A general trend which has been emerging with Bluetooth speakers of late, is to make them as compact as possible. The benefit of this downsizing, is that they become more portable (another developing trend). The downside of this is that you do compromise in certain areas and most typically, the bottom end. Bass becomes less intense the smaller speakers become. Of course, not all products from all manufacturers follow the recent trends and there are some which actually flat out revert back to the golden age of speakers. House of Marley is a company which draws much inspiration from yesteryear with many of their products and the Get Up Stand Up system is no exception. This speaker reverts back to the times when things were heavy, boomy and big.
In terms of the specs, the House of Marley Get Up Stand Up comes equipped with two 4.5-inch drivers to accommodate the mid-to-lower frequencies. Accompanying the drivers and providing more of the top range frequencies are two 1-inch high-definition tweeters. In terms of the frequency response, we are looking at a range of 20 Hz to 20 kHz. Wireless connections on the House of Marley Get Up Stand up are established over Bluetooth A2DP/APTX. While there is also the option to connect wired devices with a 3.5 mm stereo jack input on offer, along with stereo RCA ports, In terms of the dimensions, the House of Marley Get Up Stand Up measures 13-inches in height, 23.7-inch in width and 10-inches in depth, while weighing in at 15.6 lb (7 kg).
Design & Hardware
There has been another trend of late, where Bluetooth speaker manufacturers look to adopt a more modern speaker design and look. While this is keeping with the times, another way to look at it – is they are stepping away from the more iconic look of how a speaker should look. In short, less speaker like. This is clearly not the case when it comes to the Get Up Stand Up System from House of Marley. Straight out of the box this speaker elicits immediate memories of what speakers are supposed to look like.
The general design of the speaker is one which clearly places an emphasis on the wood cabinet style that you would have encountered back in the day. The wood in use is FSC Birch wood which comes with a walnut veneer over the top. So immediately we are looking at something which would be difficult to date, based on looks alone. The front of the speaker offers a very clear view of all the hardware you are getting inside. Both 4-inches drivers are on show with each one flanked by one of the two 1-inch tweeters. The House of Marley logo completes the front view adopting a centered positioning.
The top of the speaker is where you will find the more modernized aspects with all the controls positioned together. Buttons on offer include Bluetooth pairing button, the volume up button, volume down button and the power button.
At this point it is worth pointing out that as the Get Up Stand Up adopts more of a cabinet look, it does lack a traditional box shape and instead is more similar in shape to what you would get with a car boot sub or a stage monitor with sloping sides and back. While the controls are top positioned, the sides and the rest of the top then slopes down to a smaller back plate.
In terms of that plate, here you will find most of the connection ports. In terms of the ‘ins’, we have two auxiliary ports. The first is a 3.5 mm jack socket for direct connection of a digital device or stereo plug. The second auxiliary port is a dual RCA port for connecting more analog based inputs. The back also houses the main DC in port for the power lead and completely the rear line up is a USB out. Which allows for charging of USB powered devices while connected.
Moving on, the bottom of the speaker is largely left undisturbed and simply is a base including rubber feet completing the look. The left-hand side also remains undisturbed while the right-hand side includes a recessed handle for the odd number when you might need to carry the speaker.
Sound Quality & Performance
With a Bluetooth speaker this size, two 4.5-inch drivers, a birch wood enclosure and coming from a company with a focus on Marley, it does not leave much to the imagination in terms of what you are getting here…bass…and lots of it. If you are someone looking for a bass-heavy Bluetooth speaker then this really should be an option you are looking to get. Generally speaking, Bluetooth Speakers are often left wanting when it comes to bass and that is simply not a scenario you are going to encounter with the Get Up and Stand Up system. This one is clearly designed to give you the maximum level of bass a unit of this size can do. The drivers, mixed with a birch enclosure ensure that the bass is a rather realistic and deep bass (for the size), while the power on offer helps to ensure that the bass is loud enough to really provide the boom you are looking from a Bluetooth speaker.
However, and for some, this might be a big however. The bass is also where the Get Up Stand Up hits a hurdle. The bass undoubtedly results in this system being extremely low-end heavy. House of Marley has tried to mitigate against this by ensuring the system has dedicated tweeters and 1-inch sized ones at that. However, they are simply not enough to counteract the overbearing bass. Likewise, with the adoption of a 2-way system, the mids do seem to get lost somewhere in between the bass and tops.
So the reality of the sound quality is largely dependent on where your frequency focus resides. If you are someone who does prefer a greater and deeper low-end and are willing to compromise on the mids and tops a little, then you will not be disappointed and especially considering this is a Bluetooth speaker. However, if you are more looking for a more balanced output which requires little tweaking or any addition forcing of frequencies through the use of an external EQ, then you might not be so keen on the quality on offer here. One thing is for sure, this is a bassy little unit.
Battery Life & Connectivity
It is worth immediately pointing out that the House of Marley Get Up Stand Up System is not one which can be used without being connected to a wall socket. Although, this is a Bluetooth speaker, it is not a portable one and does not contain a battery. In fairness, this should be expected as this is not a small speaker and its size does dictate that it is not one which you will likely be carrying around with you or needing a separate or dedicated battery.
In terms of connectivity however, this is a Bluetooth speaker and as such, the expected maximum distance of a connected device is about 33 feet (roughly 10 meters). In terms of testing, there were no notable issues with the quality of the connection established with the Get Up Stand Up system. When a connection was made, the connection remained a solid connection at all times without dropping off or down. Likewise, there did not seem to be any issues with the expected distance either. The Get Up Stand Up system was able to maintain a solid connection even when connected to a target device which was some distance away from the speaker. In both quality and sustainability of the connectivity, you will not be disappointed.
The Get Up Stand Up system is one which certainly does make its presence known. While Bluetooth speakers in general seem to be going down the route of being more compact, more smaller and more portable, the Get Up Stand Up bucks this trend by returning to the more classic style and design of what a speaker looks and performs like. This is designed to be more reminiscent of the ‘good ol days’ in speaker history and to be honest, the Get Up Stand Up does it well. The speaker does look like a vintage style speaker and does perform like one too. If this is the style you are after, then you can’t go wrong with the House of Marley Get Up Stand Up System.
Should You buy the House of Marley Get Up Stand Up System?
Well, let’s get one thing straight. If you like bass then yes. You are unlikely to find another Bluetooth speaker at this price point which offers a similar level of bass. This is a bass monster. However, if you are not so bass inclined, this might not be the option for you. This is meant for those who want that extra boom boom.