Soundboks 2 Review: The Loudest Portable Speaker
Perhaps my Soundboks 2 review will prompt you to buy the Soundboks 2.
If you do, no matter what the weather is, or where you, or what time it is, you'll be having such a party.
The music will blast out for as long as you and your friends can stay awake.
Otherwise, look at the table of contents below to home in on any aspect of the speaker, or keep scrolling for the full review.
Built to Last and In Any Weather
Frustrated by the lack of a loud and durable speaker that couldn’t last the distance at music festivals a group of Danes got together and created the Soundboks speaker. Not satisfied with the first attempt they improved it to become Soundboks 2.
The result is a speaker that overcame all their frustrations and then some.
We’ll talk about “loud” later. Let’s concentrate on durability first.
The Soundboks has durability built-in
There’s the baltic birch plywood for the casing. Solid and natural.
Wrapped around the plywood is the latest scratch-proof powdered aluminum. Now we have strength and protection from rough handling.
And the corners have extruded solid aluminum. Strength yes but also protection with the clever addition of metal balls. It means when you place the speaker on a hard-flat surface there’s a gap, so the wood is not touching the ground.
It saves scratching if someone drags the speaker to a better spot. But, it doesn’t help though if you’ve got bumpy ground and can’t find a flat spot.
But it’s not just the corners that are protected because there is metal piping along the edges.
And that’s not all with the enclosure.
The front of the speaker is covered in a metal grille, so you won’t accidentally damage the sound cones/drivers yet at the same time you can see them thumping away through the small grille holes.
Finally, it is built to handle all different sorts of weather – snow, rain, sun, humidity and extreme temperatures from -4F to 122F.
What’s not to like about that?
It’s a reflection of its heritage. After all, the weather can be brutal in Denmark at the cold, snowy, and rainy end of the weather spectrum.
In keeping with surviving the worst of conditions, the Soundboks 2 is waterproof.
But it’s not waterproof to the extent of having obtained an IPX rating. It does withstand the wet but not to the extent of throwing it into the water and expecting it to survive (although one reviewer has made this very claim).
It’s best also to avoid getting any liquids near the side panel where the on/off knob and AUX input port is.
A final word on durability
In summary, the Soundboks 2 more than meets the brief. It can survive camping parties at music festivals when it’s cold and rainy, and the folks can get wild and crazy.
But more than that it’s great for beach parties or in the heat of the Mojave Desert if you’re into Van Life.
It’s the Loudest with a Sound Quality Ideal for Outdoors
The Soundboks 2 made it to #1 in my list of the loudest portable speakers at a volume of 122 dBs.
But does this come at the expense of sound quality?
Are there any other sacrifices made to produce that loud sound?
First, let’s see how the sound is produced.
What’s Under the Hood?
The Soundboks works with:
- 3 x 72-watt Merus Audio Eximo class D amplifiers with an integrated boost mode which helps to maximize the sound and provides power efficiency for minimizing the drain on the battery.
- 2 x 96 dB custom 10-inch woofers that push out a beefier bass than even powered speakers that normally have just one unit.
- 1 x 98 dB soft dome tweeter
It’s worth noting that the integrated boost mode automatically sets the power setting suitable for your volume. So, all you do is select the volume you want, and you’re ready to party.
And the amplifiers have an efficiency rating of 92% which is 4.5x more efficient than an ordinary stereo.
Now that we know the sound components what’s the sound like?
The sound is loud from lows to highs
It’s worth repeating. You get a loud 122 dBs when you turn the volume up to 11. At that level, there’s a little distortion noticeable but only to an audiophile. It doesn’t affect the party.
The lows are reasonable down to 40Hz. More importantly, because it’s designed as a party speaker, those low-end sounds are loud, extremely loud.
Most small enclosure speakers like the Soundboks can’t get down to this sub-bass region. It’s the patented psycho-acoustics software which enables the Soundboks 2 to play as deep as large subwoofers.
Like all speakers, the richness of the bass depends on the bass sound being delivered by the source music.
If your music has “Little Bass” you will get Louder Little Bass. If your music has “Heavy Bass” you will get Louder Heavy Bass.
The highs are clean and reach 20kHz. Again, it’s loud and enough to compete and overcome the outdoor sounds of the wind, and the waves, and the crowd.
