Best Bluetooth Speakers of 2016

by Adam MolinaMay 24, 2016

It’s been a busy year for audio and even though a couple of months isn’t enough time for some obviously amazing products to be dethroned, it is enough time for some new ones to emerge. We’re only about halfway through the year but we thought it’d be a good idea to update our best Bluetooth speakers list to reflect what’s going on in the market in mid-2016. Consider this a — progress report of sorts. Except instead of having to worry about what you got in math class, you get a few cool new options for Bluetooth speakers.

You might also like: Best bluetooth speakers under $50 | under $100


Best All-Around

Money is no object: Creative Sandblaster Roar 2 – Amazon.com ($160.99)

creative-sound-blaster-roar-2-sg-6

Now if you’re looking for the Swiss Army knife of speakers that has some great features and still sounds good, then our pick hasn’t changed since last year. The Creative Sound Blaster Roar 2 is still a killer speaker. The original Sound Blaster Roar took us by surprise, with a ton of great features at a competitive price. So when the Roar 2 came out we weren’t sure if Creative was going to pull off the same kind of magic.

In terms of bass, this speaker packs a punch

Luckily they did, and the Roar 2 has earned a spot on this list. It’s smaller and lighter than the original while maintaining a good sound, but the magic lies in the functionality. It has NFC, a USB output to charge your devices, a built-in voice recorder, a micro SD card slot so you can play music stored on a memory card, and it can even act as an external sound card for your computer. It has a 6,000 mAh battery that provides up to 8 hours of constant playback, and has on-board controls so you won’t have to reach for your source device every time you want to lower the volume.

In terms of sound the speaker packs a punch with a feature Creative calls “TeraBass”. Normally, when a speaker is played at low volumes it stresses the lower end of the frequency range so that bass can still be heard. Creative claims that the TeraBass feature is able to intelligently up the bass without “artificially over-accentuating” the levels, allowing for a more pleasant listening experience. On top of that there’s also the ROAR feature, which is the feature for which the speaker was named after.

Turning this on gives the speaker a boost in volume without distorting any of the frequencies. Even the vocals in the mid-range still come through loud and clear. It has a ton of features, but Creative still managed to keep it significantly under $200 which is pretty impressive. On Amazon, you can find it sitting with a comfortable 4.6 out of 5 star rating thanks to over 1,500 customer  reviews.

Buy from Amazon

Bang for your buck: Anker Soundcore – Amazon.com ($35.99)

AnkerSoundcore[2]

We reviewed a few options that could’ve gone here. Questionable sound quality is no longer a requirement when it comes to affordable Bluetooth speakers and we reviewed plenty of inexpensive speakers over the past few months, but one that stands out above the rest is the Anker Soundcore.

Another great feature is the 24-hour battery life

Anker seemingly came out of nowhere making a name for themselves in quality battery packs and phone accessories, and when they stepped into audio they continued to impress. The Soundcore is their newest Bluetooth speaker and when we reviewed it we were pretty impressed with the sound that came out of this innocuous little black box. It’s not going to blow you away with crystal clear audio, but when you take into account the sub-$50 price tag it makes you wonder how they were able to achieve what they did.

This little black box weighs in at only 12.6 ounces and has a soft rubberized body, so tossing it into a backpack isn’t a problem at all. Another great feature is the 24 hour battery life, which is perfect if you’re like me and don’t really want yet another device that needs to be plugged in every night. Up top is where you’ll find the power and Bluetooth pairing button along with the pause/play button and volume buttons.

It’s worth mentioning that the matte black plastic casing isn’t ideal for greasy fingers, so you may not want to reach for it after eating some chips. Anker claims range of 60 feet for the Soundcore and while playback isn’t perfect at that distance, they weren’t lying. Connecting up to 30 feet is a breeze and it’s only once you get to about 40 feet where you might run into some issues.

If you usually play music from something like an older iPod that doesn’t have Bluetooth capabilities, you can still plug in via the 3.5mm input located on the side. The Anker Soundcore comes in black, blue, and red for and has a score of 4.6 out of 5 stars on Amazon.

Buy from Amazon


Best At Home

Money is no object: Fluance Fi70 – Amazon.com ($499.99)

Fluance Fi70[1]

One of the more recent speakers we reviewed that really impressed us was the Fluance Fi70 Bluetooth speaker. First things first let’s get one thing out of the way: this isn’t portable. Though you can move around the house if you really want to, at 81 pounds it’s pretty much meant to stay in one place. That said it is still a Bluetooth speaker and sheerly due to its sheer size is able to provide a great audio experience whether you’re listening to music or watching a movie.

