Mackie Thump Go 8: Merging Professional Expertise with Bluetooth Convenience
Mackie, renowned for outfitting stages and recording studios with professional audio gear, has ventured into the world of Bluetooth-enabled sound systems with the Mackie Thump Go 8. This robust and imposing speaker, standing nearly half a meter tall, combines Mackie’s extensive expertise with modern Bluetooth technology, promising a portable PA system experience. True to its brand slogan, the Thump Go 8 is built tough, encased in sturdy plastic with a protective metal grille. Underneath the hood, it houses a 1-inch compression chamber tweeter horn and an 8-inch bass-midrange driver, promising a powerful sound. Despite its size, the Thump Go 8 is conveniently portable, thanks to a well-placed handle on the back. Additionally, it can be mounted on a tripod, and Mackie offers a compatible steel frame as an accessory.
|Mackie Thump Go|
|Concept:||Bluetooth speaker with power supply and battery|
|assembly||1-inch tweeter horn, 8-inch bass-midrange driver|
|Special feature:||Tweeter horn, 2-channel mixer, app|
|Inputs/Outputs:||XLR, 6,35-mm-Klinke / XLR|
|Dimensions (W x H x D):||45,7 x 23 x 28,5, cm|
Integrated Mixer for Versatile Performance
Mackie has considered various use cases for the Thump Go 8. While they offer separate mixing consoles that can connect to the Thump Go through its two balanced XLR or 6.35 mm jack inputs, the speaker itself boasts a 2-channel mixer. This feature enables users to blend music from Bluetooth sources with signals from microphones or musical instruments, making it suitable for karaoke or impromptu performances. A master fader controls the overall volume, putting users in command of their sound.
Customizable Sound and Effects
On the control and connection panel, the Thump Go 8 offers sound presets, catering to both indoor and outdoor environments. The Mackie Thump Connect 2 app, available for iOS and Android, provides even more control. Users can access four voicing modes, an equalizer, and professional settings like a feedback eliminator and music ducking, enhancing the speaker’s versatility.
Stereo Operation and Expandability
For a wider soundstage, users can opt for stereo operation by pairing two Mackie Thump Go 8 speakers via Bluetooth. Alternatively, multiple speakers can be linked together via the symmetrical XLR output to provide ample volume for larger gatherings.
Power and Battery Performance
The Thump Go 8 doesn’t compromise on power. Integrated Class D amplifiers deliver a total of 200 watts, with 175 watts dedicated to the woofer and 25 watts to the tweeter. The speaker’s design, with a vertically-oriented horn, benefits from laying it on its side when not mounted on a tripod at ear level. An interesting detail is the rotatable Mackie logo on the speaker grille.
Quick and Tool-Free Battery Replacement
One standout feature of the Thump Go 8 is its flexible power source. It includes an integrated power supply with an official Schuco plug and a lithium-ion battery, providing up to 12 hours of playtime. What sets it apart is the tool-free battery replacement, allowing users to easily swap out the battery when needed. This not only promotes sustainability but also ensures the party can go on without worrying about power.
Impressive Sound Quality
In our listening tests, the Mackie Thump Go 8 lived up to its professional lineage. It outshone typical Bluetooth speakers in terms of attack, sound fullness, and distortion-free maximum volume. The speaker’s performance was nothing short of a stage experience. Even complex musical passages retained their dynamism and detail.
Live-Like Sound Reproduction
The speaker faithfully reproduced the live feel of music. Instruments had room to breathe, and every nuance was conveyed with impressive dynamics. The drum accompaniment was particularly noteworthy, delivering a punch that surpassed not only typical speakers in its class but also most Bluetooth speakers on the market.
While voices were presented with a directness that some might find slightly unforgiving, the overall tonal balance was convincing. It’s worth noting that the Thump Go 8 missed only a hint of the airiness found in high-end speakers.
An Affordable Professional
Considering its professional features and substantial size, the Thump Go 8’s €400 list price appears remarkably reasonable. This sentiment was reinforced during our listening tests. The speaker’s attack, fullness, and distortion-free performance put many Bluetooth speakers in its price range to shame.
A Bargain for Dynamic Sound
The Mackie Thump Go 8 is an enticing option for audiophiles who crave dynamics and precision in their music playback. While its tonal balance leans slightly more rustic compared to traditional hi-fi speakers, within the realm of Bluetooth speakers, the Thump Go 8 stands as a pinnacle of bandwidth, precision, and authenticity.
Mackie, although not as widely recognized as JBL or Marshall in the consumer sector, offers a hidden gem in the Thump Go 8. It presents a professional-grade audio experience without the steep price tag. If you appreciate dynamics and precision in your music, the Mackie Thump Go 8 is sure to impress. While its tonal character may lean toward a more direct presentation, it excels in delivering a wide soundstage, precise dynamics, and authentic sound reproduction. For those seeking an affordable yet professional-grade Bluetooth speaker, the Thump Go 8 is a compelling choice that defies its price point.
- Professional-Grade Sound: The Mackie Thump Go 8 delivers a dynamic and high-quality sound experience that rivals traditional professional audio equipment. It’s perfect for those who appreciate precise and impactful sound.
- Built-in Mixer: With a 2-channel mixer, this speaker offers flexibility for different use cases. You can easily blend music from Bluetooth sources with microphone or instrument signals, making it suitable for karaoke and impromptu performances.
- Customization and Control: The Thump Go 8 provides sound presets and a range of effects, which can be conveniently adjusted through the Mackie Thump Connect 2 app. This level of control allows you to fine-tune your sound to suit various environments and preferences.
- Stereo Operation: You have the option to create a wider soundstage by pairing two Thump Go 8 speakers via Bluetooth, enhancing the overall audio experience.
- Quick Battery Replacement: The tool-free battery replacement feature is a standout. It not only promotes sustainability but also ensures uninterrupted use by allowing easy battery swaps.
- Tonal Character: The speaker’s tonal balance leans slightly more rustic compared to traditional hi-fi speakers, which may not suit listeners looking for a more neutral or airy sound.
- Vertical Sound Projection: The speaker’s horn design concentrates sound more vertically than horizontally. If not placed at ear level on a tripod, you may need to lay it on its side to achieve the best sound dispersion.
- Size and Weight: While the Thump Go 8’s size and weight are manageable, it’s larger and heavier than typical consumer Bluetooth speakers. This could affect its portability for some users.
- Professional Look: The speaker’s design and appearance lean towards a professional aesthetic, which may not match everyone’s preference for a casual or home setting.
- Price Range: While reasonably priced considering its professional features, the Thump Go 8 may still be on the higher end of the budget for users seeking an affordable Bluetooth speaker.