Best in class

Boom 3

BIG sound

Megaboom 3

For my money, the Ultimate Ears Boom 3 is the best Bluetooth speaker on the market. It combines great features with excellent sound to deliver the gold standard for portable, water-resistant speakers.

$150 at Amazon

Pros

  • Excellent sound
  • Rugged, but gorgeous design
  • IP67 water resistance
  • Customizable EQ

Cons

  • No 3.5mm jack

The Megaboom 3 is simply the larger, louder Boom 3. It boasts stronger bass, longer battery life, and the same excellent feature set, but it's more expensive.

$200 at Amazon

Pros

  • Great bass
  • Customizable EQ
  • IP67 water resistance
  • Exceptional battery life

Cons

  • No 3.5mm jack
  • Expensive straight from Ultimate Ears

The breakdown

When comparing these speakers, it's important to remember that they're in different classes. The Megaboom 3 is to the Boom 3 as Charmeleon is to Charmander. It's the bigger, more powerful, logical next step as you move up the Ultimate Ears line. For that reason, they have very similar specs.

Boom 3 Megaboom 3
Battery life 15 hours 20 hours
Water resistance IP67 IP67
Bluetooth range 45 meters 45 meters
Frequency range 90Hz - 20kHz 60Hz - 20kHz
# of color options 4 4
Weight 608 grams 925 grams
Charges via Micro-USB and Power Up Micro-USB and Power Up

The Megaboom 3 is the larger speaker, so its radiators are larger, offering a wider frequency range, meaning deeper, richer bass. However, its maximum sound level is equal to that of the Boom 3 at 90dBA. It'll just offer a more full, well-rounded sound. The larger size also means a bigger battery, so the Megaboom 3 gets an extra five hours over the Boom 3.

In terms of how rugged and water-resistant each speaker is, they're virtually identical. They're both rated IP67, which means they can survive submersion in up to three feet of water for up to 30 minutes. The Megaboom 3 is, however, heavier, so it won't survive a drop as easily as its smaller counterpart unless you keep it in a case.

These are virtually identical speakers, so go with the less expensive option.

Each speaker casing is made from the same light-shifting fabric, creating a metallic sheen that looks both formidable and elegant. The volume buttons are on the side, and both have the Magic Button and power button on top, with the Magic Button performing the same duties related to Apple Music and Deezer playlists. You can also use it to play/pause and skip tracks.

Both the Boom 3 and Megabooms 3 can pair with over 150 Boom and Megaboom speakers to create a massive network of sound, though the Party Up function can only receive and play audio from a single source.

So which should you choose? It all comes down to how loud you want your speaker and whether you really value increased bass response for an additional $50. If you just want a simple, great-sounding portable speaker, then go with the Boom 3, especially for its Amazon price of $150. This'll be the case for most people. However, audiophiles might find the extra $50 to be worth it for the Megaboom 3.

Our pickt

Boom 3

Best Bluetooth speaker for most people

The Boom 3 is the best in its class, and it beats out its larger counterpart simply because it's worth $150. It has a well-rounded sound, little to no distortion at high volumes, it looks gorgeous, and the customizable EQ is the icing on the cake.

Upgrade pick

Megaboom 3

Bigger sound for a bigger price

The Megaboom 3 is simply a larger Boom 3, and while it delivers more in the sound department, it's just not enough to justify the price jump and spec similarities. But if you're of the "go big or go home" camp, then, by all means, go bigger. You still can't go wrong.

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