It's able to provide great audio due to sheer size.

The speaker stands just below waist height but is surprisingly easy to assemble considering it’s size. The speaker has some plastic but for the most part the entire housing is made of wood which not only helps with how it sounds, but also with the aesthetics. For such a large speaker it has a gorgeous design and would be a welcome addition to most home audio setups (especially if you don’t already have a home audio setup). It has a fairly strong Bluetooth connection and a few different inputs depending on what you want to do. Being a Bluetooth speaker there’s an option for connecting wirelesssly, but you can also listen to FM/AM radio, hardwire a source device through the 3.5mm audio jack, and also hook it up for video thanks to an optical input. If you need to charge your device there’s also a USB output.

The Fi70 has a lot of different inputs but thankfully they’re all hidden away on the back of the speaker. From the front you’ll only see a clean, minimal design that doesn’t even have any buttons to break up the continuity of the design. Instead, Fluance opted for the touch sensitive controls we’ve seen on some of their previous speakers. It worked well on those speakers and they work here as well, with controls letting you power on the speaker, control volume, change inputs, or change tracks. If you don’t feel like getting up to manually adjust the volume or settings, it also comes with a small remote so you can control your audio without ever leaving the couch.

All the features are great, but what really sets this speaker apart is the sound. It has dual 8” subwoofers that provide a full low end while the mids have their own set of dual drivers, as do the highs with dedicated tweeters. As we said in the full review, if you have space for a speaker of this size it’s well worth the money. And at only $500, it really isn’t too expensive to begin with, considering it’s a home speaker. The Fluance Fi70 may only have 13 reviews on Amazon, but it has an almost perfect score of 4.9 out of 5.

Buy from Amazon

Bang for your buck: Anker Premium Stereo Bluetooth Speaker – Amazon.com ($59.99)

Anker Premium[6]

Are you surprised it’s another Anker speaker? The Premium Bluetooth Speaker (henceforth referred to simply as the Premium) is a compact speaker with dreams of home audio. It received plenty of great reviews before we gave it a shot, and when we did we liked what we heard. It isn’t going to give you the sound that something like the Fluance Fi70 is going to, but that’s just due to its size. If this was as big as the Fi70 it’d sound just as good.

Apart from that, nothing about this speaker is old.

That said, this speaker measures only 8.3 x 2.4 x 2.4 inches and weighs 1.4 pounds. It’s still portable, but everything from the design to the way that it stands points towards it being made for something like a desk or table. It’s still rectangular in shape, but it has rounded edges that make it seems like it’d be better off in your living room instead of a backpack. The front grill is also made of the soft fabric found on retro audio speakers and give it an unmistakeable old school feel. Even the buttons up top are made of a plastic that reminds me of old electronics.

Apart from all that, nothing about this speaker is old. It has Bluetooth 4.0, buttons that let you control volume and playback built into the design, and an 8 hour battery life. It’s not as impressive as some other speakers of this size that we’ve seen, but in my mind that furthers the case that it makes a great home speaker. If you’re already home you’re probably not going to need the 24 battery life of the previously mentioned Soundcore because chances are you’re going to be near outlets.

If you decide to sacrifice some of that battery life, you get a more powerful bass, louder overall volume, and crispier highs which make for great listening experiences. Pair that with a sleek retro design and it’s why we chose the Premium as the best bang for your buck home Bluetooth speaker. If you need further confirmation before paying $59 for it, you can check Amazon where almost 1,000 customers have reviewed it and gave it a score of 4.5 out of 5 stars.

Buy from Amazon


Best Portable

Money is no object: JBL Flip 3 – Amazon.com ($81.99)

JBL Flip 3[4]

When it comes to portability the name JBL always comes up in one form or another. This time, it’s in the cylindrical shape of the JBL Flip 3. The Flip 3 is the sequel (threequel?) to the popular Flip. It now has a fabric covering with two passive bass radiators on either end to pump out the sound and a fabric covering to protect it from splashes.

Now that the Flip 3 is splashproof, it's a good beach companion

Battery life has  also been increased to 10 hours, nearly double the just over 5 hours we got while testing the Flip 2. Bass is better than it has any right to be in a speaker this size, mids are slightly forward but don’t go nuts, and while the highs can get harsh when you push the volume all the way up, they’re fine through most of the volume range.

During our testing we got almost 50 feet of range, and now that the Flip 3 is splashproof, it makes a good companion to take to the beach or a family picnic. It has the volume buttons sneakily embedded into the fabric and also two buttons on that back to activate Bluetooth pairing or to sync up with another JBL product.

