Best Portable Mini Bluetooth Speaker for 2022: JBL, Bose, Sony and More

Other than an excellent pair of headphones, the easiest way to listen to your music every time and wherever is with a transportable Bluetooth speaker. They can help you wirelessly stream your tunes out of your telephone, pill or laptop, and the very best Bluetooth audio system are additionally geared up with a built-in microphone, to allow them to double as a speakerphone for calls and conferences.Bluetooth audio system have come a good distance over time, and now provide improved sound, longer batter life, prolonged Bluetooth vary and extra dependable connectivity and elevated sturdiness. Many are additionally totally waterproof and a few are even designed to drift.

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Bose’s SoundLink Flex packs some severe punch

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As for smaller moveable Bluetooth audio system — I name them mini or micro audio system, relying on simply how compact they’re — you’ll encounter some limitations to their sound, notably with regards to bass output and general quantity. But for his or her small measurement, many fashions handle to exceed expectations with regards to sound high quality. While this record is concentrated completely on very compact audio system, we even have a listing of Best Bluetooth Speakers general, in addition to a listing of Best Wireless Bluetooth Boom Box Speakers, which options bigger moveable audio system. We’ll replace this record as new ultraportable Bluetooth audio system hit the market.

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When it launched, Bose made some daring claims about its new SoundLink Flex Bluetooth speaker, notably its bass efficiency. But it principally lives as much as the hype and is arguably the best-sounding wi-fi speaker for its comparatively compact measurement. Available in three colours — black, white smoke and stone blue (pictured) — the speaker is IP67 dust- and waterproof, and rated for 12 hours of battery life at average quantity ranges.It’s additionally geared up with Bose’s PositionIQ expertise to robotically detect the speaker’s orientation and ship optimized sound primarily based on whether or not it is upright, hanging or flat on its again. The Flex additionally floats and Bose says it could possibly survive drops and bumps, with a mushy silicone again and powder-coated metal grille that “will not peel or flake and is immune to corrosion and UV gentle.”While Bose’s SoundLink Micro additionally delivers spectacular sound for its tiny measurement, this speaker is greater, weighing simply over a pound (0.45 kg) and measuring 7.9 inches broad, 2.1 inches deep and three.6 inches excessive (20 by 5.Three by 9.1cm), so the Flex sounds considerably higher than the Micro. For some cause, it makes use of the older Bluetooth 4.2 as a substitute of 5.0, however I did not have any issues with connectivity.Bose says it could possibly fill a front room with sound. From my assessments, I’d say it must be a comparatively small front room — it could possibly solely output a lot sound as a single speaker. However, for those who pair two of them collectively in stereo mode, the sound will get to a complete different degree and certainly fills a bigger room with sound.

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Back in 2020, Tribit launched the StormBox Micro, a finances model of Bose’s wonderful SoundLink Micro speaker that delivered surprisingly good sound for its measurement and modest worth. Now we get the StormBox Micro 2, which provides improved sound and battery life, together with a charge-out characteristic that turns the speaker into an influence financial institution for cellular units similar to smartphones and tablets. An built-in strap permits you to clip it to your backpack or your bike’s handlebars.Like the unique, it is a superb worth and straightforward to advocate for those who’re on the lookout for a brilliant compact moveable wi-fi speaker. 

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With every new model of the Flip, JBL makes small enhancements, and whereas the most recent mannequin, the Flip 6, does not look a lot totally different from the Flip 5 on the skin, it does characteristic improved sound. It has two-way drivers with a woofer and tweeter and twin passive radiators that assist the Flip 6 ship a lot deeper bass than you assume it may. It’s totally waterproof and dust-proof with an IPX67 score. Like the Flip 5, it is rated for up 12 hours of audio playback at average quantity ranges and costs by way of USB-C. Available in a number of colour choices, it is one of many best-sounding audio system for its compact measurement.

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The JBL Bluetooth speaker that obtained the most important enhancements over the earlier mannequin is among the many firm’s smallest. The JBL Go Three has a totally new look — it is now coated in sturdy cloth as a substitute of getting the bare plastic design of its Go predecessors — and that new design, coupled with surprisingly respectable sound for its small measurement, makes the Go 3 ($50) one of many prime micro Bluetooth audio system on the market.Available in a number of colour choices, it has an IP67 water-resistance score, that means it may be dunked in water and is dust-proof. Battery life is rated at as much as 5 hours.

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Available in white or black for $179, the Roam is at the moment Sonos’ smallest and most inexpensive speaker (for those who do not depend these $99 Sonos-compatible Symfonisk Ikea Wi-Fi bookshelf audio system), although it is pretty costly for a mini wi-fi speaker. This mannequin, like Sonos’ earlier Move moveable speaker ($400), is provided with each Bluetooth and Wi-Fi and may faucet into an current Sonos multiroom audio system and hyperlink with different Series 2-compatible Sonos audio system. The Sonos Roam makes for an excellent starter Sonos speaker for these new to the Sonos world. Read our Sonos Roam evaluation.

