Best Bluetooth Speaker 2018
- 1 Best Bluetooth Speaker 2018
- 2 Best Bluetooth Speaker 2018
- 2.1 Best Bluetooth Speakers under 50 Dollars
- 2.2 Best Bluetooth Speaker under 100 Dollars
- 2.3 Best Bluetooth Speaker Under 200 Dollars
- 2.4 Best Portable Bluetooth Speakers Roundup
The most limiting or enabling factors in the purchase of any product is the budget of a purchaser. It is an obvious fact that spending more money gets you a much more refined Bluetooth speaker. The categorization of Bluetooth speakers by price is the most common way to break down different groupings of speakers. This article presents the best Bluetooth speaker in 2018 by the overall quality and subsequentially the best from each standard price range. The best overall speaker, best Bluetooth speaker under 50 dollars, best Bluetooth speaker under 100 dollars and best Bluetooth speaker under 200 dollars categories will hopefully give all of you a product that suits your needs. Our Bluetooth speaker buyers guide clearly outlines the most important considerations when purchasing a Bluetooth speaker. I highly recommend you read that before commencing with this article if you have limited knowledge on the matter. The principal thing that price increases from one model to another is better sound quality and volume. The reality is that many of the cheapest have some degree of waterproofing and are very portable.
The best Bluetooth speaker of 2018 is clearly the Bose SoundLink Revolve Plus. Bose is a higher end brand which features a lot on this website because they create some of the best speakers for many uses. The Bose SoundLink Revolve Plus is an expensive purchase, but it really hits mark on practically every important piece of criteria. The best Bluetooth speaker under 50 dollars or best budget Bluetooth speaker is the highly portable Anker SoundCore 2. In the best Bluetooth speaker under 100 dollars category, the JBL Flip 4 is the winner due to being a very well rounded and full feeling product. Finally, the best Bluetooth speaker under 200 dollars is the Bose SoundLink Revolve. This speaker is a smaller and quieter version of our chosen overall winner, meaning it is one of the best Bluetooth speakers that you can buy.
Best Bluetooth Speaker 2018
Bose SoundLink Revolve Plus
The SoundLink Revolve Plus is the ultimate offering in the Bluetooth speaker market in 2018. Bose is one of the best-known speaker brands in the world and the company has successfully brought their A game to when making their Bluetooth Speakers. With the SoundLink Revolve Plus, you get the most valued features in a Bluetooth speaker met with impeccable standards. The pristine sound quality relative to the compactness is pretty incredible. The speaker’s system is comprised of opposing passive bass radiators which give a clean and full feeling that is not matched in terms of quality. The mids are punchy and the highs are crisp and clear. It also packs a punch with its maximum volume exceeding speakers of the same size by some margin. In all honesty, there is not much bad to say here, especially when compared to the rest of the market.
It also comes equipped with IPX4 water-resistance, AUX input, 16 hours of battery life, effective 360 degrees sound, easy portability through the handle and a classy design. The 360 degree sound is exceptionally good with equal and powerful sound the whole way around. In an ideal world, the water rating would be a bit better. An IPX4 rating means it will withhold some light rain or splashes but is not appropriate for full submersion. In practice, you would have to be careful as too much splashing would in reality cause some damage.
With this excellence does come a higher price tag of $300 and given the cheap nature of many Bluetooth speakers, it will be preferable in many instances to go with a cheap option under $50. Another con would be some distortion at maximum volume. This is unlikely to be a big problem as this speaker goes pretty darn loud.
- Best sound
- Very good 360 degrees sound
- Strong battery life
- Good design
- Only IPX4
- Not as portable as some other options
The Revolve Plus is considered by many as the best the Bluetooth speaker around at the moment and if you decide to go with it, rest assured you will not be disappointed.
Best Bluetooth Speakers under 50 Dollars
The best Bluetooth speakers under 50 dollar contenders are marketed as offering a compact, portable and waterproof speaker perfect for traveling. With the price of Bluetooth speakers you really pay for sound quality and given that you shouldn’t expect to be completely wowed by even the best Bluetooth speaker under 50 dollars. That said, it is pretty incredible what such a cheap price can get you in a speaker. Deciding the best Bluetooth speaker under 50 dollars was probably the hardest subcategory to decide a winner for in this article. Generally, the size, features and the sound quality were so marginally different between the best Bluetooth speaker under 50 dollars contenders. When deciding the best Bluetooth speaker under 50 dollars, we wanted to consider what would be the best travel buddy in this price range as these devices were built to be taken out into nature with you. Our best Bluetooth speaker under 50 dollars is the Anker SoundCore 2 for its higher sound quality and bass driven dance-like nature, letting you take the party wherever you go. Not far behind was the Oontz Angle 3 Plus and Doss touch. These two products did not get the best Bluetooth speaker under 50 dollars top spot due to having a slightly worse sound quality.