If you have two of these (or something like the JBL Xtreme), pressing this button connects them together for a seamless audio experience. It’s a neat trick that doesn’t even require an app . With 4.6 out of 5 stars on Amazon coming from over 800 reviews, we doubt you’ll be disappointed.

Buy from Amazon

Bang for your buck: CB3 Ultra Slim – Amazon.com ($49.99)

CB3 Ultra Slim Bluetooth Speaker

Unless you’ve already seen it our post on the best Bluetooth speakers for under $50, you’ve probably never heard of this one, but the CB3 Ultra Slim can be found for less than $50 and measures only 1.8 inches thin. It is what it claims to be: ultra slim. But it still has some other features that makes it best bang for your buck portable option.

It's also fun to look at, thanks to its exposed passive radiator

For one, the unibody aluminum design doesn’t only mean that it’s slim enough to easily slide into your pocket or backpack, but it also means that it’s fairly durable. We wouldn’t exactly consider it rugged, but it can definitely survive trips from point A to point B without a problem.

Of course one thing any speaker this size is not going to do is shake the table with bass, but it is pretty decent considering it’s size. It’s also just fun to look at while it’s playing music since you can watch the passive radiator in the middle move along with the beat. Definitely something that will make you look that much cooler when you slide it out of your pocket and start playing music at your next get together. Battery life is spec’d at about 8 hours so although you might need to charge it after a days use, at least you can feel confident that it’ll get you through the day.

They come in three minimal colors that match your phone or computer pretty much spot on, so if you want something slim, ultra portable, and  definitely go grab one of these. They have a 4.4 out of 5 star rating on Amazon with 89% of the reviews being either 4 or 5 stars.

Buy from Amazon


Best Rugged/Waterproof

Money is no object: Fugoo Sport XL – Amazon.com ($249.99)

fugoo-sport-xl-sg-3

Summer parties and music go hand-in-hand, so what’s our favorite waterproof speaker? This title goes to the Fugoo Sport XL.

If you’re nowhere near water, then maybe some of the other speakers on this list are good enough for you. But if you like to enjoy warm weather with some tunes, then you might want something that can take a beating and a bath and live to see another day. Fugoo speakers are always a solid option when it comes to waterproofing, but the Sport XL takes the cake because of the easy controls, durable design, and the large sound.

If you're going to a pool party, you won't want to forget this speaker

It has an IP67 waterproof rating and can withstand 3 feet of water for 30 minutes. It can basically go swimming with the fishes, as long as the fish aren’t at a depth greater than 3 feet. Of course another compelling reason to go with this speaker is the baller 35 hour battery life. On either side are four symmetrically placed drivers that allow it to pump out the sound that it does. You’ll get four tweeters taking care of the highs, 2 mid/sub drivers, and 2 passive radiators.

If you’re going to any kind of water related party, the Sport XL is something you won’t want to leave behind. Not only is it waterproof but Fugoo claims that it’s drop proof up to 3 feet as well. Honorable mentions in this category go to the JBL Extreme and UE Megaboom, but we like the sound on the Fugoo way better. The Fugoo Sport XL can usually be found for around $250 and has an overall score of 4.2 out of 5 stars on Amazon.

Buy from Amazon

Bang for your buck: CB3 Armor XL – Amazon.com ($79.99)

CB3 Armor XL[1]

Normally this spot would be filled by something from JBL, but for the first time in a long time we found something that we like a little bit better. Enter the CB3 Armor XL. This is a waterproof speaker that’s as rugged as it look. It probably shouldn’t be completely submerged in water, but when we ran it under a faucet it came out completely fine, so at least you know that you won’t need to worry if you’re near water.

The Armor XL was built to be abused.

It doesn’t have as sleek a design as some of the other speakers on this list, but this is this rugged section isn’t it? Who cares, as long as it’s durable and sounds good. This little cube also has Bluetooth 4.0, and it can play music for a straight 10 hours. As you would expect from a speaker that’s meant to be durable, it does have a few basic playback controls built in since you’re probably not going to want to bring your $600 phone near water. Better to deal with the $79 speaker while standing in a pool than a phone. It has a power button, dedicated phone button for answering and ending phone calls, a mute button, track skipping buttons, and volume buttons. The buttons are made of a soft plastic and embedded into the rubber of the speaker on top.

