast-pairing features we see on many Bluetooth devices now. I also enabled Spotify Connect through the app, which makes navigating the playlist easy.  The device is also compatible with AirPlay 2, and also has an in-built voice assistant for commands. 

There’s a proprietary USB-C cable charger that ships with the device. The device is splash-resistant with an IPX4 rating. According to the company, the built-in battery keeps the speaker going for up to 10 hours of wireless streaming. In real-time usage, I easily got about eight hours of playback before having to plug it in. 


To set some context, the Devialet Mania is an “affordable” offering from the luxury audio brand. It is also the first high-fidelity portable smart speaker with 360° stereo sound that Devialet has to offer. What works in its favour is the clarity of sound in even at high volume, a rich sound profile that does justice to both instruments used and the vocals, decent battery life and automatic spatial mapping to deliver the perfect sound profile. What might not appeal to some consumers is its bass-heavy sound profile. In addition to that, the app functionalities are limited and the app itself sometimes glitchy.

The Devialet Mania might appeal to you if the luxury brand has been on your wishlist and you don’t want to spend lakhs on owning one of their devices. If an excellent high-fi portable speaker is your only criteria, there are many options in the market that might make it to the shortlist, at a much lower price tag. 

Price: ₹89,000
Pros: Rich sound profile, active stereos calibration, portable design 
Cons: Materials used don’t feel luxe, bass can be overpowering in some tracks