Don’t look now, but I bought another bluetooth speaker. Fresh from my review of the Divoom Onbeat 500 I still can’t believe it but I ended up buying another bluetooth speaker. This time I ended up getting newly-released Bose SoundLink Color. This is my fourth bluetooth speaker to date. But after hearing the sound from the Color I just had to get it. Let’s see if, in this case, four’s a charm.
- - Bluetooth wireless connectivity
- - Voice prompts for pairing
- - 8 hrs battery life
- - USB charging
- - 5 colors
- - 1.25 lbs
- - US$129.95
At first glance the SoundLink color does not look like your typical Bose-designed product. First of all, it’s made of plastic and comes in 5 different colors. Don’t worry though because the plastic material does not feel cheap and as a result it’s even lighter than the SoundLink Mini. If you’re looking for portability then I would choose this over the Mini. Also having a choice of colors is nice. Personally, I like the black and red one.
|SoundLink Color vs Samsung Galaxy Note 3|
Features and Sound Quality:
One of my biggest gripes and the reason I never bought the SoundLink Mini was because of the proprietary charger that you had to use. If you’re using it for travel the last thing you want is an extra bulky charger. It seems Bose listened to its customers and they finally included a standard USB to Micro USB charger which means I can use the same charger as my phone or tablet. They also increased the battery life to 8hours (Mini has only 6 hours). Other interesting new features are the voice prompts and the ability to remember the last 8 devices. This is quite useful when sharing the speakers with friends.
All of these new features are great but in the end it’s really all about sound quality and I must say that it is very good considering its size and reasonable price (well I say reasonable compared to other Bose products). Comparing it to my Divoom Onbeat 500 at low volume it’s hard to notice much difference but as you increase the volume you will clearly hear the SoundLink Color start to pull away. It definitely has a richer base, the mids and highs are more defined and vocals are a lot clearer. To be fair, the cost of the Divoom is half the price so it’s still a good buy considering. Now compared to the SoundLink Mini it’s very hard to notice much difference but the Mini does have slightly punchier base but that doesn’t mean the Color feels lacking. It still has that Bose signature base punch. Vocals on the Color at least to my ears seems clearer compared on the Mini.
If you are looking for a portable Bluetooth speaker at the US$100-150 range then this should be on the top of your list. Bose really did a great job in bringing its signature quality sound down to this price level. The Mini still sounds slightly better but it is also 35% more expensive. If you factor in the better battery life and the USB charging I would still choose the Color over the Mini.
- - Signature Bose sound quality
- - USB charging
- - Price
- - 8 hrs battery life is good but competitors are already at 10-15 hrs
- - No case included
- - No NFC
- - No speaker phone function