Bose SoundLink Micro Review
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|Pros||Good sound quality, completely waterproof, lightweight and portable||Good sound quality, waterproof, long battery life||Super-portable, waterproof, great battery life||Loud, compact, durable||Portable, great battery life, inexpensive|
|Cons||Short battery life||Not the strongest sounding bass||Sound quality diminishes significantly at higher volumes||Distortion at higher volume, not the longest battery life||Sub-par sound quality|
|Bottom Line||Great sound for a small speaker, but the short battery life feels limiting in something so portable||An affordable balance for those that want good sound quality and portability but don't want to pay a premium price for the absolute best||This mega-portable, waterproof, and durable speaker is perfectly at home on hikes, bike rides, out on the lake, or in the shower||This durable little speaker packs plenty of volume into a waterproof package||A much less expensive, but still enjoyable, portable speaker option for those sticking to a tight budget|
|Rating Categories||Bose SoundLink Micro||JBL Flip 5||JBL Clip 4||Ultimate Ears Wonde...||Anker Soundcore 3|
|Sound Quality (40%)|
|Battery Life (15%)|
|Specs||Bose SoundLink Micro||JBL Flip 5||JBL Clip 4||Ultimate Ears Wonde...||Anker Soundcore 3|
|Dimensions (in x in x in)||1.4" x 3.9" x 3.9"||3.64" x 3.6" x 8.5"||1.8" x 3.4" x 5.3"||3.68" x 3.68" x 4.02"||6.9" x 2.4" x 2.2"|
|Inputs and Charging Ports||3.5 mm auxiliary input, Micro USB port||Micro USB port||USB-C port||Micro USB port||USB-C port|
|Reported Weight (ounces)||10.2 oz||19.04 oz||8.48 oz||15.04 oz||13.12 oz|
|Measured Weight||10.2 oz||19 oz||8.13 oz||14.9 oz||17.8 oz|
|Wireless Range (feet)||30||Not Listed||Not Listed||100||66|
|Reported Battery Life (hours)||6||12||10||13||24|
|Measured Battery Life (hours)||5||27||27||13||16.75|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Bose SoundLink Micro is the best sounding of the smaller, sub 1 pound speakers that we tested. However, it only lasted 5 hours in our battery life testing, which limits its usefulness to trips where you'll frequently have access to an outlet.
The Bose SoundLink Microwas a fairly good all-around performer in our testing, with the exception of battery life, and thus earned a reasonably high overall score. Below we describe the SoundLink Micro's performance in all of the different tests we use to find the best Bluetooth speakers.
The Bose SoundLink Micro sounds incredible for a speaker that is so small. In our sound quality testing. It produced enough bass power to make heavier music sound pleasantly thumpy, and was crisp enough that even complex melodies sounded clear and well defined. Only much larger speakers were able to produce a better, more well-rounded sound in our testing.
The Bose SoundLink Micro earned a perfect score of 10 out of 10 in this metric. It weighs only 10.2 ounces and is IPX7 waterproof, so it can handle full submersion. It also has a rubber strap on the back that allows you to connect it to backpack straps or bike handlebars. This strap isn't too flexible, so don't expect to be able to stretch it around anything much large than an inch in diameter, but it does add a level of convenience.
The Bose SoundLink Micro earned an average score of 6 out of 10 in our volume testing. It is able to get fairly loud, plenty to fill a large bedroom, but it's not loud enough to power a dance party in a large apartment. When outside the Bose SoundLink Micro is plenty loud enough for personal listening and for a group of friends hanging out on the beach, but if there's a lot of ambient noise it can get drowned out.
This is the big caveat in an otherwise excellent speaker. The Bose SoundLink Micro lasted just 5 hours in our battery life testing, putting it towards the bottom of the scoreboard and earning it only a 2 out of 10. 5 hours can slip by quickly if you're taking advantage of this speakers portability and bringing it along on long trips and adventures.
If you want the best possible sound you can get from a speaker that weighs less than a pound, we think it is well worth that price premium.
The Bose SoundLink Micro is a great little speaker, but some may find its short battery life of 5 hours somewhat limiting. If you have reliable access to an outlet, however, it can make hotel rooms and relaxed beach days sound infinitely better.
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