Having reviewed a variety of Bluetooth speakers over the years, I've seen (or heard) it all. Some have been great with a lot to offer and others have been pretty generic with subpar sound quality. But once in a while, a Bluetooth speaker comes along that really exceeds my expectations. Enter the world of Bose.
Bose is the kind of brand that I've heard about all my life, but never actually took an interest in owning any of their products. This is primarily due to the fact that Bose products have always been a little out of my reach in regards to price. Much like Apple, Bose tends to charge a premium for everything they sell. Well, at least most things.
The Bose SoundLink Mini II is a Bluetooth portable speaker that retails for just $199. Not only is this more affordable than expected, but the speaker has a lot going for it. Its overall design is beautiful and the build quality is just fantastic. While a little on the heavy side, the exceptional sound quality more than makes up for it. Believe me, this thing does not disappoint.
Playback controls on top include power, volume down, mode, volume up and a Bluetooth pair button. On the side of the speaker is a 3.5mm connection for headphones, as well as a micro-USB port. And charging? It's seamless, thanks to the included charging cradle. Simply place the speaker in the cradle and you're good to go. Battery life is an estimated 10 hours.
Getting into specifics, sound quality of the SoundLink Mini II doesn't even compare to portable speakers that I've used in the past. For the most part, highs and lows sound crystal clear and bass performance is simply awesome. There have been those brief moments where lows can sound a bit muddy, but this issue can be resolved by adjusting the EQ on whichever device you're using to play audio.
In regards to Bluetooth range, Bose says a max of 30 feet should do it. My iPhone is typically within inches of the speaker when playing music, so I have yet to experience any kind of dropout during playback.
Do you know what I enjoy most about the SoundLink Mini II? It works exactly as advertised. Bose has created a speaker that only excels in the audio department, but it also looks good doing so. For the user who cares about a product's design and performance, this is the speaker for you. Buy it here and you'll thank me later.