Anker’s Soundcore Rave Neo review: This under-$100 portable party speaker sounds surprisingly good

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Anker has been building some astonishingly superior portable Bluetooth speakers for $one hundred. Not also lengthy in the past I reviewed the Soundcore Motion As well as ($one hundred), which is a minimal larger than your typical compact wireless speaker, but delivers bold seem for its size with plump bass. The Rave Neo is a distinct beast — it is referred to as a “social gathering speaker” and has a built-in cope with and LEDs — but it, also, prices $one hundred and packs some superior punch.


  • Plays loud for its size with plump bass.
  • Straightforward to have about with integrated cope with.
  • IPX7 waterproof.
  • Constructed-in LEDs pulse to your audio.
  • USB-C charging.
  • Fewer than $one hundred.
  • Can be wirelessly linked with other Rave Neo and Soundcore Flare speakers.

Really don’t Like

  • Some might locate lights avoidable.
  • Mono seem.

Anker describes the seem as “colossal.” I wouldn’t go very that significantly, but it can perform pretty loud — it is rated at 50 watts, for whatever that spec is truly worth — and pushes out a superior supporting of bass (it sounds very best with the BassUp bass increase method generally activated). The seem is not exactly refined, but the seem profile operates effectively outdoors or in a larger room mainly because the bass receives dispersed and loses a good deal of its bloat. In other text, it is a speaker that sounds improved if you are not standing right subsequent to it. A bit of length is improved. That said, Anker does have an Indoor listening method in the speaker’s companion app along with other EQ settings, so you can perform about a bit with the seem.

The Soundcore Rave relaxes by the pool.

David Carnoy/CNET

This is a mono speaker with a four-inch woofer, two-inch tweeter and a passive bass port. It weighs lbs and is effortless to lug about, many thanks to its integrated cope with. With a IPX7 h2o-resistance rating, it is waterproof and can be absolutely submerged for a limited time in shallow h2o (in circumstance you come about to drop it in the pool). Battery lifetime is rated at up to eighteen several hours at moderate quantity ranges. That range will drop significantly should really you crank matters up.

If you are so inclined, you can hyperlink with up to one hundred other Rave Neo or Soundcore Flare two ($sixty nine) speakers and sync the audio as effectively as the lights to build a clubby atmosphere. The LEDs can be programmed from a companion app for iOS and Android and you can find also a button on the speaker alone for tweaking the lights. An audio enter and USB demand-out are concealed below a gasket and the speaker costs by using USB-C. It’s outfitted with Bluetooth 5., and I had no trouble pairing and re-pairing with the speaker.

Anker has introduced other lighted portable social gathering speakers, including the Soundcore Trance ($one hundred fifty). There was meant to be a edition of this speaker without lights (not all people likes or wishes them) known as the Trance Go, but that model seems to be shelved and in all probability won’t occur out. You can transform the lights Rave Neo’s lights off if you do locate them annoying.

Other firms make “social gathering” speakers with LEDs, and I have tested some from JBL and Sony. They have a tendency to be much more highly-priced than this model and do not seem any improved. I haven’t tested Sony’s new SRS-XB43, which is an Added Bass model that retails for $250, but the strategy is not so distinct from this: major seem in a fairly compact bundle with an emphasis on bass and the inclusion of flashy lights. The Sony might be built improved — and maybe hold up improved more than time — but it is definitely a good deal much more highly-priced.

The cope with makes it effortless to have.

David Carnoy/CNET

The lengthy and limited of it is that the Soundcore Rave Neo is an excellent price if you are hunting for an very affordable speaker that you can use on the patio, choose to the seashore or tailgate with. It also operates just high-quality inside of, but, as I said, its seem profile is a minimal much more geared to outside use.