Review: Ultimate Ears' Newly Announced BOOM 3 and MEGABOOM 3 Speakers Are Its Best Yet

Discussion in 'Guides, How Tos and Reviews' started by MacRumors, Aug 30, 2018.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    #1
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    Popular speaker company Ultimate Ears today announced the launch of the two newest speakers in its product lineup, the BOOM 3 and the MEGABOOM 3. Like all Ultimate Ears speakers, the BOOM 3 and MEGABOOM 3 are portable, waterproof speakers that can be used in a variety of conditions and are perfect for the pool or the beach.

    Compared to previous-generation speakers, the BOOM 3 and MEGABOOM 3 use new two-toned high-performance fabric that's ultra tough and was originally designed for purposes like motorcycle jackets and fire equipment.

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    The speakers also include a new Magic Button at the top of the enclosure for easier access to music controls, while MEGABOOM 3 comes equipped with deeper bass thanks to new passive radiators.

    Design

    We were able to check out the new MEGABOOM 3 ahead of its debut, and we were impressed with its fresh design and the new controls that Logitech has implemented. The new two-tone fabric looks fantastic, and the overall design of the speaker is much sleeker because the rubber strap that's normally at the front has been relocated to the back. This also gives more surface area for the sound, for better 360 degree audio.

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    We checked out the red version of the speaker, which is vibrant and eye catching, but it also comes in black, blue, and purple. Apple will also be selling two exclusive BOOM 3 and MEGABOOM 3 colors: cloud, a light blue, and denim, a darker blue shade. It's worth noting that the new fabric the speaker is made from adds better resistance to dust, increasing its water resistance and ingress rating to IP67.

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    MEGABOOM 3 and BOOM 3 will hold up to liquids and can be used at the beach, at the pool, in the rain, and in other similar conditions. This year, the speakers float, so you can stick them right in the pool to listen to music while you swim. Ultimate Ears does water resistance right and we've never seen issues with the speakers in wet conditions.

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    The BOOM 3 is the smaller of the two speakers and is more portable, while the MEGABOOM 3 is larger with louder sound and more bass, making it ideal for use outdoors. Sound wise, the MEGABOOM 3 is loud enough that at max volumes it's more than loud enough to be heard throughout multiple rooms or across much of a pool or beach area.

    With the new look, the "+" and "-" buttons blend right into the fabric of the speaker for a more subtle design, and, most importantly, the update relocates the micro-USB to the back of the device instead of the bottom so it's now possible to charge while the speaker is upright and in use.

    Both the MEGABOOM 3 and BOOM 3 are compatible with the $40 Power Up charging dock that Ultimate Ears launched last year, which lets you charge the speaker inductively so you don't need to fuss with a cable and the micro-USB port.

    The MEGABOOM 3 and BOOM 3 have built-in batteries. The BOOM 3 battery can last for up to 15 hours before needing to be recharged, while the MEGABOOM 3 battery can last for 20 hours.

    Performance and App

    While the MEGABOOM 3 and BOOM 3 look great, it's the addition of the Magic Button that boosts their utility above and beyond previous-generation Ultimate Ears speakers.

    Paired with the new Ultimate Ears BOOM app, the Magic Button allows the MEGABOOM 3 and BOOM 3 to work with playlists for the first time. From Apple Music, you can import up to four playlists. You can include self-created playlists or those that Apple creates, such as New Music Mix and Chill Mix.

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    Playlists can be played automatically using the Magic Button. A long press will activate your Playlists, while a second long press will skip to the next playlist. This is useful if you have different playlists you want to access at a party or while at the beach or in the pool but don't have your iPhone handy.

    The Magic Button also offers full controls for other purposes. Pressing it turns the speaker on, while a second press will pause. A double press will skip to the next song.

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    You can set up four playlists using the BOOM app, which is required to use the playlist feature. On iOS devices, it works with Apple Music and pulls content from your music library, recommendations from Apple, and preset playlists you've created. The playlists feature is limited to Apple Music, so it unfortunately won't work with Spotify at this time.

    On Android, though, it does work with Deezer Premium, and Ultimate Ears says that additional music services will be added in the future.

    You can, however, still play music from Spotify or any other music service from the iPhone over the Bluetooth connection to the speaker. The BOOM app also offers full music controls and the ability to turn the speaker on and off, plus it offers an equalizer for adjusting bass, mid, and treble to preferred levels.

    The app also provides access to key features Ultimate Ears speakers are known for like PartyUp for linking up to 150 speakers together and Block Party for allowing multiple people to stream content to the MEGABOOM 3 or BOOM 3.

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    Ultimate Ears says that both the MEGABOOM 3 and BOOM 3 have been upgraded with enhanced Bluetooth range up to 150 feet, and that longer range support was evident in our testing compared to previous-generation Ultimate Ears speakers.

    Ultimate Ears' speakers always sound great, and while no improvements have been made to the sound quality of the BOOM 3, the MEGABOOM 3 has noticeably deeper bass through the inclusion of new passive radiators.

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    We weren't able to test the BOOM 3's sound, but the MEGABOOM 3 sounds even better than previous-generation Ultimate Ears speakers.

    How to Buy

    The new MEGABOOM 3 and BOOM 3 will be available for purchase starting in September in the United States and select countries in Europe and Asia.

    The BOOM 3 is priced at $149.99, and the MEGABOOM 3 is priced at $199.99. As mentioned earlier, Apple will be selling exclusive versions of the two speakers in two different shades of blue.