Not too much has been sacrificed for the sound
The Soundboks 2 doesn’t have any tone or equalization controls. So, you can’t tweak it to personalize the sound.
But you can use the new indoor/outdoor switch to match the output to your environment. Switch to optimize the sound for the space involved.
The outdoor setting has increased loudness while the indoor setting adjusts the bass performance.
The sound only comes out of one side, so you may have to adjust the direction of the speaker.
The result is you won’t be able to keep people away
Outside you’ll get people coming from everywhere when you get the music pumping. And they’ll be dancing not just listening. It’ll become a rocking block party without trying.
Indoors you still get the loud sound, but the bass is toned down so your ears can cope and the sound profile accounts for the sound waves bouncing off the walls and ceiling.
What else is there about the Sound?
You can hook up a wireless mic. So, you could let your parents use it for spruiking and announcements at the local fair.
On its own, the Soundboks 2 plays in mono. That’s ok for most outdoor happenings, but if your friend or friends have a Soundboks as well, you can hook them up and create a stereo sound.
The Battery is the Best You Can Buy with the Longest Playtime
Like every component in the Soundboks 2, the battery is a quality product, built to last, handle the worst of conditions, and has the longest playtime life of any portable speaker.
Let’s look at why it’s a quality product:
- It’s a military grade lithium-ion battery so it’ll survive high temperatures, high humidity, and the freezing cold. Conditions that are far worse than what you’ll want to be outdoors in.
- It’s replaceable, so the music will never stop as it does with a built-in battery. Take out the flat battery and slide in the fully charged standby one, and you’re back in full swing.
- It’s rechargeable with a charging time of only 4 hours. If you’re close to a power outlet, you can even keep playing while it’s charging. In this instance, the recharge will take a little longer.
- It has LED lights to give you plenty of warning that the battery is running out of juice.
- It has a playtime that surpasses any other portable speaker. At top volume, you’ll get 8 hours of uninterrupted music. At moderate volumes, you won’t be able to stay awake because it’ll keep going for up to 40 hours.
With quality like this, and with a spare on hand you can go away for a few days camping and not have to worry about the music dying.
But you’ll have to find another way to keep your phone or other smart devices charged because there’s no USB port.
The battery is easily changed. It has a handle on it and slides in smoothly, guided by grooves in the cavity above one of the handles.
Portability – You Can Carry It to The Party
The Soundboks 2 is built to last and produce loud music.
You don’t meet that requirement by building a small speaker. And it’s not.
All up it’s a little over two feet tall, a foot and a half wide, and a foot deep, and weighs 33 lbs.
It is portable with handles on each side that make it manageable:
- For one person to carry it a short distance.
- Or with two people, one on each side, to take it further if it’s a mile or so to the beach or into the festival.
But over a mile or two it is too far to carry with the handles.
If this happens you can:
- Strap it to a small hand cart if you have one.
- Or spend the extra money and buy the backpack attachment.
Find Out If It’s for You
So, you’ve seen how:
- Durable it is.
- Loud it is and the quality of its sound.
- Long the battery lasts.
- ortable it is.
Who then is it best for?
As you’ve probably guessed you won’t be using it to relax and listen to your favorite classical music in the comfort of your living room.
That’s not to say you won’t use it indoors. It’s most likely though you won’t be on your own. You’ll use it for a party or getting together with your friends to chill out listening to music more of a rock’n’roll, beat, or rap variety.
It’s outdoors where the Soundboks shines.
It is a loud, portable, weatherproof speaker that overcomes background noise and the sound of wind, waves or traffic.
It’s an “on the go” speaker.
Think of an outside venue and lots of people, and you’re unlikely to go wrong:
- Your Local Block.
- At the Beach Bonfire.
- At a Music Festival.
- Street Side Busking.
- At a Wedding Reception.
- Mobile DJing.
- Van Living.
- At a Company Picnic.
- At a Backyard Birthday Bash.
- Anything else you can think of?
Remember though there may be times when you’ll need to turn it down out of respect for those who are not with your crowd. Know when you can blast out and when the music is a bit much for others.
What’s in the Box?
It’s always exciting when you buy something and get to open it the minute it arrives.
Let me explain what’ll you’ll get when it finally does arrive. Hopefully, this won’t spoil the pleasure in opening the box.
