In an abundant sea of speakers of all forms and sizes, Saregama's Carvaan has always stood out and the all-new Carvaan Gold is the perfected version in the entire series. After launching multiple variants of Carvaans, Saregama's Carvaan Premium did the trick and found a place in consumers' wishlist. But it looks like the journey doesn't end there as Carvaan Gold uplifted the standards even though there are no competitors for the speaker in a one-of-its-kind category.
Saregama Carvaan Gold is available in India for a premium price tag of Rs 14,990. While any quality speaker would easily demand such a price, what Carvaan Gold has to offer for that price is more than just a regular Bluetooth speaker.
We've had the Carvaan Gold for a few days and reviewing it has been more than just testing a product. Carvaan Gold is a complete package for those who love the classic collection of songs and play them anytime, anywhere. No internet or songs on your phone to pair and play? Carvaan Gold has you covered. The trove of thousands of classic songs is sure to bring back a flood of memories from back in the day when you heard the songs growing up.
From my brief time with Carvaan Gold, here's how it found it to be a part of a new routine. Everything from design to the quality of the sound, Carvaan Gold doesn't seize to impress.
I've always admired the classic radio-style design of the Carvaan speakers and the Carvaan Gold is the most premium and posh looking speaker from the company. It has a metallic body, which gives that extra fine finish and weighs almost 2kg. But carrying the speaker using its handle doesn't feel heavy.
The gold and a rose gold mix is a nice touch. The rest of the design remains largely the same as previous models. There's a tiny display to show what's playing, three physical buttons for Artists, Specials and Geetmala and a large round dial for navigating between artists, albums and songs. On the right panel are four buttons for Saregama radio, FM radio, Bluetooth and AUX cable modes. The power button is on the top and on the left panel there is a volume rocker and a 3.5mm jack.
Finally, on the back, there's a charging connector, USB port and a reset button.
Older versions of Carvaan have been average performers, but the latest Carvaan Gold has been fine-tuned to deliver the optimum quality of sound. The biggest upgrade in the Carvaan Gold is the Harman Kardon tuning in the five built-in speakers. The difference is quite evident as compared to the previous models, and gets all the details and vocals right.
During the review period, Carvaan Gold served a great evening pastime to go with snacks and some tea. Almost all of the songs in the song were more relevant and enjoyed by my dad more than me, but the Bluetooth and AUX options came in handy to get some new grooves playing.
I loved how the built-in collection was handled, with good vocals and clear audio. I usually set the volume to below 50 percent, and it worked great. However, tuning into some latest tracks made me see the bass and treble wasn't as great as expected. It's as if the Carvaan Gold is built to listening to the classics.
While AUX connections served perfectly well for some playback and movie streaming when connected to the laptop, doing the same over Bluetooth wasn't as great. Clearly, the lack of aptX was felt in the Carvaan Gold, and it's something that could offer great value to those spending the top dollar on this speaker cum jukebox.
As I said, Carvaan Gold is meant for those classics. There's no shortage of the good-old collection from legendary artists, such as Kishore Kumar, Lata Mangeshkar, Amitabh Bachchan, Rekha, R.D. Burman, Anand Bakshi, Gulzar and Laxmikant Pyarelal. In addition to all that, there's every single episode of the legendary Ameen Sayani's Geetmala and 130 dedicated music stations.
I was assured by my dad's response to the collection in Carvaan Gold that it is indeed gold and he's a hardcore classic music lover.
I would say the modern touch in the Carvaan Gold is a hit and miss affair. There's Bluetooth, but no aptX support and the lack of bass and treble doesn't really make today's tracks sound too great. But that's just for audiophiles and if you are not much into the details then Carvaan Gold checks all the right boxes.
With my usage, I was able to get 6-7 hours on a single charge every single time, which is good enough to last through an entire jamming session.
Seeing the Carvaan Gold as an overall package, I would say the Harman Kardon integration is a worthy touch. But it is still a relevant product for your parents and grandparents. But if you have a taste for classic music, this surely is the best option out there. The old songs in the Carvaan Gold allowing for endless offline playback is priceless. You'd be better off spending Rs 14,990 for the speaker instead of tracking down all those songs.
And if you're looking for a unique gifting idea for your parents, you just cannot go wrong with Carvaan Gold. But do note that the new Carvaan speaker is riding high on the nostalgia factor more than anything else.