GOOGLE NEST MINI

WE RATE IT!

9.5/10

Design & Construction

Smart speakers are everywhere but for the beginner, the Google Nest Mini is always a good option to test out the feasibility of a smart home. The Nest Mini is essentially an upgraded version to the original Google Home Mini. Built to be compact, the Nest Mini is a speaker that not only listens to your commands but also plays music. From the first look, there aren't any visible buttons but doing a little wave at the top of the Nest Mini reveals two LEDs at each side which allows you to control your playback volume. Tapping on the left side allows you to decrease volume and right to increase volume. A single tap in the middle now acts as a play/pause button. However, the Nest Mini unlike the original Home Mini does not receive power via Micro-USB but instead a standard barrel plug. Underneath, you will find a circular rubber pad that keeps it from moving about and also a built-in mounting hole that allows you to hang it on the wall. On top, the speaker has 4 LED indicators and is covered with a tough fabric. And at the rear, a microphone on/off switch, in case you need a bit of privacy.


Sound Quality

The sound reproduction of the Nest Mini is decent. At 45% volume, it can fill a medium-sized room. The bass response is not too bad for a speaker this size. Mids have clarity and highs are bright and forward but are not too piercing sharp to listen to. The soundstage is quite shallow and the instrument separation isn't too good either but that is typical because of its size. Compared to the original Home Mini, the Nest Mini is stronger in term of bass performance as well as louder in volume and fuller overall.

Connectivity & Portability

The Nest Mini also includes Bluetooth 5.0 support and of course, smart assistant support for smart home products like Chromecast, smart lighting and many others. Got a question about something you want to know or be notified of the weather, just ask. It's that simple and just seem to work flawlessly. Whether it's being commanded to stream music from Spotify or play movies from Netflix, I have experienced a high 95% of accurate recognition. Using the Google Home app, which is available for download on the App Store and Play Store, was a breeze. The app recognises the speaker every time and allows users to view and select songs, control the playback as well as volume and connect to other Google Nest and Home products. Inside the box, you will also find a 15W power brick for powering the speaker. The speaker comes in 4 different colours, Chalk, Coral, Sky and Charcoal, to fit your interior furnishings. 

PROS

  • Durable construction

  • Simplistic design and style

  • Balanced Sound Signature

  • 360° Sound

  • Bluetooth Enabled

  • A Range of Colours

  • App Support

CONS

  • Requires DC Power

  • No audio-out Port

  • Not Splash-proof

The Bottom Line

The Google Nest Mini is the ultimate first-step go-to smart speaker that one can buy without spending a fortune if you are just starting out in building your own smart home. With far-field voice recognition microphones, a bright sound signature and durable build, it complements your desk setup or acts as a bedside table addition.

Other Notable Competitors

AMAZON ECHO DOT 3RD GENERATION
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