Ultimate Ears' first WONDERBOOM Bluetooth speaker was a big deal upon its release, enticing customers with its big sound, compact size, and water resistance. And now, with an upgraded model coming out, there's even more to like about this excellent product.
- Loud af
- 360-degree sound
- IP67 waterproof and floats
- Pairs with another Wonderboom for stereo sound
- Big bass in a tiny package
- Pairs with two devices at once
- No app connectivity
- Debuts at $100
- No voice assistant support
- Micro-USB charging
Portable Party Pleaser
What is the Ultimate Ears WONDERBOOM 2?
Ultimate Ears' popular WONDERBOOM portable Bluetooth speaker finally meets its successor this July, and while the first is still more than capable of rocking your socks off, the newest WONDERBOOM 2 features a few important improvements to make it worth the upgrade. Along with 30% more battery life, this latest iteration includes enhanced bass, an Outdoor Boost mode, and the ability to achieve true wireless stereo sound when paired with another WONDERBOOM 2.
The best features of the original WONDERBOOM are still intact, from its compact size to its booming sound that's sent out in every direction with the speaker's 360-degree design. With its new improvements, the WONDERBOOM 2 is dust-proof and lasts for up to 13 hours on a single charge. It's still waterproof and a perfect choice to bring to the beach, the pool, or even in your shower. Available in four colors, including Deep Space Black, Crushed Ice Grey, Bermuda Blue, and Radical Red, you can pick a style to match yours and, to be honest, I like them all.
The WONDERBOOM 2 utilizes Bluetooth to allow for a wireless range of over 30 feet and the ability to pair with two devices simultaneously. It's also drop-proof, and with its integrated controls, you can adjust the volume or switch the track you're listening to without needing to pull out your phone.
Ultimate Ears WONDERBOOM 2 What I like
Upon unboxing the WONDERBOOM 2, you immediately notice its heft and durability. The speaker grille feels expensive, and it should. Pairing with a device is as simple as turning on the speaker and pressing a button, and after the first time pairing, the speaker connects instantly each time it's turned on. This is the first speaker I've used that's capable of pairing with two devices at once, and it works seamlessly. Once both devices are paired, the speaker intelligently switches between them based on where audio is playing with no other assistance needed.
I was most excited about bringing this speaker into the shower, and it was warranted. It's capable of being submerged in just over three feet of water for 30 minutes, so if you just can't help but sing while getting cleaned up, this speaker is a must-have. There's a protective cover that keeps its Micro-USB port safe while using this speaker around water, and you'll want to make sure that area isn't wet when recharging.
The winning feature of the WONDERBOOM 2 is, as it should be, its sound quality. As a huge music fanatic, on any given day I'll listen to at least a few hours of music, and despite how many times I've listened to different songs using various headphones and speakers, I've started to notice a few previously unheard details in music I've known for years since using the WONDERBOOM 2.
Not only does it offer extremely clarity in its sound reproduction, but it packs quite a punch on the loudness scale, too. Now that I'm living in an apartment, I try to be careful about how loud I turn up the music, and with the WONDERBOOM 2, I've had to be extra cautious. I generally have it playing at less than 50% volume, as I'm sure I would wake the neighbor's baby if it went any louder. Meanwhile, its Outdoor Boost mode is perfect if you're heading outside and want to bring it along, helping to boost vocals and bass. Even its regular setting beats listening to music on my phone or even my MacBook Pro's integrated speaker.
Too much or not enough?
Ultimate Ears WONDERBOOM 2 What I don't like
There's not too much to dislike about the WONDERBOOM 2, but let's get nitpicky. This speaker was built with portability in mind, and its Outdoor Boost mode helps put that into perspective. However, if you're like me and using this speaker while not wanting to annoy your neighbors or your sleeping roommate, its loudness could be a bit overkill, especially considering its MSRP of $99.99.
Though you may expect more for this price, there's no integrated microphone, nor any smart voice assistants, and it doesn't offer app connectivity either. What this speaker does, it does it very well, but I do think with a few more smart features it could have been a must-have product for everyone. Instead, it's a fantastic choice for on-the-go listeners, those looking to rock out a friend's house party, and anyone who wants to add a bit more bass to their shower performances.
Ultimate Ears WONDERBOOM 2 Should you buy it?
4 out of 5
The WONDERBOOM 2 is not just a durable travel speaker but also a superb option for listening at home while paired to devices like your phone, tablet, or computer. Considering its retail price of $99.99, it's a bit disappointing to find that it lacks smart features like app connectivity and voice activation. However, if you're looking for a booming Bluetooth speaker that takes up minimal space, can last all day long, and is even usable in your shower, look no further.
A big upgrade
The best gets better
UE's WONDERBOOM 2 isn't packed with extraneous features like app connectivity or a built-in mic; instead, UE put all its efforts into focusing on making this compact Bluetooth speaker sound the best it can, even at high volumes.
Does it truly pair in stereo? If I remember correctly the "pairing" on the original was just doubling up the mono-sound.
Yes it does! You're correct regarding the first Wonderboom, but that's one of the improvements UE made for the newest version. They probably heard more than a few complaints about that one.
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