1. Anker SoundCore 2
The Anker SoundCore 2 is perhaps the most known out of our best Bluetooth speaker under 50 dollars list. It is highly portable, fitting nicely into large coat pockets and the low price presents an option for a Bluetooth speaker that it is hard to go wrong with. The sound of this model is driven by the low frequencies, making it a great budget choice for those looking for some pounding bass for punchy dance music. The battery life of 24 hours and the light and compact nature of the speaker mean that it can be taken with you and be operated intermittently for a long period. The sound quality, like with the other chosen best Bluetooth speaker under 50 dollar, is questionable compared to the more expensive options although it is still at the level where the audio feels good to listen to. The higher frequencies are relatively not as good as the bass and can come across a little harshly, especially at higher volumes. It has an IPX5 waterproof rating, meaning it can deal with light splashes but not full submersions. Despite a few negatives it is hard to go wrong at a mere $40. The size, sound, and price make the Anker SoundCore 2 the perfect travel buddy and the best speaker under 50 dollars.
- Punchy bass
- Decent battery life
- IPX5 waterproof rating
- Mids and highs a little harsh
2. OontZ Angle 3 Plus
The Oontz Angle 3 Plus is another solid and cheap bet of a speaker which has received much praise for its sound quality and loud volume. When it came down to it, there was little in it when deciding the best Bluetooth speaker under 50 dollar. The Oontz Angle 3 Plus is similar to the Anker SoundCore 2 in regards to being a bass-driven Bluetooth speaker but lacking some brightness in the higher frequencies. It has a very solid battery life of 30 hours and is equipped with a microphone much like the other two models in this category. It also shares the same IPX5 rating with the Anker SoundCore 2 and has a better portability rating due to being ever so slightly lighter and smaller. In practice, the 3-ounce difference and 1-inch reduction in size are unlikely to be noticeable. Where the Oontz Angle 3 Plus loses out to the best Bluetooth speaker under 50 dollars, the Anker SoundCore 2, is the overall sound quality of the bass, treble, clarity and dynamic range. Sound quality the most important feature in our eyes when it comes to Bluetooth speakers. Our decisions, including the choosing the best Bluetooth speaker under 50 dollars are heavily impacted by it. Given the similarities in these speakers, the sound quality was the tipping point.
-30 hours of battery life
-Sound quality not as good as Anker SoundCore 2
3. Doss Touch
The Doss Touch comes in at $10 less than the Anker SoundCore 2, with a relatively crisp and clear sound at most volumes. In our selection of the best Bluetooth speaker under 50 dollars, the Touch is the cheapest option. Like all our top pick speakers in this price category, it is hard to go wrong with this option due to the cheap cost. It loses out to the other models due to not having any IPX waterproof rating, a less punchy overall sound, and a shorter battery life. Additionally, the bass isn’t quite there as it is with the Anker or Oontz Angle, making it a better budget choice for music which features more higher frequencies and less of the lower frequencies. It does, however, share a fairly similar size, a similar version of Bluetooth 4.0 and a microphone with the Anker Soundcore 2. All in all, this is still a solid choice for a cheaper price, but we would certainly recommend paying that little bit more for the best Bluetooth speaker under 50 dollars.
- Cheapest options
- Good higher frequencies
- Lacks bass
- No waterproof rating
Given the marginal price differences, we would highly recommend purchasing the Anker SoundCore 2 as we believe it is the best Bluetooth speaker under 50 dollars. The Oontz and the Doss are not bad choices, but the extra $5-$10 is so minimal that we don’t think it is worth deterring from the Anker SoundCore 2 just because of the price. In some cases, the Doss Touch may be the best Bluetooth speaker under 50 dollars if your music is naturally less bassy and you aren’t looking for a party boomer of a speaker. For bass driven and typically more punchy and dancier music the other two options are more suitable.
