review

Anker PowerConf Review Speakerphone 6,700 mAh Powerbank

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

With a design reminiscent of a UFO mothership, the Anker PowerConf is a useful tool for a business or home office setup where Skype group meetings are part of the schedule!

5.5-inch square design
The Anker PowerConf has a 5.5-inch square body and blends well in any environment, thanks to its professional-looking, space grey design.
Aside from having the Anker PowerConf connected to a mobile via bluetooth, you can also connect it to a desktop computer via the USB-C port, which also doubles as the charging port.When the PowerConf is connected to a computer though, you cannot have it connected to a phone at the same time.
Since the PowerConf can be set up as a Bluetooth speaker and microphone, the Anker PowerConf works well for various setups, including WhatsApp conference call, Facebook Live and conference calls, using a phone handset rather than an app.

PowerConf connected to SoundCore 2
The Anker PowerConf supports audio output too, which means you can connect the PowerConf to a more powerful external speaker via aux cable connection. When connected to an external speaker, the PowerConf internal speaker gets disabled automatically. Having the option to hook up the PowerConf to an external speaker is useful for improving the bass response since the PowerConf 3-watt speaker has been tuned to favor the vocal, upper mid-range frequencies.
3-watt 1.75-inch full range speaker
There are a total of six microphones built-in to the PowerConf that are spread across the aluminium mid-frame ring of the speaker. The microphone array provides a 360 degree pick-up that is perfect for round-table or group conference calls. The microphones have noise cancellation but, instead of, using ANC technology, the PowerConf speaker uses a DSP noise reduction algorithm to improve the sound quality of the microphone.

The PowerConf microphones are not designed to cancel noise like ANC noise cancellation does; hence noise cancellation is exclusively done by the DSP chip, which does a good job at removing noise, echo and distortions from the voice signal without degrading the voice quality and amplification, which is good up to 5 meters. That said, the further away you move from the PowerConf the quieter your voice will sound.
While DSP noise reduction works, it's not as accurate as the ANC noise cancellation in a pair of headphones, like the Soundcore Life 2, which uses the outside input of a microphone(s) to get a full on noise cancellation effect. Another advantage of ANC noise cancellation is that it can be turned off manually by the user; whereas DSP noise reduction cannot be turned off, which could help improve battery life.
The internal 6700mAh battery inside the PowerConf recharges via 5V/2A input charge and can be used just like an Anker powerbank to output 5V/2.1 charge for recharging external devices via the USB port located on the rear of the unit, next to the AUX OUT and USB-C power port.
The USB-port cannot be used for charging the PowerConf and, it will only work when the PowerConf speaker it turned on.
The USB port has also been programmed to output power charge according to battery level. When battery is less than 30%, the USB port automatically lowers the output current from 2.1A to 1A.
When battery level is less than 10%, the USB port will not output charge so, you will not be able to charge any devices. Charging the Anker PowerConf takes 4 hours and you get up to 24 hours of call time and up to 19 hours of music playtime when playing audio at 50% volume.
The top and bottom halves of the PowerConf speaker are made of smooth, hard plastic. The top section has perforated holes in a radiated pattern, which double as the speaker grill.
In the centre of the unit, there is a large status led ring with five capacitive-touch buttons, including independent volume controls (volume up and volume down), mute button, play/pause button and answer/end call button. With the answer/end call button, you can also reject a call (by holding the button for 2 seconds).
The PowerConf connects to a phone via Bluetooth 5.0 connection, which supports up to 10 meters of range; hence you can keep the phone far away from the PowerConf. When you receive an incoming call, the status led ring breathes green. When adjusting the volume, the status led ring will also light up blue in a clockwise and counter-clockwise fashion.
The status led also feedbacks the muting of sound and battery level. When sound is muted, the status led turns red. The led will also light up green when checking the battery. Battery level is checked by pressing the power button, which is located on the front of the unit, next to the bluetooth button. When battery is low, the led flashes red.
Both the power button and bluetooth button are raised buttons with mechanical switches, while the capacitive touch buttons on top are flat.
After powering off the unit, whichever device the PowerConf is paired to last, it will automatically reconnect. Also, after 30 minutes of inactivity, PowerConf will automatically turn off to conserve battery power. The bottom section of the PowerConf is sealed shut and features a large and thick round rubber feet, which provides excellent stability and anti-skid support.
A long USB-A to USB-C charging cable is included alongside a snazzy hard-shell zip case for transporting the 340-gram PowerConf. The hard-shell case is Anker-branded and made with a water resistant outer shell and lined with soft felt fabric to prevent scratches.
The zip case features also a long webbing loop on the side that would allow you to loop it onto a wrist, clip it or hook it onto something. You can buy the Anker PowerConf speakerphone on amazon.

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