Bass and kick drums come through loud and clear thanks to the dual 50mm drivers so if you enjoy a strong low end, you’ll like this one. Overall sound quality is pretty good on the Armor XL, but it’s the sheer toughness of this speaker that gives it a spot on this list. The speaker also comes with a rubber strap that you can attach to the speaker so you can dangle it from a shower head or even a backpack. While a shower or a beach might not seem like a hostile environment for you, it is for electronics so a solid build is essential.

The combination of the sound and the build quality is the reason why this speaker is a perfect pick for a durable bang for buck option. The speaker is brand new so it doesn’t have too many reviews on Amazon, but its gathered a 4.9 out of 5 star rating from the few available reviews that are already there.

Buy from Amazon

You might also like: Best waterproof bluetooth speakers


Best Design

Money is no object: Bose SoundLink Mini 2 – Amazon.com ($179.99)

bose-soundlink-mini-2-sg-2

If you’re looking for something sleek and portable, then the Bose SoundLink Mini 2 is still a great option. Bose products always start a debate among people who care about audio, but we take it on a case by case basis and the SoundLink Mini 2 definitely impressed us. It now has a 10 hour battery life compared to the 7 hours from the original, and thankfully it can now be charged by micro USB because, you know it’s 2016.

The SoundLink Mini 2 packs big sound in a small size

The speaker has a new multifunction button up top next to the volume, power, and Bluetooth button and still maintains the minimal design people loved about the original. The same unibody metal design means that it’s fairly durable and though I still wouldn’t want to drop it, I’m sure it would come away from the average drop with little damage. We said it in the full review but it’s worth repeating here, it has a big sound in a small size.

One overlooked perk of the SoundLink Mini 2 is that it has a good quality speakerphone built in. This might not be a big deal for most people, but if you or someone you know tends to spend a lot of time speaking on the phone or on conference calls this could be a deal breaker.

The SoundLink Mini 2 is more of a refinement to the original, which is fine considering how much most people seemed to like it. Anytime a product is made better than it was, it’s hard to complain. That said, hopefully the next SoundLink Mini shakes things up and looks a little different, but for now the Mini 2 is a pretty little thing with great sound. It has a 4.7 out of 5 star rating on Amazon and comes in two colors: black or silver.

Buy from Amazon

Bang for your buck: GOgroove BassPULSE Wireless – Amazon.com ($59.99)

BassPULSE Wireless[7]

It’s always hard to judge something in terms of design or style because, like sound, it’s subjective for the most part. So while most people may like the minimal design of speakers like the Bose SoundLink Mini 2 that was previously mentioned, it may not be for everyone.For those of you that prefer LED lights, jagged edges, and want  speakers with a “cool” factor, there’s the GOgroove BassPULSE wireless desktop speakers by GOgroove.

This is for those who prefer speakers with some cool factor

Though these are Bluetooth, they’re desktop speakers which by definition makes them almost the exact opposite of portable. You’ll get two satellite drivers with 40mm drivers clearly visible in each of them because, if you haven’t noticed by now, they’re mostly see through. The plastic is designed to look like it has cracked and jagged edges, which get illuminated by LED lights at the base of the speaker. They stand 8.25” tall and come with sub that also has the same illuminated design on its front.

The sub is about 11”in height and definitely delivers on bass. In fact, it might even be a little too much bass but thankfully you can adjust it to your liking thanks to the bass level knob found on the subwoofer. It connects to your computer via a 3.5mm jack, but it does have Bluetooth 2.1 +EDC (Enhanced Data Rate), so it can stream audio from something like a phone or tablet. You can connect via Bluetooth to the computer too, but in testing we found it easier to just leave that plugged in and use Bluetooth for portable devices.

The range is pretty standard at about 30 feet, but if there are no walls in the way the connection can stay strong at an even longer distance. Probably the coolest feature of the speaker is where it gets its name from. If you turn up the bass past 80%, the lights will pulsate to the beat of whatever music you are listening to. It seems gimmicky, and that’s because it is. But we actually found this to be quite entertaining and oddly peaceful working with it on the desk. It also has a fairly solid total score of 3.4 out of 5 stars on Amazon.

Buy from Amazon


While we haven’t covered every possible price range or use case here, these picks represent what we feel are some of the best options for a few different use cases. If you’re looking for something that we haven’t covered here, whether it’s more expensive, more rugged, or just plain different, make sure to check out all of our reviews over at SoundGuys.com since we’ve reviewed a lot of stuff, so you’ll probably find what you’re looking for there. As always we’ll be sure to keep this updated with new picks and information so you know you’ll always be up to date.

Full disclosure: CB3 Audio is a partner of Sound Guys.