Best Bluetooth Speaker under 100 Dollars
With an added $50 to your limit, your speaker gets better sounding, louder, more waterproof and slightly bigger. The best Bluetooth speaker under 100 dollars category is where the music sounds start good, loud and are suitable for the pool. Our choices include options where the RRP is actually over $100 but are usually available on Amazon for less than this. The JBL Flip 4 is the best Bluetooth speaker under 100 dollars by some margin, mostly because it is noticeably clearer. The design of these speakers is a factor that we try to judge as much on majority consensus as it is relatively a subjective factor, in contrast to the factual features such as waterproof rating and battery life that these speakers have. The second best Bluetooth speaker under 100 dollars goes to the Anker SoundCore Pro+, a strong and sturdy speaker perfect for the garden. Finally, the third best Bluetooth speaker is the Ultimate Ears Wonderboom due to its pumping maximum volume along with many other features.
1. SpeakJBL Flip 4
The JBL Flip 4 is undoubtedly the best Bluetooth speaker under 100 dollars and on another level to the speakers in the under 50 dollar category. The principal difference with any price increase is the sound quality, which applies to all frequencies. When you compare the JBL Flip 4 to the models discussed in the under $50 category, you get a much clearer sound with higher clarity at all distances. The bass is not necessarily more powerful but is certainly tighter. The sound quality of the Flip 4 was a critical factor in gaining the top spot in our best Bluetooth speaker under 100 dollars rankings. The JBL Flip 4 also works with JBL’s Connect+ function so it is possible to daisy chain over 100 Flip 4s together. Where the JBL Flip falls short is a limited battery life. Although it supposedly lasts 12 hours, at a maximum volume it only realistically lasts 4 hours. The bass is also relatively sub-par compared to the higher frequencies, although it is still rather decent for a speaker in its price range. The ally, the JBL Flip 4 is highly water resistant carrying an IPX7 rating meaning it can be submerged in water. This Bluetooth speaker was actually designed for the pool which is clear with its trunks styles strap.
Its RRP is actually $110, although on Amazon it normally sells for $20-$30 less than this. You may argue that it is controversial to award this top spot for best Bluetooth speaker under 100 dollars, but at BestBluetoothSound we like to work in practical terms!
- Clearest sound
- JBL Connect+ over 100 speakers
- IPX7 waterproof rating
- Perfect for Pool
- Battery life claims questionable
- Bass not as good as mids & highs
2. Anker SoundCore Pro+
The Anker SoundCore Pro+ is a powerful, sturdy and crisp Bluetooth speaker. Where this speaker shines is in the mid and higher frequencies through its 4 professionally-tuned drivers. Other features worth noting with this speaker are its IPX4 waterproof rating, meaning it is splash proof, 18 hours of battery life and the useful micro USB dock for phone charging. This phone charging option and the battery life exceed the JBL FLIP 4. Excessive Charging of your phone via the SoundCore Pro+ will, however, cut down on your speaker battery life somewhat. It also has an AUX port unlike the other two choices in this price range.
The JBL Flip beat the Anker SoundCore Pro+ as best Bluetooth speaker under 100 dollars because of its ruffled bass, weight, and worse waterproof rating. Relative to its size it is quite a heavy piece weighing 1.68lbs, making it about 50 percent heavier than the Flip 4, and of course portability is key. This weight increase does, however, reflect the use of sturdy and strong materials. This kind of tradeoff, as any other, comes down to the purchaser’s unique needs and uses of the speaker. Given this, the best Bluetooth speaker under 100 dollars that we chose may not be the best for every unique situation. The waterproof rating of IPX4 isn’t a complete letdown, but it obviously isn’t as good as the best Bluetooth speaker under 100 dollars. These features are explained as the Anker mid-range speaker is marketed as a home or garden speaker. Not one for far travels but great for the garden.
