Best portable mini Bluetooth speakers

The market for Bluetooth speakers has exploded in the past few years, and with good reason: quality has increased and prices have dropped. Every model can stream music from nearly any smartphone or tablet, many of them double as speakerphones, too.

We at CNET have been reviewing them at a steady clip, and we've rounded up more than two dozen of our favorite models, focusing on small and lightweight units that are best suited to travel. Some of the "older" models have been discontinued but are perfectly fine and continue to be offered for sale at great prices, so we're keeping them in the round up until they completely disappear from the market.

Photo by: Sarah Tew/CNET

UE Boom 2

The UE Boom 2 originally listed for $200 (£179, AU$180), but has now come down in price. It delivers very big sound and is a great choice for outdoor use. This updated version looks very similar to the original, but has improved sound and is fully waterproof. It costs around $150 online.

See pricing on Amazon for UE Boom 2.

Photo by: Sarah Tew/CNET

Bose SoundLink Color II

Bose's most compact and affordable Bluetooth speaker has improved sound and a water-resistant design.

See pricing for Bose SoundLink Color II on Amazon.

Photo by: Sarah Tew/CNET

JBL Charge 2 Plus

The Charge 3 is JBL's newest Charge (see next slide) but this 2015 is arguably the better deal -- and we think it sounds a little better. You can now find it discounted online for as low as $80 while the Charge 3 costs about $50 more.

See pricing on Amazon for JBL Charge 2+.

Photo by: Sarah Tew/CNET

JBL Charge 3

We like the sound of the JBL Charge 2 Plus a little better, but the fully waterproof Charge 3 has come down in price and is now a better value.

See pricing for JBL Charge 3 on Amazon.

Photo by: Sarah Tew/CNET

Bose SoundLink Mini II

With excellent build quality and impressive sound quality for its size, the Bose SoundLink Mini II is near the top of the mini Bluetooth speaker pack, and well worth its price ($200 USD, £170, AU$250). This second-generation version features a built-in speakerphone, longer battery life and USB charging.

See pricing for Bose SoundLink Mini II on Amazon.

Photo by: Sarah Tew/CNET

JBL Pulse 2

A lot of these small Bluetooth speakers sound fairly similar, but the JBL Pulse 2 manages to distinguish itself with a built-in light show that's fairly mesmerizing. It lists for $200, £170 or AU$300, but can be had for less online.

See pricing for JBL Pulse 2 on Amazon.

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B&O Play BeoPlay A1

Credit B&O Play for creating a Bluetooth speaker that doesn't look like anything out there already. The new dome-shaped Beoplay A1 is not only the smallest wireless speaker from the Danish company, but also the most affordable at $249, £199 in the UK and AU$379 in Australia. It sounds impressive for its small size and has a high-quality speakerphone.

See pricing for BeoPlay A1 on Amazon.

Photo by: Sarah Tew/CNET

UE Roll 2

We were fans of UE's original Roll Bluetooth speaker, a compact, waterproof wireless speaker with a unique design that sounded very good for its size and has decent battery life. The UE Roll 2, which retails for $100 USD (£80, AU$95), but sometimes goes on sale, offers improved range and plays louder. It's one of our favorite mini Bluetooth speakers.

See pricing for UE Roll 2 on Amazon.

Photo by: Sarah Tew/CNET

JBL Flip 3

The JBL Flip 3 is the newer -- and improved -- version of JBL's original Flip and Flip 2. It's one of the top wireless speakers out there at $100 (or £110, AU$168). A 2015 model, you can now find it online closer to $80.

See pricing for JBL Flip 3 on Amazon.

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Klipsch Groove

Klipsch's Groove mini Bluetooth speaker is well designed and packs a punch. It's expensive at its list price of $150, but you can find it for a bit less online.

See pricing on Amazon for Klipsch Groove.

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Beats Pill+

The Beats Pill+, which charges via Apple's Lightning cable, has a lot to like about it if you can overlook its inflated list price: $229, £189, and AU$267. But it is being discounted online to around $170 (£170), which helps.

See pricing for Beats Pill+ on Amazon.

Photo by: David Carnoy/CNET

Logitech X300

Logitech's X300, which can be stood up vertically or sat down horizontally (as pictured), is a solid deal at $70 (£60, AU$80), sounding as good or better than many competing speakers in the $100 price range. Since it's being phased out, you can now find it for closer to $50 online.

See pricing for for Logitech X300 on Amazon.

