Sometimes innovation is about solving a problem, filling a gap in the market and answering what the public has been crying out for. And sometimes it’s just jamming two things together will illogical but pleasing results.

Lava’s Brightsounds speaker is a lovely example of the latter. Lava have jammed together a bluetooth speaker and a lamp – something I would never have predicted I needed, and for the time I had testing it, I couldn’t put it down.

Nominally a great camping and beachside device, if you like to putter around the house listening to podcasts the Brightsounds is a great companion – especially with its little rubber handle. The unit similar in size and feel to an old-timey lantern, and I found myself wandering across the building talking like an old prospector. Brightsounds can take a beating, holding an IPX4 rating. Light splashes seemed fine and the casual drops and bangs didn’t affect playback but I’d be waring about inflicting serious damage.

Lave Brightsounds

As a speaker it won’t any awards, but it’s far from bad. The ultrawide 5W speaker packs a room-filling punch with no distortion. It’s not a bass monster but I found the sound mix to be generally pleasing. All in battery life is about 9 hours and charging and connectivity are all the usual suspects.

As a light it could be fancier – I was half expecting a smart-light ala Philips Hue, with the ability to be controlled via my smartphone and a range of colours and shades. That ‘s a dumb expectation – it’s a £40 light and speaker combo. Still a boy can dream. It can be dynamically dimmed to serve as a night light, have a chilled out glow or really beam, so it’s pretty fancy.

Maybe the Brightsounds isn’t for everyone. But at only £40 it probably should be.