When was the last time you heard about the brand Creative Labs? They were very popular back in the late 90s and early 2000s with their awesome Sound Blaster sound cards for PC. I know this because I owned two Sound Blaster sound cards and a 5.1 Creative Labs speaker system at home. Their speaker systems back then were one of the best I’ve used.
Fast forward to this moment, Creative Labs is still producing awesome audio systems from earphones, headphones, audio sound cards, audio decks and various speaker setups. And right now, I have their latest audio model with me for review, namely the Creative Labs Stage Air V2 soundbar.
I have a thing with speakers. In this case, a soundbar. I love having good surround audio in my man cave. At the moment, I am using a simple 2.1 speaker system where I placed the left/right speakers at each left and right corner of my room while the subwoofer is sitting on the floor in the middle, where my table is. That is probably the simplest audio setup anyone can use with a 2.1 speaker system for a good surround sound.
Creative Labs Stage Air V2 Design and Features
Now when it comes to soundbars, there will only be one single speaker device that works as the “tweeter” and the bass component. The same goes with the Creative Labs Stage Air V2 that I have in review. I assume that the Creative Labs Stage Air V2 has two small speakers on each side while the “woofer” sits in the middle.
The overall design of the Creative Labs Stage Air V2 is pretty simple. It only comes in black colour, which I think is to create discretion so that it is easily hidden away for a clutter-free desktop. Then there’s the power and volume rocker buttons on the right side along with the source selector. The Creative Labs Stage Air V2 supports USB Audio via the USB-C port at the back which also acts as the charging port for the built-in 2200mAh battery that can go for a good 6 hours of playback time.
If you don’t want to use the USB Audio, you can always pair the Creative Labs Stage Air V2 with your phone via Bluetooth. Great when you’re going out for a picnic with your family. It supports Bluetooth 5.3 for a very low latency connection so that you can watch a movie without having any audio sync problems. Or better yet, use it for gaming. The low latency helps with the response time so that whatever you do, you’re always in sync with your teammates.
You can still plug in the standard 3.5mm audio connector to the Creative Labs Stage Air V2 if you wish to save the USB port for something else. So besides having the USB Audio and the Bluetooth connectivity, the Creative Labs Stage Air V2 is still compatible with any older audio source such as an old turntable.
Now let me dive in on the audio quality produced by the Creative Labs Stage Air V2 soundbar.
Audio Quality Test
The size of the soundbar is pretty small compared to those that come with a subwoofer. You know which one I’m talking about right? The Creative Labs Stage Air V2 is tiny by comparison to those giant ones. But don’t be fooled by the size. This “tiny” soundbar has a few tricks up its sleeves.
First of all, it is made by Creative Labs. They were the masters of the audio makers for PCs back in the days and I believe they are still one of the best audio companies in its class. I’m not trying to compare them with the audio giants out there but they are good nonetheless. Secondly, don’t judge the book by its cover.
The Creative Labs Stage Air V2 may be smaller than the others but it can deliver hard stomping bass with a nice crystal clear high and mid range audio for an immersive acoustic music. While it doesn’t excel in surround sound for an obvious reason, it still delivers a satisfying listening experience for me and my neighbours. Oh yes, the Creative Labs Stage Air V2 can be loud. Very loud. The highest volume can rock the whole house and more without breaking a tune.
Usually when you have a small sized speaker or soundbar like this, the high volume doesn’t sound great. It kinda feels like the speaker is being torn apart. But the Creative Labs Stage Air V2 soundbar handles the immense volume with ease. The highs and the mids sounded clear and well balanced. And the bass is superbly stomping away without breaking. I can vouch that the Creative Labs Stage Air V2 soundbar has a really powerful bass for its size. That was the biggest surprise for me.
The first time I blasted a song with the Creative Labs Stage Air V2 soundbar, it literally blew me away. I played Metallica’s Enter Sandman and those who know the song well, the beginning of the song is all about hard hitting bass from the drums. When that part is playing, I hit the volume to high just to hear what happens. That’s when I got my biggest surprise. It does not break and the bass is hard and solid. I absolutely love it. You know the sound is good when you headbang non stop until the song ends.
Since the Creative Labs Stage Air V2 soundbar is Bluetooth enabled and portable, I took it outside for a test to hear how it sounds outdoors. In a confined room, the sound can be heard better but when you’re out in the open space, it will be different. But during my outdoor test, the Creative Labs Stage Air V2 soundbar performed just as good. It is so good that one of my neighbours gave me a long distance high-five a few times. Either it could be a high-five or a gesture for me to stop the music. I can’t really make it out since it’s night time and it’s quite dark.
Not bad for a 20W peak power output soundbar. All I can say is that the Creative Labs Stage Air V2 is a fuss-free easy-to-setup soundbar for your home entertainment system or as a simple audio system. All you have to do is plug in the port of your choice, turn it on and you’re ready to rock. I love the fact that it is relatively small and compact, portable but yet powerful enough to deliver a satisfying sound quality whether it be indoors or outdoors.
If you’re looking for an affordable soundbar, don’t bother to look any further because the Creative Labs Stage Air V2 will suit your needs. It is good for many occasions – gaming, listening to music, having a picnic outdoors, watching movies or simply having it with you in the office. Your colleagues will headbang along with you while you’re being escorted to the HR’s office.
Head over to the Creative Labs website from the following link to know more and to make the purchase. The Creative Labs Stage Air V2 is retailing for only US$40 (~RM175).
More info and purchase: https://bit.ly/Creative_StageAirV2_Ohsem