At 46.4 lbs. it will be heavy when it lands at your front door.
When you strip off the protective packaging, and if you haven’t bought any extras, you’ll find the following:
- The Soundboks 2.
- The replaceable battery.
- The charger.
- The AUX cable.
- The manual.
A word of warning. Keep the packaging if you need to return the unit.
The Soundboks 2 itself weighs 33 lbs. and measures:
- 25.6 inches high.
- 17 inches wide.
- 13 inches deep.
It Doesn’t Take Long to Get Started
Getting started is easy. Look at this video.
You’ve got the box open, and now you want to try it out.
Are the controls complicated?
Not at all.
The metal grille is the front of the speaker.
The battery needs to be charged for four hours before using it. Once charged slide it into the cavity that sits above the handle on the left side.
Looking at the right side, you’ll see the volume knob, the input knob, and a LED light. The light is either green (indoor) or blue (outdoor) depending on what mode you select. I do find it annoying that when you’re using Bluetooth, you can’t control the sound from your device. You must walk to the speaker to make a change.
On the same side you’ll find two ports:
- The DC input port. You can use this to charge the battery even while it’s playing or play directly from the Soundboks charger (which is connected to a power outlet) and not use the battery at all.
- The AUX/JACK input port.
Not much to it is there? Now here’s how to connect.
It Comes with an Auxiliary Connection
If you’re not using Bluetooth:
- Turn on the input knob for power.
- Turn further to select the playing mode (outdoor or indoor) you want.
- Plug in your auxiliary cable to the AUX/JACK input port and your device. With a constant blue or violet light, you have a connection.
That’s it, the Soundboks is already blasting out your music.
You can connect to your phone, player, PC or tablet using the 3.5mm auxiliary cable that comes in the box.
With hardwired input like this, you’ll have a little extra volume and better-quality audio than Bluetooth streaming.
If you’re connecting to Bluetooth., there’s one more step
And There’s a Bluetooth Connection as Well
The Soundboks 2 has Bluetooth 3.0. It’s not the latest version but does provide proven reliability of connection and was installed to avoid any possibility of interference from the protective metal grille in the front of the speaker.
When you turn on the power knob to indoor or outdoor mode, the Bluetooth indicator starts blinking. Find the Soundboks in your device settings and connect. Simple as that.
If you’re connecting multiple Soundboks’ use the serial number found on the top of your speaker to recognize and connect to your Soundboks. You’ll need to buy the Proboks Accessory pack to connect to a maximum of six.
What’s required when you open the box, give the Soundboks 2 a workout and decide it’s not for you:
First up, there’s a 30-day money back guarantee so don’t waste any time organizing its return.
Second, return everything you received in its original box and in its original condition. Any signs of scratches, marks, or visual damage will incur a 25% deduction.
Email Soundboks at [email protected] and they’ll guide you through the process.
You’ll get a 2-year limited warranty that starts from the day you receive the Soundboks.
The warranty only applies to you as the original buyer, so you can’t transfer or assign it to another buyer.
Like most warranties it only covers repairs required to remedy:
- Manufacturing errors.
- Damage suffered in transit.
What I Don’t Like
- It only has 2 modes (outdoor and indoor) and no equalizer to personalize the balance of the sound.
- It’s too heavy for me to take backpacking, but then it wasn’t built for that purpose.
- You can’t charge your phone, by why worry when you’re listening to the music.
- It’s not a big deal, but you can’t use your Bluetooth to switch modes or turn off the speaker. You must turn the knobs.
- I wish it was less expensive.
What I Like
- The loudest sound at 121dBs.
- It’s durability. You can take it anywhere in any weather.
- The long battery playtime. It keeps going longer than you can.
- The excellent outdoor sound quality.
The Soundboks 2 does come at a price. But you get the quality you pay for.
It’s built to last, survives extreme weather, has a long playtime and is portable.
It is the loudest of all portable speakers and a sound quality that’s right for the outdoors.
What’s not to like?
You can’t go wrong when you buy the Soundboks 2 for any outside gathering. No one will complain about not being able to hear the music.
People will flock to the speaker whether you have a block party going, or a beach bonfire, or chilling out at a music festival. You can take it anywhere. And the party won’t run out of music.