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#1 Ultimate Ears BOOM 2 LE

This was the winner of the 2017 Trusted Reviews award for Best Home Audio Product. Ruark is perhaps best known for its class-leading DAB radios and all-in-one hi-fi systems, but this pair of Bluetooth stereo speakers perhaps offer’s the best sound-per-pound of any of the company’s impressive line-up.

[read more=”Read More” less=”Read Less”]

In addition to offering truly excellent hi-fi sonics from gorgeous retro-chic cabinets, the MR1 Mk2 have a ton of versatility tucked behind their designer wool grilles. For a start there’s an optical input, which means they can be hooked up to a TV for boosting audio like a soundbar, and they have a subwoofer output for adding extra meat if you fancy.

Their other neat trick is the optional battery pack, which offers up to 12 hours of portable playback. You don’t have to carry both speakers around, either; the battery can be bolted to just one that becomes a more rucksack-friendly mono unit. Neat.

In other words, there’s basically nothing not to love about the Ruark MR1 Mk2.[/read]

Pros

  •  Amazing sound for their size
  •  Can give a boost to TV audio
  •  Portable option
  •  Sumptuous build and finish
  •  Lovely retro styling

Cons

  • No built-in multiroom support
[amazon box="B06Y4HXNB4" grid="1"]

#2 Fugoo Style S Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker

This was the winner of the 2017 Trusted Reviews award for Best Home Audio Product. Ruark is perhaps best known for its class-leading DAB radios and all-in-one hi-fi systems, but this pair of Bluetooth stereo speakers perhaps offer’s the best sound-per-pound of any of the company’s impressive line-up.

[read more=”Read More” less=”Read Less”]

In addition to offering truly excellent hi-fi sonics from gorgeous retro-chic cabinets, the MR1 Mk2 have a ton of versatility tucked behind their designer wool grilles. For a start there’s an optical input, which means they can be hooked up to a TV for boosting audio like a soundbar, and they have a subwoofer output for adding extra meat if you fancy.

Their other neat trick is the optional battery pack, which offers up to 12 hours of portable playback. You don’t have to carry both speakers around, either; the battery can be bolted to just one that becomes a more rucksack-friendly mono unit. Neat.

In other words, there’s basically nothing not to love about the Ruark MR1 Mk2.[/read]

Pros

  •  Amazing sound for their size
  •  Can give a boost to TV audio
  •  Portable option
  •  Sumptuous build and finish
  •  Lovely retro styling

Cons

  • No built-in multiroom support
[amazon box="B01CQOV3YO" grid="1"]

#3 DOSS Touch Wireless Bluetooth V4.0

Can a furniture shop make good Bluetooth speakers? Actually yes, they can. The Ikea Eneby speakers cost under £100 and are a little basic, but they sound a lot better than the average £45 or £80 speakers. There’s no shortage of volume or power, and there’s no sign of distortion either. There’s a good amount of bass thanks to the not-really-portable cabinet sizes.

[read more=”Read More” less=”Read Less”]

In addition to offering truly excellent hi-fi sonics from gorgeous retro-chic cabinets, the MR1 Mk2 have a ton of versatility tucked behind their designer wool grilles. For a start there’s an optical input, which means they can be hooked up to a TV for boosting audio like a soundbar, and they have a subwoofer output for adding extra meat if you fancy.

Their other neat trick is the optional battery pack, which offers up to 12 hours of portable playback. You don’t have to carry both speakers around, either; the battery can be bolted to just one that becomes a more rucksack-friendly mono unit. Neat.

In other words, there’s basically nothing not to love about the Ruark MR1 Mk2.[/read]

Pros

  • Plenty of power
  •  Good amount of bass
  •  EQ adjustment
  •  Good value
  •  3.5mm input

Cons

  • No built-in multiroom support
[amazon box="B015XIHMQI" grid="1"]

#4 Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Wireless HiFi Speaker

Can a furniture shop make good Bluetooth speakers? Actually yes, they can. The Ikea Eneby speakers cost under £100 and are a little basic, but they sound a lot better than the average £45 or £80 speakers. There’s no shortage of volume or power, and there’s no sign of distortion either. There’s a good amount of bass thanks to the not-really-portable cabinet sizes.