  • RacerCG

    Was being battery powered one of the criteria to make your list? If not, I’m surprised the Fluance Fi30 isn’t included. It’s not portable like the battery powered options are, but sounds amazing given the price. It may not have the amount of bass the Soundlink III has, but its bass is much less distorted. I’m always amazed that so-called “sound guys” fall for the Bose hype and equate loud, boomy, distorted bass with good sound. /smh

    • I don’t equate loud boomy distorted bass with anything. If you’re looking for accurate bass, a Bluetooth speaker is not the place to find it. That said, a lot of people are looking for quantity not quality when it comes to bass, so that is reflected in our recommendations.

      • SmilinJack

        Well, I’m looking for a good balance — pretty good sound quality, freq range down into fairly accurate bass but doesn’t need to pound it out, and a fair price. I.e.: Value. Sony SRS-X3 might be my baby. Good reviews, and good best-of list — thanks Kris and SoundGang!

      • RacerCG

        “If you’re looking for accurate bass, a Bluetooth speaker is not the place to find it.”

        Agreed. But some Bluetooth speakers produce more accurate/balanced (i.e., less distorted) bass than others, which should also be reflected in your recommendations. 🙂

      • Greg Landesman

        Then you have not hreard the Riva TurboX. So you would be incorrect sir!!

  • King_Lewis

    I got the sound blaster roar and it is unbelievable that the speaker cost half of the soundlink. Personally, me and my friends couldn’t tell the difference between the speaker but the roar really packed more value with the built-in microsd player, battery bank and even customizable eq on the pc. But it does feel weird to own a creative in a sea of bose speakers amongst my friends lol

    • Sound Experience

      For years people are bose this and that, and for years I had a 7.1 creative sound system that actually throw the whole building out of the window, had to be careful because of neighbors, as walls (and they are concrete walls) and windows vibrated. And for the fraction of the price of a bose system.

      And actually they where my computer and media speakers 2 for 1.

      So people creative offer a lot for a very good price.

    • Couldn’t agree more. I’ve always loved Creative products, and this bluetooth speaker is absolutely phenomenal for the money. It’s feature set and sound blow away the competition, especially when you consider the price!

    • R6ex

      Just bought the Roar 2. Good price. Great feature set. Love the uSD-card recording feature. Compared to other bluetooth speakers, it sounds phenomenal; but compared to my other 2.1 speaker set (Creative T3300 with a subwoofer 8 times the size of the Roar 2), the bass, while clearly audible, feels weak. 🙁 For portability, Roar 2 is the best, but for listening seated down, 2.1 systems’ the way to go.

      • R6ex

        Update:
        ======

        The bass seems to grow stronger after 3 x 5 hrs loud sessions. What seems like weak bass – compared to the subwoofer of the T3300 – sounded significantly stronger! While its still not as tight as a subwoofer, the boom felt satisfyingly stronger. I can now say I’ll be proud to bring this little speaker around with me everywhere I go, because its got powerful bass to satisfy everyone.

        Never knew there’s this thing called “Breaking In” for speakers (though as a motorbiker, I’m well aware of breaking in for a new bike). But seems like its all true. You need to bang this baby a little louder than normal for extended number of hours, so as to give a chance for the parts of the speakers a chance to flex and reach its full potential.

        Sorry for the premature 1st review here. After breaking-in, this is one heck of a small package with big, Big, BOOMY sound!!! Best Bluetooth Speaker ever!

        • Arun Muralidhar

          interesting.. while i do know that cars bikes hv a break in, even the latest tech performs a tad better after 10k kms, break in for electronics!

          to me its kinda out of world thought. like mechanical parts, wear n tear, lubrication n stuff is understandable but all that moves in a small bluetooth speaker would be its cone.

          so does that mean as the cone needs some breaking in. Or even entire electronics has a break in period. Should test it out when i get a new speaker set or phone 🙂

  • Kendall Hadden

    How does the Anker MP141 compare to the JBL Clip?

  • Ralph

    The Azatom Stealth Air bluetooth speaker is a worthy opponent to any of those mentioned above not to mention it’s Airplay compatible which makes it a truly versatile choice. Check it out here: http://topspeakers.co.uk/azatom-stealth-air-review.html

  • Aunty Clause

    What’s the best blue tooth waterproof speaker between $50-150? HELP? (for Shower)

    • Bur

      7 months late sorry, but the Hercules btp04 outdoor !!! Its ip64 so not directly underwater, but it can take watersplashes

    • Roger

      Nice article but list is not updated from long time. I found latest list of Top 5 Bluetooth Speakers Here: http://www.beautyz. org/best-bluetooth-speakers-in-2016/ . . . List has some quality speakers.