- Good mids & highs
- 18 hours battery
- AUX input
- Ruffled bass
- only IPX4
3. Ultimate Ears WONDERBOOM
The Ultimate Ears WONDERBOOM is a very distinctly styled and shaped Bluetooth speaker which is designed for the pool. This product is much aligned with the FLIP 4 rather than the SoundCore Pro+, mostly due to sharing an IPX7 rating. It is very loud for its size, louder than both the other best Bluetooth speaker under 100 dollar options. The battery life is 10 hours but a blast at full volume will give you a reasonable 6 hours of beats. The bass is a little too full on at times and the midrange sometimes sounds off, which is why we have made it was our third choice in our best Bluetooth speaker under 100 dollars. The sound is multidirectional and it is possible to pair two WONDERBOOMs together for a wide music radius. It is a relatively loud and bass speaker for its size so combining all these factors provides you with the ultimate budget pool party.
A shortfall of the WONDERBOOM comes from the lack of a clear indicator of battery life and charging time. Pressing both the increase and decrease volumes button simultaneously results in the speaker projecting three tones to indicate whether the battery is low, medium or high, lacking precision. Charging the WONDERBOOM also uses this vague system, as such may cause general annoyance during its use.
Overall, the WONDERBOOM is a great product to pack with your volleyball and certainly a best Bluetooth speaker under 100 dollars.
- Good for the pool
- Sometimes to bassy
- Mids can be distorted
- Poor battery life indication
JBL, Ultimate Ears, and Anker are leaders in mid price range speakers, so it is no wonder their products ranked in our top 3 best Bluetooth speakers under 100 dollars list. The JBL Flip 4 is undoubtedly the best Bluetooth speaker under 100 dollars due to having the best sound quality. The Anker SoundCore Pro+ is second for the next best sound quality although the WONDERBOOM is a loud, 360 degree enabled and highly waterproof speaker that some may prefer. All these decisions ultimately come down to how each unique users wishes to use their Bluetooth speaker. We personally don’t think that being pool ready should be a the leading factor in our best Bluetooth speaker under 100 dollars rankings, but we appreciate that many readers do. Aside from the waterproof rating, the JBL Flip 4 would still have ranked as our top pick for best Bluetooth speaker under 100 dollars over the SoundCore Pro+.
Best Bluetooth Speaker Under 200 Dollars
When you consider the best Bluetooth speaker under 200 dollars category, you are almost considering some of the best Bluetooth speakers you can buy. The true best tend to be a little bit more than this, for example, the Bose SoundLink Revolve Plus is $300. This is where the money starts to get heftier, so make sure you get the best Bluetooth speaker under 200 dollars is essential. Within the best Bluetooth speaker under 200 dollars category you get well rounded and high quality sounds. The main difference is more the quality than the volume when jumping up from the 100 categories, although quite a few of these speakers are a little bit louder. Any purchaser looking for this attribute is better off looking for Bluetooth speakers which are designed to be loud rather than pricing category. For a relatively cheap price, you can get some real boomers. Interestingly, the Bose SoundLink Revolve which is the junior version is the top pick for our best Bluetooth speaker under 200 dollars. As you will see it is almost on the same level as the Revolve+. Our second choice for best Bluetooth speaker under 200 dollars is the JBL Xtreme which actually has an RRP of 300 dollars. This speaker is still fantastic, it just doesn’t have the same quality as you get with Bose.
The Bose SoundLink Revolve is effectively the junior version of our top choice of Bluetooth speaker in 2018, the Revolve+. Therefore it is no surprise that is a fantastic speaker sharing many of the same merits as the Revolve+, making it the best Bluetooth Speaker under 200 dollars. The first obvious comparison is that it is almost identical although it is slightly smaller without a handle. With this versions, you get a whole range of features such as 360 degree sound, an IPX4 water resistance rating, Siri and Google Assistant, voice commands, the Bose app and a party & stereo mode.
It is a bit of a shame that this model doesn’t have a handle as it makes it that little bit less transportable. It is a small speaker though only weigh 1.46 lbs so it would likely go unnoticed in a backpack.
The sound quality of the Soundlink Revolve is one of the best Bluetooth Speaker under 200 dollars. The sound quality of the lows, mids, and highs are pretty impeccable with none showing any real weakness. The clarity is there in the mids and highs, and the two passive bass radiators give deep and clear low frequencies. The bass is where most speakers tend to not quite deliver on if there are deficits in the quality, so hats off to Bose for delivering on it. The 360 degree sound is even and effective so no real criticism can be offered with that.
When compared to the Revolve+, the main differences appear to the battery life, the handle and the volume. In reality, the Revolves sound quality is practically up to par with the Revolve+ and will likely be loud enough for any circumstance you may wish to use it. Finally, Bost takes the third place with its SoundLink Color II being one of the best Bluetooth speakers under 200 dollars.
