What are the differences between the Boom 3 and Boom 2 speakers?

We test countless Bluetooth speakers each year and know the difference between significant and ho-hum updates from one generation to the next. So we’ve tested whether it’s worth it to upgrade to the Boom 3.

Boom 3

Latest ca-Boom

$150 at Amazon

Pros

  • Super sound
  • 15 hours between charges
  • IP67 water and dustproof rating
  • 45m wireless range
  • Customizable EQ

Cons

  • No 3.5mm jack
  • Few color choices

For most users looking for a mid-priced wireless speaker, the Boom 3 is the one to get. It offers all that you need to listen to your favorite music over a long period of time between charges, even when swimming.

Boom 2

Less expensive option

$130 at Amazon

Pros

  • Available in various color choices (including special editions)
  • Also offers 15 hours of music between charges

Cons

  • Less range (33m)
  • A little bit less durable than its successor

The Boom 2 is still a very good speaker. In fact, there’s no difference with the sound between the two models. Where it lacks is on durability and range.

No matter if you get the Boom 2 or the Boom 3, you’re going to get a solid speaker. You just have to figure out if buying the newest model is the right choice for you. Normally, the only advantage you get with an older model is a drop in price, but the price difference between these two speakers is small enough that you should still go with the Boom 3.

Breaking it down

When you compare these Ultimate Ear speakers, you’re not going to find that many differences between the two. Despite this, there are key reasons to choose the new one over the old.

Boom 3 Boom 2
Battery life 15 hours 15 hours
Water resistance IP67 IPX7
Bluetooth range 45 meters 33 meters
Frequency range 90Hz – 20kHz 90Hz – 20kHz
Color choices 4 9
Weight 608 grams 548 grams
Charges via Micro-USB and Power Up Micro-USB

For more money, you get a newer device that has more Bluetooth range, can charge with Ultimate Ears’ Power Up device and has better water resistance. Despite this, the newer device hasn’t made any advances when it comes to sound and hours of enjoyment between charges. Both the Boom 3 and Boom 2 offer 15 hours of service between charges and both also have the same frequency range.

There’s no doubt about it, the Boom 3 is newer than the Boom 2. As such, it offers a few new features over its predecessor. With that being said, this is an incremental update at best, which is something to consider when the price is the most important factor. If you want to spend a little less on your Bluetooth speaker and don’t care about the range or other small features, it might be worth it to get the Boom 2. You’ll be getting similar sound either way.

Another small factor that might influence your purchase: Do you like out-of-the-ordinary colors or styles? Ultimate Ears often reveals special editions for all of its speaker lineups, so a specific one might catch your eye. If you’re eying the Boom 3 but don’t like the choices, sit tight. More colors are probably coming soon.

Boom 3

Our pick

$150 at Amazon

It’s the best Boom to date

The evolution continues. After making broad changes between the Boom and Boom 2, Ultimate Ears slowed down making advances when it designed the Boom 3. It’s still the best Boom to date, however.

Boom 2

Budget choice

A good, but not the best choice

$130 at Amazon

With the Boom 2, you get the Ultimate Ears wireless speaker experience for a little bit less. Buy one to save cash.

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