Review: BlueAnt’s X3 Speaker Puts The Boom Back In Boombox
Summer and (COVID-safe) Christmas parties are just around the corner and Aussies are on the lookout for the ultimate speakers to blast music while sitting by the pool or clinking champagne glasses on the patio.
There are countless portable Bluetooth speakers available which vary in size, price and sound quality.
But Aussie-made audio company BlueAnt has emerged as a fierce competitor in this saturated market with its nifty new portable Bluetooth speaker, the BlueAnt X3.
At AU$239, the X3 has all the features and performance which would make it a fantastic Christmas present and a worthwhile addition to your next party.
The X3 is a bit bigger than its predecessor, the slimline X2, but is still quite small and stylish with incredible sound technology packed inside.
It only comes in black – but that’s not to say BlueAnt won’t bring it out in red and blue like the X0, X1 and X2.
At 1.1kg, it’s not the lightest boombox on the market and probably isn’t the best device to carry in your backpack while on a long hiking expedition or camping trip. But it’s small enough that it can be easily transported from place to place without it sacrificing the stunning sound.
BlueAnt brought out the X3 in time for summer, so it would be a great addition to a pool party or beach day – compact enough so you can stow it in a beach bag but loud enough that you can still hear the music while outdoors.
The design itself is quite basic with a single play button and volume up/down on either side on the top. I found the buttons aren’t 100% touch sensitive and require you press down a little hard to get the desired function.
Each end of the X3 has a mini subwoofer and the AUX/USB-C/charging port are all neatly tucked away under a flap.
The X3 also has two little feet which allow it to sit on a surface easily.
Bluetooth connectivity was like a dream – the iconic sound of a didgeridoo plays when you switch it on and it was easily paired to my android phone.
I tested out the sound with a range of songs while it sat in my apartment. Once switched on, the X3 is at the default 25% volume but when you crank it up to 100%, the sound is unbelievable.
The sound was crisp, rich and unfettered by vibrations or spluttering. I slowly made my way up from basic instrumental music like Fleetwood Mac to bass-heavy dubstep and the sound quality was not compromised.
It was hard to believe that music was coming from such a small little boombox. And boom it did – the bass boost button is an awesome edition especially for outdoor use and there was little distortion or static.
The music really filled the room and I’d imagine it would be an incredible substitute for an actual DJ and your next COVID-safe gathering.
Specs-wise, the X3 is shipped with powerful 30-watt Bluetooth® Speakers with 2 x 57mm Drivers and 2 x passive Radiators.
A full charge will give the speaker 15 hours of play time at 50% volume, and at 100% the X3 will give you 4-5 hours of continuous sound.
But if you do utilise the bass boost the battery will be zapped a little quicker.
The X3 also has a fun feature which allows you to pair two of the speakers together in ‘dual mode’ for optimal sound and volume.
This mode only works with two X3 boomboxes and I was able to test it out. The sound was thunderous and there was virtually no lag between the two devices. This would work great if two people brought the same BlueAnt speaker to a party but not really necessary for outdoor use when the sound is already quite impressive.
It seems every technology product on the market is embracing the Artificial Intelligence (AI) wave, including boomboxes, and the X3 is no exception.
When connected to your smartphone’s Bluetooth, the X3 is compatible with Siri or Google. All you need to do is press the play button and, voila, you have a networked speaker on your hands too.
It’s a nice little plus to be able to say “Hey Google, play Dreams by Fleetwood Mac!” on a boombox with such rich sound. But beware, like with a phone, Google and Siri are hard to voice activate when in loud environments.
The X3 also takes calls on loudspeaker if your smartphone is connected to the BlueTooth. The person on the other end of the line is quite clear and easy to hear but there was a slight delay in playback.
If you’re worried about losing phone battery while out and about, the portable X3 also has a USB port to charge your smartphone. This will drain the speaker’s battery faster, though.
And of course, the X3 has an IP67 rating which means a few splashes and pesky sand won’t ruin the speaker. Perfect for a summer pool party or for bringing it down to the beach.
A little heavy
Buttons not very touch sensitive