SoundCore Flare Portable Bluetooth Speaker by Anker
The SoundCore Flare, released last June from the same company that makes the SoundCore Boost, is marketed as having 360 degree sound, powerful audio and IPX7 waterproofing. The first is very true – audio comes from the walls of the cylinder rather than the base or top. You can put this speaker anywhere in room and get the same quality of sound, unlike other bluetooth speakers that have the sound coming out of just one side. The second is also true, though I haven’t had a chance to pump the volume up full blast. The speaker fills a space as large as a dance floor with minimal sound degradation.
As for that last marketing point. IPX 7 indicates protection from heavy splashing and rain. To test this out, I poured a glass of water over it while it was playing. Playback continued uninterrupted and, other than being wet and taking a long time to dry, it worked well. According to the IPX 7 designation, it should also survive short, shallow dips in water (less than 30 minutes). I have yet to test this one out. All in all, this waterproofing means you can take this bad boy outside in the rain, to the poolside, to the beach… really anywhere without having to worry about the water damaging your speaker.
On to the appearance – I like the look of the SoundCore Flare. It’s compact, with a bit of heft. I currently drive a vehicle without bluetooth capabilities, so I put the Flare in my cup holder and use it to listen to my music while I drive. It’s surprising how well it works for the car.
The fabric on the outside has an almost closely knitted feel and gives it a nice appearance that fits with most tech-loving modern but simple decors. The LED light show on the bottom of the unit adds a bit of funky to the experience. They’ve also designed an app specifically for the Flare. The app lets you customize the light show (speed, style, colour) and play around with EQ so that the sound is exactly what you want to hear.
Battery life is exceptional. I’ve used it all day (for at least 12 hours) without it dying on me.