Ultimate Ears Wonderboom 2: stereo pairing, 13-hour battery, waterproof

Ultimate Ears launches Wonderboom 2

It's been two years since we first heard – and gave five stars to – the Ultimate Ears Wonderboom budget Bluetooth speaker, so the arrival of its sequel today is well-timed.

The Wonderboom 2 is the result of a notable upgrade in terms of specs and features. Put the two side by side, as we've been able to do, and you'll notice it’s smidgeons taller and wider than the original. More fundamental is what's inside that slightly larger casing, though...

It contains a new chipset promising a crisper sound and 10 per cent more bass. There’s also a brand-new fir tree-shaped, light-up button on the bottom of the unit, which, while nothing to do with recycling or using music to encourage tree growth (although that is a thing), "boosts" sound during outdoor use.

You get 30 per cent more music listening for your money too, with 13 hours of battery life compared to the 10 offered by the original Wonderboom. Charging still takes just under three hours. 

With a new IP67 rating, it’s still just as waterproof as the first version (and it still floats), but the wraparound material covering your 360 degrees of sound has changed slightly, making it sand- and dust-proof – a strong option for the beach, then. 

The design on the top of the speaker has been tweaked too. A central circular button where the branding used to be allows you to pair two Wonderboom 2s. This was a feature of the original Wonderboom, but the upgrade here is that long-pressing said buttons on two of the new speakers will pair them in stereo mode. You can pair the Wonderboom 2 with a Wonderboom - but only in mono.

The chord loop on the top of the Wonderboom 2 is now flat and slightly stretchier, too, with a little rubber slider in the middle which takes care of branding. That unmistakable yellow charger is sadly gone, in favour of a white cable, but it's still of the micro-USB variety.

The Wonderboom 2 retails at £89 and is available online and in stores today. It currently comes in five block colours, all slightly more refined than the tie-dye and patterned colourways of the original Wonderboom.

We've had the pleasure of the Wonderboom 2's company of late, so watch this space for our imminent review... 


Read all Ultimate Ears reviews

US customers can now design their own Ultimate Ears Boom 3

Best portable speakers: Brilliant budget Bluetooth speakers

Becky has been a full-time staff writer at What Hi-Fi? since March 2019. Prior to gaining her MA in Journalism in 2018, she freelanced as an arts critic alongside a 20-year career as a professional dancer and aerialist – any love of dance is of course tethered to a love of music. Becky has previously contributed to Stuff, FourFourTwo, This is Cabaret and The Stage. When not writing, she dances, spins in the air, drinks coffee, watches football or surfs in Cornwall with her other half – a football writer whose talent knows no bounds.