Good / Well designed and well built, with a very useful control app. Clear sound with no distortion even at max volume, and with 360 sound technology, it can really fill any space.
Bad / Even with EQ adjustments, it’s difficult to get complete and powerful bass/low end tones.
Verdict / UE Boom 2 has some of the best collection of features (control app, 360 sound, waterproof, etc) available on the Bluetooth market, which makes it stand out from the crowded field of wireless portable Bluetooth speakers.
Intro Ultimate Ears BOOM 2 Wireless Bluetooth Speaker Review
If you do a quick Google search for “best portable Bluetooth speakers” one of the names that consistently shows up is the UE Boom 2. This waterproof and portable Bluetooth speaker equipped with 360 sound technology is consistently one of the best rated speakers on the market. So are these reviewers right, or is it all hype? I tested out the UE Boom 2, and can say it’s certainly a contender for the top spot on any list. I’ll tell you why in this review.
- 360 Degree Sound
- 15-Hour Battery
- 100 ft. Bluetooth wireless range
- Ultimate Ears App for Hands Free Control
Solid and stylish design: Simply put, the UE Boom features a top notch build quality. The shape is a sleek and effective can-like cylinder, with large volume controls on its face. It feels solid like it can certainly hold up to long term use and last you for quite a while. It also comes in a wide variety of colors, from traditional black, to bright color combinations like their purple and orange “Tropical Edition”.
Clear and distortion free sound with a lot of presence: While it’s somewhat common for portable speakers to have issues with sound distortion at max volume, this is not the case with the UE Boom 2. No matter how loud you crank up the volume (and this speaker can get really loud too) the sound stays clear, with instruments and voices all shining through.
It also has a powerful sound presence, thanks to the 360 sound technology. Basically, what this does is project the sound through all directions to give it a three dimensional and immersive feel. It also enables this tiny speaker to fill up large spaces, which makes it great for outdoor use.
Clever and useful app for hands free control: One of my favorite features is the Ultimate Ears app. It’s an app that you can download to your smart phone that functions like a remote control and dashboard for the speaker. From there you can adjust volume, EQ settings (manually or using the preset EQ modes), monitor battery life, and the speaker turn on and off.
Where’s the bass? As clean and crisp the sound is, I was surprised by the underpowered bass sound. Even after playing around with various EQ settings, and tweaking all the available levels, I just couldn’t get the level of low end tone I wanted. Sure, you can clearly hear the drunk kicks and bass lines, but you can’t really feel them. It’s more noticeable in certain genres, like hip-hop, where bass is a big part of the sound, and less so in EDM which benefits from the more pronounced mid/high tones.
Once you narrow your selection for choices to the best quality speakers, the final choice will depend on your personal preferences. Sound is subjective, so what may sound great to one pair of ears, may sound bad to another. It also depends on how you are going to use the speaker.
So, for example, in the case of the UE Boom 2’s 360 degree sound technology, this is great if you plan on using it for parties and outdoors, but if you are mainly going to be using it in your bedroom, then you may not get the most benefit out of this technology. As I mentioned earlier in the review, this speaker has really clear audio, with a crisp and an even sound mix.
The bass is the only part of the sound I found lacking. But on the other hand, having an even sound profile enables this speaker to avoid issues with distortion at high volumes. So, it’ll come down to a matter of personal preference. The good news is, with so many features, and with high quality construction, there’s a lot to like about the Ultimate Ears BOOM 2 Wireless Bluetooth Speaker. The price has also dropped from its debut price of $200 to now $150, so it’s an all-around solid buy.