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While Anker’s Soundcore Motion Plus got here out in 2019 it stays considered one of best-sounding audio system for round $100. It’s bigger than many mini Bluetooth audio system, however it’s nonetheless compact. It manages to sound fairly a bit fuller than a lot of the competitors in its worth vary, with greater bass, extra quantity and higher readability. It’s additionally totally waterproof (IPX7-rated) and has help for the aptX streaming codec for units like Samsung’s Galaxy telephones that help it.

Read our Anker Soundcore Motion Plus evaluation.

 

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Over the previous few years, Tribit has made a number of Bluetooth audio system that ship a whole lot of growth for the buck. Add its new XSound Mega to the record.Tribit is billing the XSound Mega as extra of an out of doors speaker — a lanyard is included for toting it round as a kind of mini boombox — however it works simply wonderful indoors. It has an LED gentle present you could activate or off and there are three EQ settings for sound: XBass, Music and Audiobook. Additionally, it may be used as an influence financial institution to cost your cellular units.In my assessments, the speaker in contrast fairly favorably to costlier audio system just like the JBL Charge 5. There’s loads of bass and the speaker performs loud for its measurement, with respectable readability. That mentioned, it is a mono speaker with a single driver and two bass radiators — that is the way you get all that bass. So whilst you can anticipate huge sound, the soundstage does not really feel all that broad, notably at decrease volumes. It really sounds higher at greater volumes.

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For its first three generations, JBL’s Clip micro Bluetooth speaker had a round design. But for the fourth-gen Clip 4, JBL has moved to a extra oval form, bulked up the speaker barely and added USB-C charging. This moveable Bluetooth speaker does appear extra sturdy, with a sturdier built-in carabiner clip. Also, it sounds a bit of higher, with extra quantity, clearer sound and extra bass. With an IP67 water resistance score, it could possibly survive being dunked in shallow water and is dust-proof. The Clip Four is true up there with the very best general micro Bluetooth audio system.

Read our evaluation of JBL Clip 4.

 

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With its new canister-like design, completely sized to slot in a chair cup holder, Sony has created a transportable Bluetooth speaker that has a design you are most likely acquainted with from in style audio system just like the UE Boom and JBL Flip, which have been upgraded over time with improved bass and battery life. An Extra Bass mannequin, the SRS-XB23 positively has a hotter sound. It delivers higher sound with extra bass and quantity than lots of the cheaper generic Bluetooth audio system yow will discover on Amazon within the $40-$100 vary on Amazon. It’s additionally a sleeker wanting Bluetooth speaker that is out there in 5 totally different colour choices: black, taupe, coral pink, gentle blue and olive inexperienced. Some colours can be found for much less.Equipped with two new full-range drivers and passive bass radiator, it delivers 12 hours of battery life at average quantity ranges and is water-, dust-, rust- and shock-proof with an IP67 score. It has USB-C charging and may join with as much as 100 different Sony audio system utilizing Sony’s Party Connect characteristic.

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Scosche BoomBottle audio system are comparable in measurement to the JBL Flip fashions and designed to slot in the bottle holder cage in your bike. But the BoomBottle MM additionally options Scosche’s magnetic Magic Mount on prime of the speaker in addition to a magnetic base that permits you to adhere the speaker to metallic flat surfaces. (It additionally comes with a small steel plate you could keep on with a nonmagnetic floor.) And lastly, there is a built-in bottle opener, which some individuals will recognize.It’s a fairly respectable sounding speaker, too — and rugged, with an IP67 score which means it is dustproof and waterproof. It’s not fairly there soundwise with the JBL Flip 6, however it performs fairly loud and has ample bass. Battery life is rated at 12 hours at average quantity ranges. You may wirelessly hyperlink two of those collectively to create a stereo pair or simply increase the sound. 

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The Tribit MaxSound Plus is about 30% greater than its sibling XSound Go and prices about $25 extra, however it performs considerably higher and is among the greatest sounding audio system in its measurement and worth class. It has a long-lasting rechargeable battery and superior audio high quality for a Bluetooth speaker.

Read our Tribit MaxSound Plus evaluation.

 

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JBL has launched the marginally improved Flip 6, however the Flip 5 stays in the marketplace and remains to be a superb compact speaker. And now that the Flip 6 has arrived, we’re seeing some reductions on this mannequin.It has an IPX7 waterproof certification, which suggests this small speaker might be submerged in a meter of water for as much as 30 minutes and survive. Tribit’s StormBox prices much less and performs louder, however I just like the tonal stability of the Flip 5 higher. The step-up JBL Charge 5 performs louder and delivers extra bass for $180. 