[read more=”Read More” less=”Read Less”]

In addition to offering truly excellent hi-fi sonics from gorgeous retro-chic cabinets, the MR1 Mk2 have a ton of versatility tucked behind their designer wool grilles. For a start there’s an optical input, which means they can be hooked up to a TV for boosting audio like a soundbar, and they have a subwoofer output for adding extra meat if you fancy.

Their other neat trick is the optional battery pack, which offers up to 12 hours of portable playback. You don’t have to carry both speakers around, either; the battery can be bolted to just one that becomes a more rucksack-friendly mono unit. Neat.

In other words, there’s basically nothing not to love about the Ruark MR1 Mk2.[/read]

Pros

  • Plenty of power
  •  Good amount of bass
  •  EQ adjustment
  •  Good value
  •  3.5mm input

Cons

  • No built-in multiroom support
[amazon box="B01LZRFI5C" grid="1"]

#5 Bose soundlink Mini II Limited Edition Bluetooth Speaker

Can a furniture shop make good Bluetooth speakers? Actually yes, they can. The Ikea Eneby speakers cost under £100 and are a little basic, but they sound a lot better than the average £45 or £80 speakers. There’s no shortage of volume or power, and there’s no sign of distortion either. There’s a good amount of bass thanks to the not-really-portable cabinet sizes.

[read more=”Read More” less=”Read Less”]

In addition to offering truly excellent hi-fi sonics from gorgeous retro-chic cabinets, the MR1 Mk2 have a ton of versatility tucked behind their designer wool grilles. For a start there’s an optical input, which means they can be hooked up to a TV for boosting audio like a soundbar, and they have a subwoofer output for adding extra meat if you fancy.

Their other neat trick is the optional battery pack, which offers up to 12 hours of portable playback. You don’t have to carry both speakers around, either; the battery can be bolted to just one that becomes a more rucksack-friendly mono unit. Neat.

In other words, there’s basically nothing not to love about the Ruark MR1 Mk2.[/read]

Pros

  • Plenty of power
  •  Good amount of bass
  •  EQ adjustment
  •  Good value
  •  3.5mm input

Cons

  • No built-in multiroom support
[amazon box="B07BHP4W36" grid="1"]

#6 Soundcore Flare Wireless Bluetooth Speaker

Can a furniture shop make good Bluetooth speakers? Actually yes, they can. The Ikea Eneby speakers cost under £100 and are a little basic, but they sound a lot better than the average £45 or £80 speakers. There’s no shortage of volume or power, and there’s no sign of distortion either. There’s a good amount of bass thanks to the not-really-portable cabinet sizes.

[read more=”Read More” less=”Read Less”]

In addition to offering truly excellent hi-fi sonics from gorgeous retro-chic cabinets, the MR1 Mk2 have a ton of versatility tucked behind their designer wool grilles. For a start there’s an optical input, which means they can be hooked up to a TV for boosting audio like a soundbar, and they have a subwoofer output for adding extra meat if you fancy.

Their other neat trick is the optional battery pack, which offers up to 12 hours of portable playback. You don’t have to carry both speakers around, either; the battery can be bolted to just one that becomes a more rucksack-friendly mono unit. Neat.

In other words, there’s basically nothing not to love about the Ruark MR1 Mk2.[/read]

Pros

  • Plenty of power
  •  Good amount of bass
  •  EQ adjustment
  •  Good value
  •  3.5mm input

Cons

  • No built-in multiroom support
[amazon box="B06XH3B4MK" grid="1"]

#7 WONDERBOOM Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker

Can a furniture shop make good Bluetooth speakers? Actually yes, they can. The Ikea Eneby speakers cost under £100 and are a little basic, but they sound a lot better than the average £45 or £80 speakers. There’s no shortage of volume or power, and there’s no sign of distortion either. There’s a good amount of bass thanks to the not-really-portable cabinet sizes.

[read more=”Read More” less=”Read Less”]

In addition to offering truly excellent hi-fi sonics from gorgeous retro-chic cabinets, the MR1 Mk2 have a ton of versatility tucked behind their designer wool grilles. For a start there’s an optical input, which means they can be hooked up to a TV for boosting audio like a soundbar, and they have a subwoofer output for adding extra meat if you fancy.