Photo by: Sarah Tew/CNET

Divoom Voombox Travel 3

Divoom's Voombox Travel 3 is a rugged doughnut-size speaker that plays very loud for its size and retails for as low as $20. (the original Travel sells for as low as £20 in the UK, not available in Australia). While it distorts at times, it's still one of the stronger speakers in its size class.

See pricing for Divoom Voombox Travel 3 on Amazon.

Photo by: Sarah Tew/CNET

JBL Clip 2

JBL Clip 2, the successor to the popular Clip and Clip+, is a waterproof micro Bluetooth speaker with a handy tuck-away cord you can plug into your audio source if need be. It costs a little more than $50 online. The Clip 2 is available in the UK for £35 and AU$60 in Australia.

See pricing for JBL Clip 2 at Amazon.

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Jawbone Mini Jambox

The pioneer in mini Bluetooth speakers has shrunken the original Jambox down while improving the sound. Jawbone has discontinued it but you can now find it online for as low as $75, £70 or AU$99.

See pricing for Jambox Mini on Amazon.

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Deck by Sol Republic and Motorola

The Deck was originally overpriced -- $200, £150 or AU$236 -- but it's now available for as low as $50 online, making it a pretty nice deal in the US at least.

See pricing for Deck on Amazon.

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AmazonBasics BTV1

AmazonBasics BTV1 Bluetooth speaker is a decent value at $40. Also available in blue, red and white.

See pricing for BTV1 on Amazon.

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Logitech X100

Although it's technically been discontinued, you can still find Logitech's X100 for sale at a bargain price. It's one of the better micro wireless speakers out there, and while its sound is decent for its class, ultimately you'd probably want to pick it over its competitors because you like its design (I do), particularly now that it only costs around $20 online (or £20).

See pricing for Logitech X100 on Amazon.

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Sol Republic Punk

The Sol Republic Punk plays a little louder than some speakers its size and has come down from its list price of $60 to less than $40 online (depending on the color). And $20 for a refurbished model.

See pricing for Sol Republic Punk on Amazon.

Photo by: Sol Republic

Philips SoundShooter Wireless

People often refer to the Philips SoundShooter Wireless as "the grenade speaker." It started out at $50 or £33, but now that it's been discontinued, it can be had for less than $20 online.

See pricing for Philips SoundShooter Wireless on Amazon.

Photo by: Sarah Tew/CNET

Divoom Voombox Outdoor 2

We reviewed Divoom's original Voombox Outdoor and thought it was pretty good for $100. Now the Voombox Outdoor 2 sells for $60 (£40) online and plays very loud for its small size, though it can distort at higher volumes.

See pricing for Voombox Outdoor 2 on Amazon.

Photo by: Sarah Tew/CNET

Scosche BoomBottle H2O

Scosche's $100 (£100, not available in Australia) BoomBottle H2O is a sporty little canister-style speaker that's waterproof and bike-friendly. It's been out a while and can be now had for significantly less online (I've seen the black version for as low as $50).

See pricing for Scosche BoomBottle H2O on Amazon.

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Braven BRV-1

We thought the water-resistant Braven BRV-1 was overpriced at its $180 list price, but now that it's come down to less than $100 (£120 in the UK, AU$195 in Australia), it's a lot more attractive.

See pricing for Braven Braven BRV-1 on Amazon.

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Boom Swimmer

Polk Audio's Boom Swimmer is a small waterproof wireless speaker that has a bendable tail that allows you to hook the speaker onto anything you want. When it was first released it listed for $60 (£50, AU$79), but can now be had for less than half that online.

It also comes with a suction cup, so you can attach it to the wall -- or glass -- in your shower. It offers better sound than its small size would indicate, but it gets on the list for its flexible, bathroom friendly design. Available in multiple color options.

See pricing for Boom Swimmer on Amazon.

Photo by: Boom

Philips BT2500

Philips also makes the larger BT3500 (it offers a little bit fuller sound), but we like the BT2500, which can be had for less than $20 or £30 online.

See pricing for Philips BT2500 on Amazon.

Read full review
Photo by: Sarah Tew/CNET

Jabra Solemate

Jabra's Solemate has treads on its base to keep it from moving around at higher volumes. The black version has been discontinued, but it's now available in other colors for around $70 online after starting out at $150, £75, and AU$174.

See pricing for Jabra Solemate on Amazon.

Photo by: Sarah Tew/CNET

Philips Shoqbox SB7200

The discontinued Philips Shoqbox SB7200 can handle short drops and is available online as little as $40 or £65 in the UK (not available in Australia).

See pricing for Philips Shoqbox SB7200 on Amazon.

Read full review
Photo by: Sarah Tew/CNET

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