DingDong LLSS-A1 Voice-Activated Smart Home Speaker Review
Author:Soomal
Source:eng.soomal.com

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DingDong LLSS-A1 is a special speaker rather than traditional speakers. Labeled on smart, it is called Musical Robot in its official documents. While as a speaker, it can also be an assistant for you to act like Siri or Cortana and serve as a voice-activated smart home speaker controller. Its manufacturer is not a traditional one, it is designed and manufactured by a joint venture Linglong founded by Jingdong and IFLYTEK. Its market targets not only include the speaker market but also wish to play a role in Smart Home.

Hardware

Shaped in column, the section of the top of DingDong LLSS-A1 is a circle as well as a round-corner square in the bottom, the transition in the middle is smooth. With a small size of 242mm high and 114mm wide, it doesn't take up much room. What you need to pay attention to is that it has no main or sub speaker, for the two are contained in one. The shell of the speaker has a round mesh surface; thus the whole speaker is the same. The speaker has four colors, including red, white, black and purple. The purple one is New Oriental version, which is for English practice, others are standard versions.

The shell of the speaker is not the whole acoustic cabinet, tear the speaker down and the inner structure can be seen. There is a circuit board on the top, then the acoustic structure that includes two independent acoustic cabinets and between it there has a gap more than 1cm. Four 2.5-inch cone speakers are equipped in the bottom of the device and are all face to different directions so that the speaker can be placed casually. Another speaker is equipped downward on the top of the device, which will squeeze the air between the two devices in the bottom while working. Such a design brings more powerful bass hearing, but this kind of design is not the first, for it can be seen in other similar products such as in Bose and Edifier¡¯s. Actually, this design is originated from 2.1, so the inverted tube is equivalent to a sub speaker. Such a smart design fully uses the limited space, which made the center of gravity at the lower body of speaker so that it will not fall easily. This all-in-one design also has some disadvantages, for instance, the stereo imaging must be very low, just like other mono speakers.

During the process of tear down, we found a mid-power chip with digital amplifier named TI TAS5731M. Though its power is not strong, but it is suitable for LLSS-A1. It supports dual channel I2S, connects with main control chip and provides the most compact power amplification. With a function of DSP, it makes sounds more comfortable. The electro-acoustical conversion efficiency of this chip is up to 90%. With power saving and low heating, TI TAS5731M is an suitable chip for this always-on LLSS-A1.

There are two circuit boards are on the top, the upper one has integrated several necessary parts of the smart device, including a processor, a RAM chip, a nand flash memory, WIFI and Bluetooth 4.0 module that supports wireless protocol and a power management chip.

The processor of the speaker is Allwinner R16, which is a Cortex-A7 Quad-Core processor which integrates display, memory management, audio system and other subsystems, as well as CODEC, which is called Hi-Fi by Allwinner officially. This processor is a chip of Internet of Things, which is a kind of higher end product.

LLSS-A1 runs on a modified operating system, which is used for controlling hardware and upgrading. Therefore, matching RAM and RAM are relatively large, for which has a flash memory of 4GB and a RAM of 512MB. However, most simple devices of Internet of Things only need several MBs of RAM and flash memory. LLSS-A1 has multi-functions, and the demand for its performance is higher than general devices of Internet of Things. It's no surprise to see it is equipped with R16, independent RAM and flash memory, however, these elements only use one independent circuit board.

There is an array formed by eight microphones in another circuit board that is used for monitoring voice commands of the owner and send messages to system to react right away.

With these elements as a foundation for "intelligent", it connects to the internet like smart phones and understand the commands like human. So it will not be a surprise to see it realizes interaction and function upgrading by the built-in software. This is the reason why LLSS-A1 differs from traditional speakers and why it is possible to create a new way of controlling.

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