Their other neat trick is the optional battery pack, which offers up to 12 hours of portable playback. You don’t have to carry both speakers around, either; the battery can be bolted to just one that becomes a more rucksack-friendly mono unit. Neat.

In other words, there’s basically nothing not to love about the Ruark MR1 Mk2.[/read]

Pros

  • Plenty of power
  •  Good amount of bass
  •  EQ adjustment
  •  Good value
  •  3.5mm input

Cons

  • No built-in multiroom support
[amazon box="B06XYG7B2D" grid="1"]

#8 Bang & Olufsen Beoplay P2 Portable Bluetooth Speaker

Can a furniture shop make good Bluetooth speakers? Actually yes, they can. The Ikea Eneby speakers cost under £100 and are a little basic, but they sound a lot better than the average £45 or £80 speakers. There’s no shortage of volume or power, and there’s no sign of distortion either. There’s a good amount of bass thanks to the not-really-portable cabinet sizes.

[read more=”Read More” less=”Read Less”]

In addition to offering truly excellent hi-fi sonics from gorgeous retro-chic cabinets, the MR1 Mk2 have a ton of versatility tucked behind their designer wool grilles. For a start there’s an optical input, which means they can be hooked up to a TV for boosting audio like a soundbar, and they have a subwoofer output for adding extra meat if you fancy.

Their other neat trick is the optional battery pack, which offers up to 12 hours of portable playback. You don’t have to carry both speakers around, either; the battery can be bolted to just one that becomes a more rucksack-friendly mono unit. Neat.

In other words, there’s basically nothing not to love about the Ruark MR1 Mk2.[/read]

Pros

  • Plenty of power
  •  Good amount of bass
  •  EQ adjustment
  •  Good value
  •  3.5mm input

Cons

  • No built-in multiroom support
[amazon box="B06XCM9LJ4" grid="1"]

#9 Marshall Kilburn II Portable Bluetooth Speaker

If you want all the smart features of an Amazon Echo, but with actually listenable audio, then the UE Blast is the speaker for you. It’s the smaller, more affordable option in Ultimate Ears’ current lineup of smart speakers, sitting underneath the larger, more expensive Megablast.

[read more=”Read More” less=”Read Less”]

In addition to offering truly excellent hi-fi sonics from gorgeous retro-chic cabinets, the MR1 Mk2 have a ton of versatility tucked behind their designer wool grilles. For a start there’s an optical input, which means they can be hooked up to a TV for boosting audio like a soundbar, and they have a subwoofer output for adding extra meat if you fancy.

Their other neat trick is the optional battery pack, which offers up to 12 hours of portable playback. You don’t have to carry both speakers around, either; the battery can be bolted to just one that becomes a more rucksack-friendly mono unit. Neat.

Featuring a robust, waterproof design, insane for its size max volumes, plus built-in Alexa support, the UE Blast easily earns its place as one of this year’s best Bluetooth speakers. The only downsides are that with pricing starting at a whopping £200 it’s fairly pricey, and its bass can be a little warbly for more precise genres.

But even with these compromises it’s a great choice for people looking for an indestructible smart speaker that can be used everywhere from your lounge to the side of a pool. If you’re in the market for a rugged smart speaker then the Blast is one of the best options out there right now.

[/read]

Pros

  • Plenty of power
  •  Good amount of bass
  •  EQ adjustment
  •  Good value
  •  3.5mm input

Cons

  • No built-in multiroom support
[amazon box="B079V81NSG" grid="1"]

#10 Echo (2nd Generation) - Smart speaker with Alexa

If you want all the smart features of an Amazon Echo, but with actually listenable audio, then the UE Blast is the speaker for you. It’s the smaller, more affordable option in Ultimate Ears’ current lineup of smart speakers, sitting underneath the larger, more expensive Megablast.

[read more=”Read More” less=”Read Less”]

In addition to offering truly excellent hi-fi sonics from gorgeous retro-chic cabinets, the MR1 Mk2 have a ton of versatility tucked behind their designer wool grilles. For a start there’s an optical input, which means they can be hooked up to a TV for boosting audio like a soundbar, and they have a subwoofer output for adding extra meat if you fancy.

Their other neat trick is the optional battery pack, which offers up to 12 hours of portable playback. You don’t have to carry both speakers around, either; the battery can be bolted to just one that becomes a more rucksack-friendly mono unit. Neat.

