Divoom Voombox Outdoor review: A Bluetooth contender but not quite a champion

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Divoom Voombox Outdoor (black)

(Part #: Voombox-Outdoor Black)
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3.5 stars

CNET Editors' Rating

The Good The Divoom Voombox Outdoor is compact, rugged wireless Bluetooth speaker that's splashproof and plays very loud for its size. It's equipped with Bluetooth 4.0 and has a built-in speakerphone. It's well suited for casual listening outdoors.

The Bad While it sounds good with many tracks, it can also have a harsh edge to it at higher volumes.

The Bottom Line While Voombox Outdoor doesn't quite knock it out of the park with its sound quality, it plays very loudly for its size and offers a sturdy build quality for an affordable price.

7.9 Overall
  • Design 8.0
  • Features 7.0
  • Sound quality 7.0
  • Value 8.0

The Divoom Voombox Outdoor is a compact, water-resistant, wireless Bluetooth device that's designed -- you guessed it -- for outdoor use. With a list price of $100 USD or £100 (you can find it online for 10 to 20 percent less), it's the step-up model to Divoom's hockey-puck sized Voombox Travel, and produces good (though not great) sound for both its size and price point.

This ruggedized model comes in a few different trim colors, including the red you see pictured here, as well as blue, olive green, and all black. Weighing in at 1.6 pounds or 726 grams, the speaker seems sturdily built and has a set of sealed, rubberized buttons on top of the unit, including a pause/play button and volume controls.

To prevent water from entering the Micro-USB charging port and audio input on the side, there's a rubber gasket that seals everything off. Unlike some speakers that are completely waterproof, this one is only rated as being splashproof.

As far as other extras go, there's a built-in speakerphone -- it worked well so long as I stayed close to the speaker -- and the speaker is equipped with Bluetooth 4.0, which makes pairing with your Bluetooth-enabled smartphone or tablet that much easier.

Battery life is rated at 12 hours at moderate volume levels, and on iOS devices, a battery-life indicator is shown in the top-right corner of your screen.

Performance

That 12 hours of battery life is above average for this type of mini speaker. I thought it sounded good for what it is, but critical listeners will find fault with it. It's got a pair of combo mid/sub drivers and a single tweeter, along with two passive bass radiators. It's rare to see that many drivers in a speaker this size, and it does produce a lot of volume for a mini speaker.

For the average listener, it's easy to be initially impressed by the sound. For starters, it offers decent clarity, and the bass has some kick to it. As I said, it plays loudly, which seems to be the element that most impresses people when dealing with a very compact wireless speaker.

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The buttons on top of the unit are sealed off and repel water. Sarah Tew/CNET

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