Review: Scosche boomBOTTLE H2O Bluetooth Wireless Speaker
After finding success with its original boomBOTTLE, Scosche decided to expand the family with two new products bearing the name. One of them is boomBOTTLE H2O ($100). The design is highly similar to that of the original speaker, although it's about half the height. Available in gray, blue, or yellow, the bottle-design still fits into a cup holder, and can stream music from up to 33 feet away. Because it's IP67 waterproof-rated, boomBOTTLE H2O is made to be used anywhere, and a carabiner clip is included to make travel more convenient. A charging cable is also packed in with the speaker.
Standing 4.5” tall, this version of the speaker has the same diameter as its predecessor at 2.8”. The rubbery exterior is textured, with decorative ridges and valleys, and capped at either end by a cap, either black or gray. It has the same button array—volume up, down, and power—as well as the same indicator light. Noticeably missing is the microphone, as boomBOTTLE H2O doesn’t have speakerphone functionality. A waterproof flap on the back houses charging and aux ports. Here, Scosche has added a fabric pull tab to make it easier to gain access, but you still have to actively pull to get it open. A slightly higher 11 hour battery life is promised with this one.
Instead of dual 40mm speakers that radiate from openings around the circumference of the tube’s top and bottom, the smaller boomBOTTLE has a single, top-firing 50mm speaker and a passive subwoofer. The audio quality is expectedly diminished, although not bad. Most notably, the highs aren’t as rich as on the original boomBOTTLE, and overall, music has less body to it, as the bass isn’t as strong either. These compromises make sense when considering there’s less speaker hardware to produce the sound. boomBOTTLE H2O doesn’t get quite as loud at its top level, but does exhibit less distortion when it’s there.
With a current price difference of $40 between the two speakers, we find the two units to be on par in terms of value for their respective prices; boomBOTTLE H2O earns the same strong general recommendation as its predecessor. At a lower price, you lose some audio quality, but gain the ability to immerse the speaker in water. For travel or by the pool, this may be a valuable attribute. And in picking either of the two, you’ll be getting Scosche’s cool design, something that still holds up more than a year after we first saw it.