      • Haters hate

        You’re kidding I hope? That is a short review of super cheap, small speakers that would be a downgrade from any decent bluetooth speaker. I currently have the Philips Shoqbox that would stomp any of those and I’m looking to upgrade.

    • scottalias

      I bought an Oontz Angle 3 for $28. I really like it, it’s water resistant, it weighs 8 ounces and puts out 10 watts in stereo with crisp clear highs, full mid range and you can even hear the bass. I’m thoroughly pleased with it.

      Audiophiles just don’t listen to mp3s or use Bluetooth.

      • Truffy

        “Audiophiles just don’t listen to mp3s or use Bluetooth”
        True enough. My 11yo daughter wants a Beats Pill in pink (the colour’s more important than the quality spec!)

  • Mike Tudisca

    Sound quality wise, would you recommend the SL3, the Roar or the Denon Envaya?

    • Wesley Heater

      Definitely SoundLink III

    • niico100

      Envaya MINI destroys all of the ones you’ve listed – even the standard Envaya bizarrely. The Envaya Mini should have been tested here – and would easily have won.

      • Haters hate

        Envaya is pretty small. I would bet SL3 would perform better

    • Philip

      I got myself a Bose SL 3…and, bearing in mind that such speakers are primarily designed to be used outdoors, the sound – especially the bass, is amazing. If using indoors, just keep the speaker away from hard vertical surfaces…and you will get the best from it. I use mine mostly during the day when I am working (mostly Psybient / Psychill / spoken discourses – and in the evenings, for movies with my Pico Genie M400 projector ~ * Get yourself one of these 😉 )…and I have no complaints whatsoever about this speaker 🙂 * I do have ONE suggestion for Bose…and that is, make an ‘Indoor/outdoor’ switch…so as to switch up and down the bass…because in a small space…the bass is *almost* too much !

  • Abhishek Awasthi

    Why is the Logitech UE Boom not reviewed? Or the Nyne Bass?

    • Ted

      Because they didn’t pay him to say so. This guy gets free product and $$$ to do these. Completely untrustworthy and pointless videos with no depth. I’ve tried all the speakers he mentioned, and by far the best was the UE Boom, Nyne was mediocre, nothing great. Bose has great quality, but is not for active life. JBL is a knockoff of the Boom, made of crappier material and quality. Cheaper in some cases, but i’d 100% of the time pay a little more for quality. JBL frankly I always stay away from.

  • Kathleen

    It’s overwhelming with all the speakers out there. Thanks for sorting a few things out!

    • Don Joe

      They could’ve done some more sorting. In the “large speaker for garden parties” category there are very solid competitors to the SL3 like the Klipsch KMC-3 or the JBL Xtreme, not to mention the hi-fi bluetooth speaker that remains the king of sound quality / fidelity to this day, the Riva Turbo X (to be followed this fall by a little brother that could turn out to be even better fidelity-wise, the Riva S).

      The Flip 2 already has an improved version out, the Flip 3, which has far better sound but may also be more expensive. If that one falls in the sub-$150 category, the big question should be whether it can beat the extraordinary Denon Envaya Mini, which offers unmatched audio fidelity in a half-a-litre and half-a-kilogram box. No portable speaker I’ve heard until now that costs under $200 and occupies 1 litre of volume or less can do what the DEM can do. Maybe the Riva S will beat it in sound quality but that victory will come at a hefty price around $250.

      As for the Anker, forget that nonsense. Your best best in the “really small” / sub-$50 class are the JBL Micro 2 and the TDK A12 Trek Micro. You can even buy pairs of them to use as a true-stereo system and you will still be around $50 total expenditure.

  • Mikestroh

    I love my Creative Sound Roar….best bang for the buck due to it’s multiple features/functions.

    • R6ex

      Just bought the Roar 2. Good price. Great feature set. Compared to other bluetooth speakers, it sounds phenomenal; but compared to my other 2.1 speaker set (with a subwoofer 8 times the size of the Roar 2), the bass, while clearly audible, feels weak. 🙁 For portability, Roar 2 is the best, but for listening seated down, 2.1 systems’ the way to go.

      • R6ex

        Update:
        ======

        The bass seems to grow stronger after 3 x 5 hrs loud sessions. What seems like weak bass – compared to the subwoofer of the T3300 – sounded significantly stronger! While its still not as tight as a subwoofer, the boom felt satisfyingly stronger. I can now say I’ll be proud to bring this little speaker around with me everywhere I go, because its got powerful bass to satisfy everyone.

