BOSE SOUNDLINK III
Good sound. Fantastic bass for a small unit. Expensive. No additional features beyond playing music.
We reviewed the Bose Soundlink Mini back in November last year and found it lacking, so we decided to go for its updated big brother, the Soundlink III for this shootout. At close to five hundred dollars, it is easily the most expensive set of speakers in this line up, but at the same time has the smallest feature set. Bose has stubbornly decided to leave out modern day conveniences like NFC pairing, USB charging capabilities, speaker-tospeaker capability, and even an inbuilt microphone.
The Soundlink III packs four neodymium transducers and X dual-opposing passive radiators combined with a new digital signal processing algorithm and improved electronics. Unlike the Nyne TT, the Soundlink III easily fills a medium to large sized room, while its larger battery also ensuring it has enough juice to last up to 14 hours on a single charge.
Design-wise, the Soundlink III eschews flash for a simple, clean design. Contrasting just two tones of grey, and keeping with a simple metal finish. Like the Mini, you can opt to jazz
it up with a range of optional colored covers. The Soundlink III is almost as large as the Nyne TT, with a slim profile that makes for easy packing. However, all those drivers and larger battery makes it the heaviest speaker here at 1.37kg.
The Soundlink III was the loudest speaker in the group, edging out even the Creative Sound Blaster Roar (even with its Roar function enabled), and we found that the speaker held itself together impressively even at high volume levels, with only a slight bit of distortion in the lower registers.
Sail on Soothsayer by Buckethead played with robust, rumbling bass, and the Soundlink III handled the guitar solo with ease. Likewise, the Eagles’ Hotel California was an enjoyable experience, with the Soundlink rendering guitar and voices with nice separation. Bass has a degree of decay with these speakers, and we quite enjoyed the way trebles and mids are handled – maybe slightly warm to be accurate, but very much enjoyable nonetheless.