New Wonderboom 3 Bluetooth speaker is a huge frustration– I anticipated much better

four Ultimate Ears Wonderboom 3 speakers on wooden table

( Image credit: TechRadar)

Update: Ultimate Ears has actually now validated that the Wonderboom 3 supports Bluetooth 5.2.

It’s obvious I’ve been hankering after the UE Wonderboom 3 for many years. Why? Due to the fact that the 2019 Wonderboom 2 was simply so great– even now, it’s sitting quite as one of the finest Bluetooth speakers we’ve had the enjoyment of screening.

And lastly, today, it has actually shown up! The Ultimate Ears Wonderboom 3 comes in 4 brand-new coats: Joyous Bright (which is in fact gray), Hyper Pink, Performance Blue, and Active Black– all made with a minimum of accredited 31% post-consumer plastic.

The crisp, bassy audio needs to now last as much as 14 hours– ie. an hour longer than the Wonderboom 2– and the mobile Bluetooth variety depends on a declared 40 m versus the 30 m series of the second-generation Wonderboom.

But that’s it, folks. That’s where the upgrade list ends, as far as I can see.

As with the Wonderboom 2, the Wonderboom 3 still drifts. It likewise has the exact same charming ‘outside increase’ tree button on its underside, and it brings the like-for-like IP67 score for dust and water ingress. It likewise sports the very same micro USB battery charger that was fairly old news even in 2019– so anybody looking to bring one USB-C battery charger to rule them all will be sorely out of luck.

Ultimate Ears was rather cagey about the Bluetooth variation supported at launch and, as far as I can inform, there’s been no modification in the chauffeur setup under its brand-new, environmentally friendly coat either– no racetrack-shaped motorists (as seen in JBL’s most current variety of speakers), no additional couple of watts of power, absolutely nothing.

I’ll be sincere: I’m dissatisfied.

Did I discuss that the Wonderboom 3 is not backwards suitable with older Wonderbooms either? If you have a Wonderboom 2 kicking about, you will not be able to daisy-chain it to your glossy brand-new Wonderboom 3 for larger mono or stereo noise.

Opinion: Wonderboom 3 is woefully short on upgrades, and I reckon it will not clean

Ultimate Ears Wonderboom 3 back detail, showing microUSB charging port

New Ultimate Ears speaker, usual microUSB charging port … ( Image credit: TechRadar)

Ultimate Ears is leading with the sustainability angle here, however as an enthusiast of its items, I ‘d wished for more.

Having held the Wonderboom 3 (anticipate a complete evaluation quickly), the brand-new colorways aside, I discover it identical from its older brother or sister– and therein lies the issue.

Where is the USB-C fast charge? And would it have been excessive to ask UE’s engineers to provide its devoted fan base a buddy app? That may have unlocked to multi-room connection utilizing these budget-friendly speakers or boosting the noise with its most recent Hyperboom– which is quickly to introduce in a brand-new white colorway.

Don’t get me incorrect, the Hyperboom is an extremely gifted item, and the Wonderboom 2 was an award winner back in 2019 throughout my period at What Hi-Fi?, that makes this 2022 upgrade even more frustrating.

In the 3 years considering that 2019, Bluetooth 5.0, 5.1, 5.2, and even 5.3 have actually surfaced in contending designs and fresh cordless earbuds, in addition to countless more recent Bluetooth speakers boasting ever-improved power handling, much better endurance, mics and additional advantages like USB-A ports to charge your phone while you boogie. And this simply … well, it does not appear enough.

I comprehend that UE’s focus has been on utilizing more environmentally friendly products, however if you select not to update, you have not added to the issue now, have you? The fast-fashion nature of consumerism is definitely just intensified here since, I think, with these weak upgrades (an additional hour of play, an additional 10 m of variety) couple of fans will purchase a third-gen design.

Ultimate Ears has actually introduced the Wonderboom 3 with the exact same asking cost as the inaugural Wonderboom and Wonderboom 2: $99/ ₤89/ AU$149 Will it end up being the most recent addition to our finest water resistant speakers purchasing guide? I can’t see it occurring– due to the fact that an essential upgrade (and let’s be clear, I indicate the battery charger) hasn’t been made.

Is it worth purchasing a brand-new Wonderboom 3? Clearly, you need to evaluate on your own (and I do like that pink colorway), however for me, the response is no. You do get a micro USB charging cable television in package– that’s helpful due to the fact that I do not understand that I still have one in your home– however if you like your tech to move with the times, this is an upgrade to miss out on.

Ultimate Ears Wonderboom 3 in pink, on wooden table

Love the pink and lime colorway, however 3 years on from the Wonderboom 2 I ‘d wished for more. ( Image credit: TechRadar)
Becky Scarrott

Becky is a senior personnel author at TechRadar (which she has actually been ensured describes competence instead of age) concentrating on all things audio. Prior to signing up with the group, she invested 3 years at What Hi-Fi? screening and evaluating whatever from wallet-friendly cordless earbuds to substantial high-end stereo. Prior to getting her MA in Journalism in 2018, Becky freelanced as an arts critic together with a 22- year profession as an expert dancer and aerialist– any love of dance begins with a love of music. Becky has actually formerly added to Stuff, FourFourTwo and The Stage. When not composing, she can still be discovered tossing shapes in a dance studio, nowadays with differing degrees of success.

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