Portable speakers rarely, if ever, involve the end user experimenting with sound, but this is what OrigAudio intended when they created the Rock-It 3.0 and Epishock. They are portable speakers that you stick to an item, any item, and turn it into a speaker. What is this sorcery, and does it really work? Grab a “Red Solo Cup” and a solid picnic table, we’re going to make music.
The Rock-It 3.0 is the latest version of OrigAudio’s original “portable vibration speaker system.” It works by essentially doing away with the speaker cones. You are left with a vibration unit with a sticky pad on one side. Stick the Rock-It 3.0 onto any object and it will amplify the audio you are playing through it. Fidelity isn’t quite the strong suit for the Rock-It 3.0 since the quality really depends on the item you stick the vibration unit to. This is where things can get interesting and fun. If you are the curious type like me, you’ll start sticking it to all sorts of things just to hear what it sounds like. The experimentation of what you can use to get good audio is half the fun of the Rock-It 3.0. I used cups, jar lids, soda cans, and even the box that the Rock-It 3.0 came in. For the loudest sound you want something hollow and vaguely cone shaped. It seemed the best audio I got was on an overturned red Solo plastic cup, which is handy because they are usually handily available at parties where you want music anyways.
As I said the fidelity isn’t great nor are you getting any true stereo sound. You can buy more Rock-It 3.0’s and daisy-chain them together. The audio will be louder, but you will still be lacking fidelity and true stereo sound. Also with its small size you don’t get a lot of range between the highs and lows, you are firmly in the mid-range sound-wise. The Rock-It 3.0 is perfect for personal or small group listening.
If the Rock-It 3.0 is the personal “portable vibration speaker system,” then the Epishock is the party “portable vibration speaker system.” The Epishock is essentially the same system, but on a bigger scale. While the Rock-It 3.0 works best with smaller items, the Epishock is better with big items. It has a bigger vibration unit and bigger sticky pad. It can also put out some serious rumble. Again like the Rock-It 3.0 your sound quality will vary depending on what you stick the Epishock to. I used tables, counter-tops, large boxes, and even my car. The best audio I got was with my dresser, I placed it on top, opened one drawer, and it sounded really good.
As with the Rock-It 3.0, the Epishock is not true stereo, but you can daisy-chain Epishocks together to increase volume. The Epishock is better for a larger gathering where you want something loud. Its fidelity does better reproducing the lower end, but not so great on the high ends of sound.
But my experimentation in combinations was not done. I decided to daisy-chain the Rock-It 3.0 off the Epishock. This proved to be something of great find. OrigAudio never suggested it, but I found it to be a pretty good audio set-up this way. The Rock-It 3.0, with its small size and higher pitch, becomes a “tweeter” and the Epishock, with its beefier low end, becomes a “woofer” giving you a better overall audio range. I used these two together for a week in place of my computer speakers, with the Rock-It 3.0 attached to a Solo cup and the Epishock attached to my desk. I listened to everything from music to YouTube shows and they did a decent job. I was surprised and a bit impressed.
While they won’t be winning any sound quality awards, I can recommend the Rock-It 3.0 if you want portable audio for yourself or a small group and don’t have a lot of space; the Epishock for larger areas or gatherings. If you and your friends have a strong curiosity streak, then both are perfect, just gather a bunch of random items and have fun.
For more information see the OrigAudio web site.