Wireless speakers that go anywhere in style
Our selection of the best wireless speakers on the market for design-conscious audiophiles
The world of wireless speakers is made up of multiple functions, visual diversity, different sound tastes and often conflicting ecosystems. Whether you’re looking for something low-key and dual-purpose – a digital assistant – or a stand-alone object that will fill the biggest space, here are some beautifully crafted portable audio kit examples.
The left field choice: Teenage Engineering OB-4
The offbeat option for the music lover, cult Swedish electronics specialist Teenage Engineering made sure their OB-4 speaker was different from the start. A large square body that conveys the hi-fi design of the 1970s, the OB-4 is designed for performance as well as gaming. A new update brings original features like an automatic rhythm-matching loop creator, as well as the ability to generate its own metronome click track (complete with the 808 kick drum) and an ambient drone creation function. Or you can just relax and listen to some music.
The audiophile option: Bose SoundLink Revolve II
Bose is known for cramming big sounds into small devices, and the company’s new SoundLink Revolve II is a Bluetooth speaker designed for a true 360-degree experience. The smaller version of the Revolve II family comes with an optional charging cradle so it can be hung in a bag and taken anywhere (with 13 hours of play time). The circular design projects sound throughout the room or ensures that it bounces accurately off any hard surface. You can upgrade to Revolve II + and also sync with another device or your home Bose system.
The simple and splash proof: Ultimate Ears Hyperboom
The latest speaker from portable specialist Ultimate Ears, the Hyperboom is a hefty beast that’s destined to be the life and soul of the party. Powerful, splash-proof and with a 24-hour battery life, this device has enough connectors to plug in audio systems and other phones, with the added bonus of a charging station. The EU app will connect all the necessary streaming services and help you compile your playlists.
Designer’s device: Sonos Roam
We admire the Roam for its efficient distillation of Sonos sound and aesthetics in a pint-sized case (literally). The waterproof triangular shape is designed to give you options when you’re on the go (no need to ride), with ten hours of playtime, sound that adapts to the background ambience and the ability to connect seamlessly between home wi-fi and smartphone depending on where you are.
The classic revisited: Marshall Emberton
Retro wireless speakers saved the Marshall brand from audio obscurity, as its stock of rugged guitar and bass amplifiers was sidelined by an increasingly space-obsessed world. The company claims its powerful sound has survived the miniaturization process, and the Emberton certainly looks the part, with the classic logo and grille, impressive 20 hours of playtime, a compact form factor, and simple controls. .
Waterproof: JBL GO2
A simple speaker and a bit bigger than a smartphone charger, JBL’s GO2 comes in a variety of colors, with a waterproof housing, five hours of playback, and an auxiliary input if Bluetooth isn’t available. .
The bestseller: Bang & Olufsen Beolit 20
Bang & Olufsen upgraded the Beolit 20 with improved battery life and built-in wireless charging. Already one of the company’s best-selling devices, the fourth-generation Beolit 20 turns it into a home hub, largely thanks to the wireless charging tray on top of the device that allows you put your phone down for a welcome boost in power. The device itself also received a battery boost, delivering up to eight hours on a single charge. Available in two distinctive colors, with anodized aluminum surfaces and a leather carrying strap, two devices can be paired for a true stereo. The gateway to the Bang & Olufsen experience.
Neighbor disruptor: Sony SRS-XP700
Another contender for the portable heavyweight crown, the SRS-XP700 is Sony’s flagship sound generator for the holidays. With 25 hours of battery life and a fast charge mode that will let you listen to tunes for three more hours after just ten minutes on mains, this X Series speaker won’t win the neighbors’ favor. There is a microphone input for impromptu karaoke or sound reinforcement tasks, as well as a bluetooth and wired connection to the audio input of your choice.