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We favored Ultimate Ears’ unique Wonderboom Bluetooth speaker, which sounded good for its compact measurement and was additionally waterproof. Now the corporate has launched the Wonderboom 2, which is a contact greater than the unique and sounds barely higher, with extra bass and a particular Outdoor Boost mode that reinforces treble.Like its predecessor, the totally waterproof Wonderboom 2 is a compact speaker that carries a listing worth of $100 however typically sells for rather less. What’s totally different is the IP67 score which means it is dust-proof, extra shock-resistant and likewise capable of float. It additionally has 30% higher battery life — as much as 13 hours at average quantity ranges, in keeping with Ultimate Ears — and you may hyperlink two collectively to create a stereo sound pairing by merely urgent a button on every speaker.

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Bang & Olufsen has upgraded its dome-shaped aluminum-clad A1 speaker with improved battery life, higher speakerphone efficiency (it now has a three-microphone array) and barely improved sound. It’s not solely the smallest wi-fi speaker from the Danish firm, but in addition probably the most inexpensive at $202.While the speaker drivers stay the identical, the Qualcomm chipset that powers the speaker has been upgraded (the speaker makes use of Bluetooth 5.1), bumping the sound high quality up a tad, notably at greater volumes, with higher digital sign processing. It stays one of many best-sounding mini Bluetooth speaker fashions, with richer extra tonally balanced sound than different Bluetooth audio system its measurement — and it ought to sound good, contemplating its elevated worth level.It’s additionally price noting that the A1 has multipoint Bluetooth pairing so you’ll be able to join this to your PC and smartphone on the similar time and simply swap forwards and backwards between the 2 if a name is available in in your telephone. Additionally, the speaker is Alexa-enabled, that means you’ll be able to activate Amazon’s voice assistant by simply saying “Alexa.” Battery life is rated at as much as 18 hours at 50% quantity (the sooner A1 did not reside as much as its battery life claims, however this quantity is extra correct) and for those who can afford it, you’ll be able to hyperlink two A1 audio system to create a stereo pair. The speaker is waterproof with an IP67 score that enables it to be submerged briefly in shallow water.

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I’ve lengthy been a fan of Sony’s smallest Bluetooth speaker, which has been modestly upgraded for 2021 with some design refinements and barely improved sound. This mannequin is each dust- and waterproof with an IP67 certification and is rated for 16 hours of battery life at average quantity ranges (it has USB-C charging, whereas the older XB12 did not). The speaker performs greater than you’d assume for its small measurement, with some punch to its bass, however it could possibly solely output a lot sound — sure, it has its limitations. If you add a second XB13, you will get stereo sound. The XB13 is accessible in a number of colour choices and features a strap so you’ll be able to connect it to varied objects. It additionally has speakerphone capabilities with an built-in microphone. It normally lists for $60, however needs to be sporadically discounted.

Read our Sony SRS-XB01 evaluation.

 

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At round $30, the Tribit XSound Go is among the prime audio system with Bluetooth connectivity for the cash. Besides sounding respectable, it is also totally waterproof. It additionally has wonderful battery life — as much as 24 hours at 50% quantity ranges.

Read our Tribit XSound Go evaluation.

 

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Although a bit of dear and as a result of be upgraded, the Bose SoundLink Micro sounds remarkably respectable for its tiny measurement, delivering extra bass than different pocketable audio system. It’s a totally waterproof Bluetooth speaker and out there in three colour choices, though the blue model seems to be exhausting to search out. While this mannequin is actually pocket-size — and that is definitely an interesting characteristic — the larger however nonetheless compact SoundLink Flex sounds considerably higher and can be the higher worth although it prices extra.

Read our Bose SoundLink Micro evaluation.

 

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Tribit’s StormBox speaker seems like a cross between a UE and a JBL speaker. We suspect that is not an accident. Fully waterproof, it prices about $50 lower than the JBL Flip 5 and produces greater sound and has as much as 20 hours of battery life. Tribit’s XSound audio system are most likely a greater worth, however the Stormbox is extra fashionable. It additionally has a chargeable li-ion battery capable of energy as much as 20 hours of steady playtime.

Full disclosure: This is the one product on this record we did not check in particular person. But we discovered a lot to admire in its predecessor, the Oontz Angle Plus, again in 2017. This one has marginally higher battery life, barely greater sound and is extra waterproof than the Plus, and it provides stereo pairing, too. We’ll have a hands-on analysis quickly, however we’re together with it right here primarily based on our constructive expertise with the Plus and the enthusiastic 4,800-plus person opinions on Amazon, the place it sells for $35 to $40. 

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