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Woojer Vest Pro Review - The Sub-Subwoofer Experience

This is a vest that vibrates you when you expect to hear bass. It's pretty neat, if you can set it up correctly.

14 days ago

Latest Post Woojer Vest Pro Review - The Sub-Subwoofer Experience by Kyle public

For April Fool's Day this year, we at Den-Fi wanted to do something fun, but also useful beyond today. A few months ago, I bought this Woojer Vest Pro on eBay after doing almost no research, not even knowing if it would work with my setup. I just wanted a fun toy and at around $130 shipped. If it worked, it might be one of the most fun audio toys I'd own.

I have a problem I want to be solved, in some form. I love the visceral feeling of bass. But, I also love living in a city. I love being able to walk to a variety of restaurants and use public transportation to get to most places I don't want to walk to. I don't, however, have the budget to spend 7-figures on a house in the city. I currently live in a non-first floor apartment, which means I don't have the ability to use a subwoofer without disturbing my downstairs neighbor. My love for bass is currently incompatible with my love for the city. This is where the Woojer Vest Pro comes in.

How to Use 

The Vest Pro connects to a computer or phone through Bluetooth or USB. It has a 3.5mm jack to plug a headphone in so you can stream through it, but what's the point in having all this audio gear if I can't combine my carefully curated chain with this ridiculous vest? Luckily, there's an (unfortunate) answer: Roon. Roon allows for grouped zones so I am able to combine my DAC's zone with the Woojer's Zone, as long as I have it connected to USB.

So now I'm able to use both the Woojer and my Exogal Comet DAC at the same time. I paired my Comet with my Luxman L550A and ZMF Caldera and...

...it works! Well, it sort of works. I get the rumble, but it's not perfect. There's a little bit of latency, which I expected, but that's an easy fix. In the Audio Settings tab in Roon, I adjusted latency on the Comet and landed on 65ms:

It's not perfect, but it's certainly more cohesive than the original setting and syncs decently with music.

Performance

Now that it's usable, how does it perform?

Remember the Skullcandy Crusher? It's like that, but on my whole torso. It's a lot of fun, but it's fatiguing after about half an hour at max bass, and I'm not going to bother using this if I'm not maxxing out the bass since the Vest itself has to be almost uncomfortably tight to get maximum body contact.

I do get the visceral feeling of bass without really getting much articulation, not unlike the feeling of bass at a club, except when I wear this, I feel like someone that would never be let into a club. It's actually a pretty interesting sensation; I'm not really sacrificing anything in terms of actual sound because I'm still using the headphone chain I'd normally be using, but I augment that experience with these incredibly strong, if artificial-feeling, vibrations.

I've only been able to treat the Woojer as a fun little novelty because most of the music I actually listen to doesn't benefit from this, but the rare instance where I do want bass, I've found a better pairing with the Vest than the Caldera: the Nightjar Singularity:

This is peak guilty pleasure stupid bass. At least, until I have the ability to use subwoofers myself. It's not realistic in any sense of the word, but just like that extra piece of cake that I shouldn't have, I don't care.  

There is one very noticeable downside to using the Vest Pro with anything that doesn't isolate: at most noticeable levels of vibration, the plastic does make some noise that makes it less than ideal for use with open headphones or, one of my original goals for this thing, speakers. I've tried watching a movie with the Vest Pro but beyond the discomfort, trying to use the Vest Pro to simulate cinema vibrations was met with the rattle of the motors. It also gets pretty warm after about half an hour. It almost feels nice, but it's also somewhat worrying for something wrapped around my body to be getting warm.

I can only speak for this particular older model, but it is rather unfortunate that it makes so much noise, as this would be a fun thing to use as a stand in for a subwoofer for people in similar situations as mine.

Conclusion

I hate to admit it, but I do really like the potential of the Woojer Vest Pro. I'm interested in seeing if their newer models improve on the noise, as this is a fun novelty. It absolutely isn't a product I can widely recommend, as there are too many prerequisites for me to be able to enjoy using it. But, if one already uses Roon or has another method of adjusting latency, doesn't mind the discomfort, and can suspend their disbelief while using it, the Vest is actually a fun novelty that I will continue to use.

I'm happy to answer any questions regarding my experience with the Woojer Vest Pro, but I definitely won't be able to provide any useful tech support.

Kyle

Published 14 days ago

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