We've examined every Bluetooth speaker on the market, but we thought it would be wise to narrow our focus here to just two excellent, small, outdoorsy speaker offers from Logitech's UE: the Wonderboom and the Roll 2.
We stand by our overall Bluetooth speaker meta-review's recommendation of the UE Boom 2 as the best combination of durability and great sound in a conveniently small package. And we also have other recommendations for those looking to spend a bit less (hello, Logitech X300!).
But if you're looking for the exact combination of cheap and waterproof — while sacrificing as little as possible on sound quality, of course — the UE Wonderboom and UE Roll 2 are the top choices out there. Here's a look at how they compare.
Side-by-Side Comparison: UE Boom 2 vs. UE MegaBoom
Later on we'll give the details of how reviewers feel about these speakers, but here's the overview.
• Chunky cylinder cuteness
• Just under a pound
• Sounds pretty good, more emphasis on bass
• Max output: 86 dBC
• If you buy two, pair them via Bluetooth for double sound
• Fully waterproof and dustproof: Rated IP67
• Floats, but not meant to be used in water
• Drivers: Two 1.58" (40mm) active drivers and two 1.8" x 2.6" (46.1 mm x 65.2 mm) passive radiators
• 10-hour battery
• No smartphone app
• Warranty: 2 years
• Flying saucer cuteness
• About 20% lighter
• More refined, even sound across all frequencies
• Max output: 85 dBC
• If you buy two, pair them via the UE Roll app for double sound
• Fully waterproof: Rated IPX7
• Comes with pool floattie, designed to play music while floating
• Drivers: One 2” (51mm) driver and two ¾” (19mm) tweeters.
• 9-hour battery
• UE Roll app has equalizer, alarm
• Warranty: 2 years
How the UE Roll 2 and UE Wonderboom Are Alike: Overall Qualities
These are both standout speakers in terms of excellent sound in a small package, and both are fully waterproof with excellent durability and two-year warranties. They're both at or near the top of critics' lists. Most users are quite satisfied with either one.
Sound Differences of the UE Roll 2 and UE Wonderboom
The UE Roll 2 is generally the darling of many tech sites, audiophiles, and consumer testing organizations. It tends to come out at or near the top when compared to the other similarly priced and sized Bluetooth speakers. It is noted for having an even, "natural" mix, a "solid" low end, and "little details" that "sizzle".
The UE Wonderboom is universally described by critics as hitting a bit heavier on the bass end. They also enjoy its 360-degree soundscape, commenting that it truly does manage to throw out quality audio in every direction, and thus is great to place in the middle of a party. It can go just a bit louder.
Pairing Two Units
If you were curious, no, you cannot resolve your indecision by buying both a UE Roll 2 and a UE Wonderboom and pairing them together.
You can, however, expand the sound space and double up the volume by pairing two UE Wonderbooms together via Bluetooth.
The UE Roll 2 is even better in this regard; you can buy two of them and pair them with a dedicated app (for Android/Apple) that allows you to create a stereo soundscape and to adjust equalizer settings.
Durability and Waterproofing
Both of these speakers stand out for their durability and have an IP rating of 7 for waterproofing, which means that they could take being submerged in up to a meter of water for up to 30 minutes.
The Wonderboom floats and the UE Roll 2 comes with a plastic floatie. But if you're looking for something to have playing music while actually floating in the pool, go for the UE Roll 2 as it is intended for this use; the Wonderboom is better off poolside.
The Wonderboom is also dustproof, which is designated with an IP67 rating (these ratings are specific, legally binding promises). According to UE's marketing, it is also supposed to withstand drops quite well, and the reviewers that put this to the test with waist-high drops haven't yet managed to damage their speakers. So you can expect the Wonderboom to be more durable than the UE Roll 2 and to better survive adventures in the woods, at outdoor festivals, etc.
This UE Roll 2 has gone down in price since it was first released and we expect the UE Wonderboom to eventually do the same. As of this writing they're close, but the Wonderboom is a bit more costly. If purchasing on Amazon, click around to check the prices for different colors, as they can sometimes vary quite a bit and you may be able to get a good deal if you're flexible about color choice.
Tech Specifications of the UE Wonderboom and UE Roll 2 Side-by-Side
Here we've also thrown in our overall favorite, the UE Boom 2, just for comparison.
|Speaker||Weight (oz.)||Length (in.)||Width (in.)||Height (in.)||Waterproof?||Pricing|
|UE Roll 2||11.64||5.3||5.3||1.6||Yes (IPX7)|
|UE Wonderboom||15.0||4.0||3.7||3.7||Yes (IP67)|
|UE Boom 2||19.2||2.5||2.5||7||Yes (IPX7)|
These are both great speakers and the differences are small. If you're at all like most audio critics, you'll probably prefer the more even and detailed sound of the UE Roll 2. And if you're planning on using it in a pool, that's definitely the one to get.
The UE Wonderboom sounds almost as good, has a bit more emphasis on the bass, and goes just a bit louder. You know if that fits your taste. The Wonderboom is also a better choice for those who need a speaker for camping or otherwise expect it to suffer a bit of abuse.