- Best sound quality
- Amazing 360 degrees sound
- No handle like the Revolve+
- Only IPX4
2. JBL Xtreme
The JBL Xtreme is the second best Bluetooth speaker under 200 dollars available at the moment. Admittedly, its RRP is $300 but on Amazon, you can normally purchase one below $200. As you would expect with a speaker of this price, the Xtreme delivers pretty solidly on all fronts. The design is very similar to the Flip 3 but just a fair bit bigger and much louder. This speaker is a real boomer on the low end. It carries dual external passive radiators that relentlessly pumps out the bass, although at times it can be a little muddy and uncontrolled sounding. The overall sound quality is to a high standard with a good balance of each frequency range and delivering on its price tag. The Xtreme does a solid job at delivering on other key features such as a 15-hour battery life which is pretty darn good relative to its size and volume. The Xtreme is also splashproof so it can deal with light rain but not full submersions. Given the battery, splashproof rating and weight of 4.6 lbs, it is quite a portable speaker. One slight annoyance comes with the zip it has covering its USB and AUX ports. It is a tight fit and can be fiddly to plug in via these ports. It is also possible to pair multiple JBL speakers together via the Connect+ app. If you already have a JBL speaker and were looking to purchase a speaker in this price category then this is a strong argument for getting the Xtreme.
- Good battery life for volume
- JBL Connect+ app
- Booming bass
- Not fully waterproof
- Bass sometimes ruffled
3. Bose SoundLink Color II
The Bose SoundLink Color II is a very compact and lightweight speaker which doesn’t lose out on many other features despite its size. The SoundLink Micro is our top choice as a portable speaker and its bigger counterpart, the SoundLink Color II, is a similar beast with some subtle differences. It presents a slightly cheaper option that is one of the best Bluetooth Speaker under 200 dollars.
The key features that come with the Color II include a splashproof IPX4 rating, high portability, and a large sound. One problem with the SoundLink II is that it comes with a charging cable only without any wall adaptor. This can be purchased separately and maybe a slight nuisance to those wanting to use this as a stationary speaker at home. It infers the intent of Bose with this speaker; it is for on the go. An effortless addition that accompanies your speaker.
Another negative is the speakerphone not working coherently with Bluetooth. The impact of this negative comes down to the intention of use with the speaker. Another plus of the SoundLink Color II is integrating of Siri and Google assistant. This is activated by holding the multifunction button. The sound of this speaker is especially loud, most likely enough to fit your needs. If you are intent on having a large outdoor party you would probably want something else.
When you go up in budget, Bluetooth speakers reach a point where there are no massive faults but it just doesn’t reach the level of excellence as you do with the best Bluetooth Speaker under 200 dollars. The SoundLink Color II is one of those speakers. It is a good speaker and the boxes are ticked in regards to the standard of each frequency. It just doesn’t quite have that excellence that speakers such as the bose Revolve+ have.
- Very portable
- Cheaper option in this category
- No wall adapter included
- Not 360 degree sound
Bose is perhaps the best brand in the game at the moment, especially in the best Bluetooth Speaker under 200 dollars category. When you have the Revolve Plus as your older brother, the odds are stacked in your favor to be the best Bluetooth Speaker under 200 dollars. When you get up to this price range the quality of speakers begins to become really, really good. Provided you stick to the big brands like Bose, JBL or Ultimate Ears, you will receive a product that will no doubt satisfy you. All of the picks in the best Bluetooth Speaker under 200 dollars are absolutely excellent additions to your audio life.
Best Portable Bluetooth Speakers Roundup
We hope you have gained some valuable information from our choices of each best Bluetooth speaker in 2018. We hope that all you readers are able to identify the right speaker for you or learned some valuable information. Each budget range has different brands that are the best choices. To round up all of our choices:
Best Bluetooth Speaker 2018:
Best Bluetooth Speaker Under 50 Dollars:
3rd Doss Touch
Best Bluetooth Speaker Under 100 Dollars:
1st JBL Flip 4
Best Bluetooth Speaker Under 200 Dollars:
2nd JBL Xtreme
To gain more knowledge on Bluetooth speakers and what to look out for when making purchasing decisions read our Bluetooth speaker buyers guide.