    Note: Ultimate Ears provided MacRumors with MEGABOOM 3 for the purpose of this review. No other compensation was received.

    Article Link: Review: Ultimate Ears' Newly Announced BOOM 3 and MEGABOOM 3 Speakers Are Its Best Yet
     
  2. PhiLLoW macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 31, 2014
    #2
    Love my Boom 2 but they definitely have to fix their Boom-App. Pairing of two speakers and ‚Party-up‘ doesn‘t work all the time which is pretty annoying.
     
  3. CarlJ macrumors 68030

    CarlJ

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2004
    Location:
    San Diego, CA, USA
    #3
    This is quite a long article, and... it's a review, but it doesn't say it's a review until literally the second to last sentence (and the last sentence is just a link to the article).

    This seems a little weird. It merges objective reporting on a product announcement with an opinion piece describing how much the author likes (or doesn't like) the speakers.

    I think it would reflect better on MacRumors to either declare up front that it is both a product announcement and a review, or post an announcement and a review separately.
     
  4. HacKage macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 14, 2010
    #4
    This isn't an issue. I have the UE Boom 1 with the charging port on the bottom. The solution: Turn it upside down. The speaker still works exactly as expected, you just don't have immediate access to the power button.
     
  5. Casaron macrumors newbie

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    Jun 3, 2014
  6. Nozuka macrumors 68020

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    Jul 3, 2012
  7. Smartass macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2012
    #7
    How do you mean it works with playlists? You can already do that, just open the Apple music app, open the desired playlist, and click play? Or am i missing something herE?

    Otherwise great speakers(currently have 3 booms) and i'll be sure to snatch one Megaboom 2, since it's gotten really cheap on amazon :)

    edit: That's a lot of booms in one post.
     
  8. riber79 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2012
    Location:
    Denmark
    #8
    “MEGABOOM 3 Christian edition” (it kind of looks like a science fiction sarcophagus) ;)
     
  9. Taipan macrumors 6502

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    Jun 23, 2003
  10. HacKage macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 14, 2010
    #10
    Because no matter how much we kid ourselves on, USB-C is still years away from mainstream adoption. Why does a bluetooth speaker need USB-C? There is absolutely no benefit to UE/Logitech to put in a more expensive, high speed interface for charging and the minute possibility of an end user performing a software update through cable.

    You know what would make manufacturers release only USB-C interfaces on their whole product range? If Apple dropped the lightning connector on their mobile devices and went full USB-C. The moment that happens, every single portable electronics company will drop micro USB and goto USB-C. As long as there is fragmentation in the market place, manufacturers like Logitech will look for the highest level of compatibility, and micro USB offers that.
     
  11. MrGimper macrumors 603

    MrGimper

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    Sep 22, 2012
    Location:
    Andover, UK
    #11
    I managed to pick up the Boom 2 Panther Limited Edition Black/Yellow one for my Son's birthday for £75 here in the UK a few weeks back. A fantastic little device TBH, v impressed.
     
  12. frou macrumors 6502

    frou

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    Mar 14, 2009
  13. iPhysicist macrumors 65816

    iPhysicist

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    Dresden
    #13
    ...or like a graveyard candle.
     
  14. FFR macrumors 68040

    FFR

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2007
    Location:
    London
    #14
    I really want one, they are great for the beach.
    But won’t buy any devices with a micro USB port, not in 2017 and definitely not in 2018.

    Should have been lightning or usc c.
     
  15. Japega macrumors newbie

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    Aug 10, 2011
    #15
    I was thinking the same thing!
     
  16. Aston441 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2014
    #16

    They never will. Logitech has been abandoning customers and covering up past mistakes since the beginning.
     
  17. RightMACatU macrumors 65816

    RightMACatU

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    Jul 12, 2012
    Location:
    192.168.1.1
    #17
    With evvvvery new release we get the same comments on how much it looks like a cross, belongs in a church, etc... God I'm tired of those.

    See what I did there? :p
     
  18. H3LL5P4WN macrumors 68000

    H3LL5P4WN

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2010
    Location:
    Pittsburgh PA
    #18
    Especially when you turn it upside down.
    --- Post Merged, Aug 30, 2018 ---
    You win the internet for that comment. I DooM Marine grunt in approval.
     
  19. grobik macrumors member

    grobik

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    Mar 4, 2006
    #19
    I'd really like to hear what 150 of those things playing at the same time sound like.
     
  20. Scooz macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2012
    #20
    In a church!

    Like hell, probably.
     
  21. CentralOffice macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2010
    #21
    Best news is that the Megaboom is now much more reasonably priced at 199 -- the OG model retailed at $300 which was a hard pass.
     
  22. robjmurphy macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2004
    Location:
    East Anglia, UK
    #22
    Wish they'd get PartyUp sorted for the Blast series before releasing new, better, cheaper models with the best feature of the Blast migrated down the chain! & no it's not Alexa ;) The Power Up charging swayed me over the PartyUp feature as we were assured it would arrive for Blast series in the not too distant... That was 6 months ago!
     
  23. peelage macrumors newbie

    peelage

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    Location:
    Minneapolis
    #23
    Sooooo.. No bluetoofth 5.0?!?! What gives?
     
  24. Mskys macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2018
    #24
    Agreed, seems to be blurry lines between product endorsements (ads), product announcements and product reviews. Would be better if it was cleared up at the top of any product articles what exactly is going on.
     
  25. skys15 macrumors member

    skys15

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    Aug 23, 2017

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