        Never knew there’s this thing called “Breaking In” for speakers (though as a motorbiker, I’m well aware of breaking in for a new bike). But seems like its all true. You need to bang this baby a little louder than normal for extended number of hours, so as to give a chance for the parts of the speakers a chance to flex and reach its full potential.

        Sorry for the premature 1st review here. After breaking-in, this is one heck of a small package with big, Big, BOOMY sound!!! Best Bluetooth Speaker ever!!!

        • dvdlgh

          Headphones also.

        • Haters hate

          Could you clarify how loud it gets? Probably not as loud as the PEACHTREE DEEPBLUE 2 or aiwa exos 9 but we need something louder than the philips shoqbox, which is much more rugged than most cheaper speakers, much louder than an iphone, but not enough to play music loud enough for a party.

  • Ahy Nonimous

    UE Megaboom and Fugoo Style are both better than all the ones listed here, IMHO. The UE is great, but at $299, it’s $100 more than the Fugoo Style. Both are fully waterproof. I prefer the look of the UE, but I’m not sure if it’s worth the extra $100.

  • Wan23

    Does Anker comes with a 2.1A usb charger?

  • S.Yu

    No SRS-X9, you gotta be kidding me. The Bose sounds terrible and muddy.

    • Wesley Heater

      I like both…

  • Johnny Stardust

    I got the Thodio iBox XC from my wife for my birthday last month, totally blown away by it, 200 watts, 51 hour battery, HD Bluetooth, o and did I mention it’s built out of 0.7” solid hard woods?!?

    • patrik

      You didn’t meantion it weighs 9kg..

    • Lucky Wang

      Very cool, though when I select a nice wood and add bluetooth I get close to $1k. For home, I ended up getting an AudioEngine A5+ in Bamboo for about half that.

      • TheTruthAsIKnowIt

        Let’s be honest, they do’t look any where near as cool andt hat’s why Thodio is so expensive. It’s for poseurs who want to show off the scratch.

        • Lucky Wang

          The Thodio looks great, no doubt about it. I think the A5+ look great in solid bamboo as well, but the Thodio is available in a variety of designer woods. Just a question of how much that is worth to you.

    • TheTruthAsIKnowIt

      This is a stoopid product for poseurs

    • Raimis Juodvalkis

      $900 for the speaker? Not for me, tx.

      • paxmos

        Look at it this way, if your house gets really cold, you could use it as a fire log to save your life…For that only, it is priceless!!..don’t you think?

  • Bobo

    Has anyone tried Koss BTS1. Can’t beat it.

  • Jack

    I would like to by a great sounding Bluetooth speaker with a AM/FM receiver, any recommendations. Alternatively, are there small receivers that I could plug into a 3.5 or USB port?

  • mizmite6

    Got my Headrush for 49.99 and happy with the sound.

  • Synthes

    I prefer Loewe Speaker 2Go, this one of the best bluetooth speaker, some people think it’s better than the Bose Soundlink III, 40 watts, 8 hours of battery life. Bose is just more popular than Loewe.

  • Lachy Bell

    where is the ue boom? and Logitech x50

  • kazper333

    So which is the best water proof, 20hrs+ battery, hiRes crystal clear audio and can fill a big room with it big sound and under $300?

  • Monte Mallin

    Hi- I recently got the Fugoo Style and it sounds ok. But Sound is THE most important thing for me and I can only spend up to $200.00 MAX. What is the best sounding bluetooth soundbar for that price, and specifically how does it compare to the Fugoo? Thank you!

  • Samuel Escobar

    What about the Marshall Stanmore?

    • Wesley Heater

      it’s okayish. overpriced, though

  • Will.I.am.not

    These all sound great, but they’re all so expensive. I got this one, it’s loud, has nice base, battery lasts like 8 hours, it’s waterproof. Save some dough. http://amzn.to/1VtioAC

  • Abigél Ráhel

    my opinion xiaomi square box+ LG G4+viper4 android with maxxaudio speaker IRS=Loud and bass king sound only. 19 $

  • Ahy Nonimous

    UE Megaboom!

    • Wesley Heater

      meh

  • Dorsen Perianen

    New kid on the block: Riva Audio Turbo X

  • Will.I.am.not

    I’m not one to spend a lot on something like this. I would normally just get a cheap item. But I heard these Beats and the sound was AMAZING. At $120, it’s a good deal. check them out: http://amzn.to/1Ql8so9

    • Wesley Heater

      Get your ears checked, Beats are shit!!!

