Portable bluetooth speakers review: Jabra solemate

Besides our issues with bass, what you'll get is a no-nonsense performer that gives you 8 hours of playback whether you're at home or at the beach.

The original Jabra Solemate has been out for a while (we covered its debut at Comex 2012) and this portable shoe-shaped speaker - hence the name - was one of the few rugged speakers out there that was dust-, shock- and splash-proof. 

The second-generation Solemate gains a few technical advances such as NFC for touch-based device pairing, enhanced Dolby sound support and digital equalizer through an updated Jabra Sound app, plus funky new colors (red, black, yellow, cyan, white and grey ) that actually matches its rugged outdoors persona. Jabra has also gone with USB charging instead of providing a mains charger.

Otherwise, the removable sole still holds an included audio cable, and the speaker itself remains largely unchanged from its initial incarnation. Pairing by Bluetooth was a relatively fuss-free affair, and we didn't experience any connection drops throughout our testing.

The Solemate uses front facing speakers (two tweeters and a woofer) and a propriety passive bass radiator to produce sound, and produces enough sound to fill a regular sized bedroom (or slightly small living room).

We found that the Solemate focuses more on the mid tones and the high notes, handling vocals well on tracks like Adele's Melt My Heart to Stone and Hotel California by the Eagles, but sounding a little dry on the low frequencies.

Honestly speaking, we expected better bass given that the Solemate sports a dedicated bass radiator.

Besides our issues with bass, what you'll get is a no-nonsense performer that gives you 8 hours of playback whether you're at home or at the beach.

AT A GLANCE

Dimensions: 6.77 x 2.52 x 2.75 inches

Weight: 0.61kg

Power Output: 9W

Price: $228


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