The Good: The Filo has a very stylish and compact design, is well built and sounds great in the mid-range. Also sounds very good over Bluetooth, comparable to a “plugged-in” experience.
The Bad: Treble lacks definition and based purely on overall performance, the IN2UIT Filo faces stiff competition at its £189 price point.
The Bottom Line: A great speaker for the design-conscious customer, but the discerning listener may want more for their money.
Speakers tend to have an unmistakable look to them, don’t they? If it isn’t the classic boxed shape that doesn’t give them away, it’ll likely be the playback buttons or mesh grill covering the speaker cones.
IN2UIT’s Filo speaker doesn’t quite fit in to that stereotype, and much like its older brother — the IN2UIT Collage — I’ve had a hard time convincing people it as a speaker at all. Well, until it made a loud beeping sound when I turned it on, that is.
The brand certainly does a good job of making their speakers look like a work of art, and while the Collage sounded pretty impressive, I wanted to find out whether IN2UIT’s £189 Filo speaker lived up to the same reputation.
OTHER IN2UIT PRODUCT REVIEWS:
- IN2UIT Collage Bluetooth Speaker Review: A Blend Of Performance & Style
- IN2UIT Boompack iPad Speaker Case Review
Design & Build Quality
Thanks to electrostatic technology, IN2UIT manages to give the Filo very thin speaker panels.
Thanks to the electrostatic technology IN2UIT uses in their speakers, the Filo’s speaker panels are very, very thin. We’ll get on to the performance implications of that later, but judging from an aesthetic point of view it’s hard not to be impressed.
You won’t find any playback controls or fancy gimmicks on the front of the speaker; IN2UIT opted for a simple power button which is cleverly concealed behind a folded part of of the speaker panel, at the top of the unit. It sort of reminds me of a thin sheet of paper folding over itself, and whether that design feature was intentional or not — I like it.
That power button also activates Bluetooth pairing. Just hold it down for a few seconds until the small light on the front panel flashes red & blue, and connect via your device’s Bluetooth settings. During my time with the Filo, it has connected flawlessly every time.
Top-down view of “folding” speaker panel & power button.
Taking in to account the dimensions of the Filo, it feels surprisingly sturdy when you set it up, which simply involves flipping out the kickstand found at the back of the unit. The whole thing is quite lightweight so it’s likely to shift around easily with a bit of movement, even though the kickstand gives it some extra resistance against that.
Even with its slim form factor, the IN2UIT Filo manages to pack in a battery that gives it up to 10 hours operation, allowing you to use it as a portable speaker or just placed away from the power plug. Portable use is convenient and all, but the winning point for me is being able to set it up anywhere in the house without needing to plug it in.
The IN2UIT Filo comes with an embedded kickstand for easy setup anywhere.
Despite packing a single 2-inch woofer, the IN2UIT Filo certainly isn’t designed to be the focal point of a party with booming sound. Don’t get me wrong, it provides a subtle amount of bass, but hardly enough to noticeably liven up a hip-hop or dance track — no matter how much you fiddle with the equaliser settings.
Listening to tracks like Waves by Mr. Probz and Bailando by Enrique Iglesias, I found that the two electrostatic speaker panels sound at their best in the mid-range, with the vocals really standing out above the bass and treble. The treble in particular wasn’t too impressive though; lacking the kind of definition I’d expect from a speaker at this price.
Ultimately, any songs that are heavy on vocals will sound fantastic on the Filo. Once you start playing tracks that need that extra oomph though, you’ll quickly find that the speaker struggles to keep up and you’ll need something much more powerful. And at a price of £189, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t expect better.
From a connectivity point of view: the Apt-X Bluetooth technology IN2UIT uses was impressive, producing a sound quality that’s comparable to a wired sound connection.
The IN2UIT Filo doesn’t have the kind of hardware you need for more ‘demanding’ uses or audiophile-grade sound, and that’s OK, it’s not meant to. This is the kind of speaker you have in the bedroom to play some wind-down music, or in the kitchen while you cook. And with its stylish yet deceiving design, it’s sure to add a touch of style wherever you put it.
Let me emphasise that the Filo sounds good, but as with the IN2UIT Collage, the real value you get is in the combination of style & good sound.
The bottom line? A discerning listener might not be as enticed by the sound quality of the Filo, but the design-conscious customer who just wants something to play some background music is going to love this.