I’ve been a huge fan of Ultimate Ears speakers and have always impressed with both sound and aesthetics. In fact, the ROLL 2, BOOM 2 and MEGABOOM serve as our poolside speakers all summer long. (Check out all the reviews!) Now the company has announced the BLAST and MEGABLAST. They look amazing and have Amazon Alexa hands-free voice control baked in.
The Ultimate Ears BLAST and Ultimate Ears MEGABLAST are “portable, wireless, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth speakers with immersive 360-degree sound and hands-free voice-control, for at home and on-the-go.”
Also, they are both designed to work with the new Ultimate Ears POWER UP charging dock which makes charging and grabbing the BLAST and MEGABLAST as easy as easy can be. As UE says, “With POWER UP, you can say goodbye to messy wires and keep the music playing while charging.”
I love the UE speakers and have been impressed by their evolution over time. At one point, UE began making them waterproof. A separate update turned them into amazing-sounding alarm clocks. None of this comes close to the update that arrives with these two new offerings. Previously the speakers could connect to music via Bluetooth or a 3.5mm cable.
With the BLAST and MEGABLAST, however, UE has added Wi-Fi and Amazon Alexa Handsfree control for both streaming from your favorite cloud-based serve and controlling your smart home the way you would with the Amazon Alexa. That means all of the 25,000 skills available on the Amazon Echo are available with UE’s new speakers as well. And because these speakers are designed to go with you, by connecting to WiFi or by using your phone’s hotspot, you can get Alexa pretty much anywhere you go. As the company explains:
The music never stops: When connected to Wi-Fi, you can take calls on your phone while the music continues to play uninterrupted on the speakers. And with hands-free voice control, anyone can be the DJ. BLAST and MEGABLAST also give you the ability to stream music from the cloud, and a bigger range to roam and dance with a range of 330 feet on Wi-Fi. Both speakers have a Bluetooth range of 150 feet.
That, however, is just the beginning.
The speakers are also waterproof and dustproof thanks to an IP67 rating.
The BLAST gets up to 12 hours of playback per charge, and the MEGABLAST gets an amazing 16 hours per charge. UE also claims the speakers will get “Smarter over time: Featuring a new Ultimate Ears app, BLAST and MEGABLAST get smarter and better over time.” And while we’ve all heard this claim before from far too many companies that never delivered on their promise, I can vouch for the fact that Ultimate Ears actually DOES send updates! Finally, considering how good previous speakers sound, I have no doubt the BLAST and MEGABLAST will sound awesome. They also happen to be the company’s loudest and most powerful speakers to date.
As Ultimate Ears’ loudest, most powerful and best sounding speaker to date, MEGABLAST is meticulously engineered from the ground up with custom drivers that produce a full and crisp sound. The result is a speaker with more powerful mid-range, deeper bass, vocals and instruments that are produced clearer than ever before in our highly portable, battery-powered speakers. With a maximum sound pressure level of 93 dBC, MEGABLAST is the loudest speaker from Ultimate Ears and is 40 percent louder than Ultimate Ears MEGABOOM.
The MEGABOOM is a powerful speaker that has consistently impressed me. The fact that the MEGABOOM is 40 percent louder tells me this is going to be a speaker that will knock your socks off and do so while still sounding amazing.
As Charlotte Johs, general manager of Ultimate Ears notes,
With BLAST and MEGABLAST, we brought together everything that our fans loved about our Bluetooth speakers — amazing sound quality, waterproof, ready-for-anything design — and upped the ante with Wi-Fi and far-field voice recognition with Amazon Alexa. And with a battery life of up to 12 hours for BLAST and 16 hours for MEGABLAST, you can take these portable speakers everywhere and enjoy great sound all day.
Amazon seems pretty stoked by the new Ultimate Ears speakers. Steve Rabuchin, vice president of Amazon Alexa notes,
Alexa should go everywhere you want to go, and the BLAST and MEGABLAST speakers make that even easier. We’re excited that these devices will bring great-sounding music, durability, portability and hands-free access to Alexa to more customers, even outside of their homes.
Both companies are so excited by this partnership that any? ??BLAST? ?and/or? ?MEGABLAST? ??purchased through? ?January? ?23,? ?2018? ?will come? ?with? ?a? ?three-month? ?subscription? ?to? ?Amazon? ?Music? ?Unlimited.? ?Of course, this? ?promotion? ?is? ?only? ?available? ?to? ?new? ?subscribers? ?of Amazon? ?Music? ?Unlimited.
- WI-FI CONNECTIVITY: Ultimate Ears MEGABLAST brings Wi-Fi to the portable speaker party and connects directly to the cloud. Enjoy fast, stable streaming, a big range to roam and the ability to take calls without stopping the music and killing the vibe. Use Alexa with these music services.
- BLUETOOTH TOO: MEGABLAST is also Bluetooth-enabled, so when you venture off into the wilds away from Wi-Fi, you can keep enjoying music from your smartphone or other Bluetooth device. With MEGABLAST, the party never stops. Stream from your favorite music services.
- SMARTER OVER TIME: MEGABLAST uses over-the-air software updates and gets better all the time. Just fire-up the Ultimate Ears app to get the latest updates and enjoy the ultimate wireless music experience.
The BLAST and MEGABLAST will be available in Graphite (Black), Blizzard (White), Merlot (Red) and Blue Steel. The BLAST will have an MSRP of $229.99, MEGABLAST will have an MSRP of $299.99 and the POWER UP charging base will retail for $39. I’m hoping to have a full review soon. In the meantime, you can learn more here.