Featuring a robust, waterproof design, insane for its size max volumes, plus built-in Alexa support, the UE Blast easily earns its place as one of this year’s best Bluetooth speakers. The only downsides are that with pricing starting at a whopping £200 it’s fairly pricey, and its bass can be a little warbly for more precise genres.

But even with these compromises it’s a great choice for people looking for an indestructible smart speaker that can be used everywhere from your lounge to the side of a pool. If you’re in the market for a rugged smart speaker then the Blast is one of the best options out there right now.

[/read]

Pros

  • Plenty of power
  •  Good amount of bass
  •  EQ adjustment
  •  Good value
  •  3.5mm input

Cons

  • No built-in multiroom support

40

Researched Sources

20k

Reviews considered

18

Hours Researching

10

Products evaluated

Not convinced the picks we’ve listed above are exactly right for you? This guide will help you sort through the facts, figures, and specs to determine which speaker will best meet your needs. Your first decision will be to choose between mobile and stationary form factors. The majority of Bluetooth speakers are portable because they get paired with mobile phones, but more and more manufacturers are introducing models designed to remain inside the home.

Choosing a portable model gives you the best of both worlds in some respects, but a stationary speaker is more apt to blend into your home’s decor. And while we’ve heard some pretty spectacular portable Bluetooth speakers, a plug-in model is more likely to produce the sound you’re looking for if fidelity is priority one in your book.

Companion apps can provide lots of additional features to a speaker that wouldn’t be possible with just physical buttons on the speaker itself. The app might enable more than one person to be the DJ, queuing up songs to play on the speaker. An app might enable you to create customized EQ curves for different styles of music, create wake-up alarms, or power the speaker on and off remotely.

Next to fidelity, a portable speaker’s most important feature is how long it can operate when it’s not plugged into the wall. You should expect a battery to last 10 to 20 hours, but remember that the bigger the battery, the heavier the speaker will be.

If your speaker has a battery, it will need to be charged. Speakers that charge their batteries via a USB port are more convenient than models that require an AC adapter, but larger batteries might not offer that option. Some speakers also let you plug in a USB cable to tap their battery to charge your smartphone.

Some Bluetooth speakers have built-in microphones that enable you to use the speaker as a speakerphone in concert with your smartphone. The sound quality will be much better than what you’ll get from your phone, and you’ll be able to turn the volume up much higher. This can be very handy for conference calls.

Higher-priced Bluetooth speakers also provide the option of connecting to your Wi-Fi network, so that you can stream music from a NAS box. Wi-Fi streams will offer higher fidelity than Bluetooth, even if the speaker supports the aptX codec. A speaker that provides for a hardwired network connection is all the more versatile. A Bluetooth speaker’s range depends on the power class of its radio, and it can vary widely and is impacted by the environment that it’s operating in. A Class 1 radio offers range of approximately 100 meters, but the number of walls between the Bluetooth source and the speaker and the type of materials in those walls will have a significant impact on range. It’s much easier for radio waves to pass through drywall than masonry, for instance. Objects in the signal path, such as large metal appliances, will reduce that range even further.

Instead of through wires, audio is sent across a Bluetooth connection as compressed data. But different devices handling of data compression is varied and often the reason why some speakers offer better sound quality than others.

Going based on advertised battery life can be tricky because many manufacturers who use the terms advertise “idealized cases.” Wiggins explained that some speakers “will last up to 24 hours, but only if you turn it on and play no music.” However, our top picks fared better than the other speakers we tested. The UE Roll 2 actually exceeds its advertised battery life at 50% volume with 10 hours of playback, while the Fugoo Style XL clocks in with a nearly absurd 27 hours at 50% volume. Max volume will decrease these numbers, but we don’t recommend setting them that high in the first place.

Unlike a standard speaker, which will focus the sound based on the direction it’s facing, an omnidirectional speaker radiates the sound outward (like a ripple on a pond). Based on your lifestyle and living situation you should only get an omnidirectional speaker if you’re able to place it somewhere open — perhaps, a coffee table in the center of your living room.

Don’t expect stereo-quality sound from a single Bluetooth speaker. According to Wiggins, you’ll want two speakers placed separately from each other to pick up on stereo sound, “otherwise your ears will pick up a single sound source.”

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