  • Jonathan

    With all due respect, these are the best bluetooth speakers of 2014. It strains credulity to have an article titled “Best bluetooth speakers of 2015” that was written in May.

  • Wesley Heater

    Proud SLIII owner, but Im disappointed to never see the Sony bt speakers as well, theyre great! I dont see whats terrible about them tbh

  • Aryan Auti

    i just bought a flip 2 and well its making background music louder than the main music
    can i do anything to solve it

  • SLiT

    Logitech x100. Durable, compact, fits in the pocket. Great sound for its size and price. Haven’t tried Anker yet though. Bose is definitely good but of course, not cheap.

  • aniketk

    Creative Muvo 20! <3

  • BarleySinger

    I want 2 actual speakers I can position – for ACTUAL Stereo sound. One Mylar speaker (or 2 of them which are only 10cm to 15cm apart) just does not produce the same sound quality. Portability is nice and all, but we need options that give you two separate speakers (with woofers).

  • niico100

    You REALLY need the Denon Envaya Mini (not standard Envaya – that costs more and isn’t as good).

    The Envaya Mini destroys the competition here with little effort – it’s not even close.

    • Huey

      “any OTHER reviews.”
      FTFY.

  • Ben

    The Brookstone Big Blue Party is the best I’ve heard by a wide margin. It may have shorter battery life, but for pure sound performance is far and above any of the others I did a Pepsi Taste Test against (all on this list accept for the Wren) . Not sure why I never see it on any of these lists or even reviewed for that matter. I even use it in my car as it sounds better than the car’s radio. I went to a beach party where someone had his Bose speaker out. As soon as I turned on the Big Blue Party, he put the Bose away. I got it on sale online for $185 (including tax and shipping). This was one of the best investments I’ve ever made.

  • sithishs

    Bose made it on this list…making this list automatically crap.

  • Franklin Hill

    I need a good loud speaker for tailgating, outdoor functions. I have a bose soundlink ll, and that doesnt cut it at all. I was thinking of an amplifier, or large boombox. Names I’ve come around in my price rage are, QFX, ION, Berhringer, and Monoprice. Any help- would be appreciated.

  • Quan Li

    SoundJump by Maqe is a nice speaker with a removable powerbank! More eco-friendly with great sound, don’t end up with a paper weight when the battery dies.

    • paxmos

      I couldn’t find any info as to when it would ship, any idea?

      • Quan Li

        shipping now on amazon and the website

        • paxmos

          Thanks

  • Atul Patil

    Nice article but list is not updated from long time . . I found latest list of Top 5 Bluetooth Speakers in 2016 Here . . . This list has top quality Bluetooth speakers!!!

    • larrymcj

      Sorry, but the five speakers your list list are not even close to the “Top 5″…not by any stretch of the imagination. Nice effort in getting us all to go to an unknown website, though.

  • ‘Genryu’

    Any real audiophile knows that this article has zero credibility when it recommends any Bose product. They’re scammers at best.

    • tomclarke

      “Any real audiophile” probably isn’t going to spend money on a Bluetooth speaker. But the Bose SLIII is a very good example of a Bluetooth speaker (it’s not actually mentioned in this list, probably because it’s a little bigger). You’ve obviously heard it in action: what didn’t you like about it?

  • o3mta3o

    Fugoo is garbage. I bought one and brought it back in a few hours. most importantly, it’s so quiet at max volume which sucks because these little speakers always do best in their mid volume range. don’t do it.

  • anteullow

    I found Siri Speaker on amaozn http://www.amazon.com/Bluetooth-PlusinnoTM-Waterproof-Integrated-Microphone/dp/B0182B8ARI/ . If you have more than one P10 , or any powered speaker that has an auxiliary input, you can daisy chain the speakers together through the 3.5mm output. Adding more speakers helps create an even wider field of sound, producing an encompassing effect.

  • disqus_sDNCz0jdq4

    Edifier Spinnaker

  • Erik

    Great picks! I’d also add the Harman/Kardon Esquire 2 to the list. It’s portable, beautifully designed, and it sounds excellent for a speaker enclosure that is about an inch deep.

    I forget if it was released in 2016 or 2015, though.

  • davidhunternyc

    ,,, and what about the Riva S?

  • Dumbbells Matt

    The Fluance Fi50 blows all the above out of the water for both quality of sound and price….It isn’t even mentioned…..Unbelievable bias here.

  • Hurshey Bar

    All of these have just one speaker box… SHARKK 2 speaker bluetooth wireless is the best… STEREO….. NO WIRES…

  • JBL Xtreme ?