The new Wonderboom 2 ($100) from Ultimate Ears is a killer little Bluetooth speaker that packs a lot of punch for its tiny size. It sounds great, lasts forever, and is probably bombproof. It’s a winner all around.
Ultimate Ears and JBL have long been my favorite brands on the Bluetooth speaker scene, with the JBL Charge 2+ being my go-to option for the last several years. But the new Wonderboom 2 from UE finally unseated my trusty Charge as my new favorite little speaker. It’s the best balance of portability, sound quality, battery life, and robustness I’ve ever seen (and heard). It’s the speaker I’d design if I designed speakers.
Right out of the box, I was admittedly skeptical of the Wonderboom 2’s tiny stature. But those concerns were quickly put to rest as I fired it up and started jamming to the same test playlist I’ve been using on speakers and headphones for years. For being so small, this speaker packs a surprisingly big punch.
Despite its short, tubby build, the Wonderboom 2 provides rich sound quality—more bass than one normally expects from a speaker of this size, along with equally as impressive high- and mid-response. The overall clarity and range of this speaker can’t be overstated—it sounds shockingly big for being so small. It also gets quite loud, although, maybe not loud enough for big, open spaces. But UE has a solution for that: Outdoor Mode.
There’s a button on the bottom of the speaker with a little tree on it. Once activated, it increases the speaker’s overall volume and frequency response. This mode reduces bass, while upper mids and highs become more present; this allows the speaker to push more sound without distorting (read: it’s a lot louder). It’s a super cool feature—especially because it’s easily toggled at the touch of a button.
Speaking of buttons, let’s talk about the others found across the top and front of the device. The front houses two huge volume buttons (up and down, heh) that also serve as a battery life indicator when pressed together. The top has three buttons: a Bluetooth button for pairing, a power button, and a multifunction Play/Pause/Skip Track button in the center. I’m always happy to see media controls present on speakers, as I might not always be able to use my phone to control playback. Good on UE for throwing this little button the Wonderboom 2.
Since I brought it up, let’s talk about the Wonderboom 2’s battery life, which can only be summed up as insane. I charged the speaker when I first got it, and it hasn’t hit the charger since. I initially tried to keep track of how many hours of use I got out of it (as I do with most reviews), but I lost track around hour 20 or so. It’s probably sitting at around 24-26 hours of playback at a consistent 1/3-1/2 volume, which is next-level impressive. Of course, you can expect less time the higher the volume gets (and even less with Outdoor Mode enabled), but even then, you’re probably looking at a minimum of 10 hours. The thing just never stops. The worst thing about the battery? It charges over micro USB. It’s time for manufacturers to stop doing this—USB-C is the future.
Finally, I love the overall size of the Wonderboom 2, which stands at just over 4 inches in height, with a circumference of around 3.75 inches. This might be the weirdest thing I’ve ever said in a review, but I really enjoy holding the Wonderboom 2—it fits perfectly in my hand. It’s a strange sensation to enjoy holding a speaker, but here we are.
The speaker’s weight comes in right at 425 grams according to my scale, which is just a bit heavier than an unopened can of soda (around 370 grams). In other words, tossing it in your bag is no big deal, because it’s not very heavy.
Overall, the Wonderboom 2 from Ultimate Ears is one of the best Bluetooth speakers you can buy right now—especially, at this size. It’s a great buy at the $100 retail price, but you can pick one up right now for $80, which is a bargain for such a great little speaker.
Here’s What We Like
- Excellent size
- Waterproof and robust
- Battery lasts forever
- Great sound for its size
And What We Don't
- Charges over microUSB instead of USB-C