New Bee Bluetooth Pocket Speaker Review
What I Like:
- Small design, just over 4 inches in length and less than an inch in depth
- Shockingly good audio, with one driver dedicated to high frequencies and one dedicated to bass
- Can achieve loud volumes with little distortion
- “New Bee” branding is easily removable
- Buttons feel great and the build is sturdy
- Strong and steady Bluetooth connectivity
What I Don’t Like:
- Rubber cover is easily removable, making the “waterproofing” questionable – a little spot of glue fixed this
Summary: I’ve been on the hunt for the best pocket speaker for a while now so when this one came up in my review queue I jumped on the opportunity right away. There is one thing to keep in mind for some context: this speaker is TINY and due to its size limitation, it will not vibrate an entire room with bass. The sound is appealing for personal use or use in a small group, with great mids and highs. The build quality is durable and it’s cheap enough that I’m not worried about just tossing it in a bag or using it on the beach. As of now I’ve put every other speaker I’ve gotten aside to keep this as my main go-to when I need decent sound that I can just toss in a pocket.
Authors Note: It is possible to get bigger speakers that will have better sound quality at a similar price point. I am specifically reviewing this product as a pocket speaker and comparing it to competitors that I own. It excels far above any other pocket speaker and even out performs many bigger and more expensive speakers. Importing directly from other sources (Ali, eBay, Gearbest, etc) is a more reasonable price.
Where to Buy
Build Quality & Appearance
My initial impression with this speaker was shock at how small it is. From the product photos, I thought it looked at least twice as big, but truthfully it’s only about 4.5 inches long. The build quality of this speaker is decent overall. It is a plastic speaker with a metal grille and thick silicone shell to make it shock/waterproof. With the skin on, the speaker feels like it could take a beating. It is solid, with no flex or creak, and the buttons feel pleasant to press. The silicone shell is grippy and thick. This is where the only negative comment I have about the speaker comes in: the silicon shell just slides onto the speaker and I doubt its actual waterproof capability. It takes about the same force to remove as a TPU phone case. I ended up gluing it on after poking around to see what was underneath, just to make sure it wouldn’t accidentally slide off.
The audio quality of this speaker is absolutely fantastic considering its size limitation. The range is expansive and it sounds great at both low and high volumes. It is missing the deepest of bass notes, but this is a bit of a give-in. I find I prefer listening to rock and metal with this speaker more than dubstep or other electronic music that makes use of deep bass. It hits all the high technical notes and there is no distortion in the treble range. Mids are warm and pleasant and the low notes that the speaker can produce have a bit of punch. I find this speaker to be best positioned in a lap while sitting, or in the middle of a small group. It doesn’t have much impact in an open room as the sound does fall off fairly quickly when distanced from the speaker, but again that is a limitation of size more than anything. Volume is pretty decent as well – as loud as I’d ever want to listen in public without being embarrassed about my choices in music. The best part is, in my hours of listening I’ve noticed no trace of distortion except at the very highest volume setting, but that is to be expected from a speaker in its price class.
Battery life is rated at five hours, and in my first few runs though I got around that much before the speaker quit. I’ll update this in the future if there are any significant changes.
The speaker has a +/- button for volume which also act as next/previous track buttons. It isn’t immediately obvious, but a quick press changes the track and holding the button changes the volume. The other odd thing I noticed is that the LED indicator seems to be programmed backwards. The light slowly flashes while the device is playing and is solid when it is connected but not playing. Weird.
I gave a glowing review of this speaker because I think it’s great, but do keep in mind that is is a small speaker. At this price point it is possible to get a much larger Bluetooth speaker that will sound better. In comparison to other pocket speakers I’ve bought (and even some larger ones) this is the best sounding one I have tried so far. As long as your expectations are in line with the size and a compact speaker is something you are in the market for, you will likely feel the same way I do about it. It’s not going to have the oomph of something 10x its size, but it really does hit a good balance in terms of sound quality and size. It’s rare that I’m this excited about a product but I believe that my long search for the perfect small Bluetooth speaker is finally over.