Ultimate Ears have
detonated released the MEGABLAST and BLAST. True to their heritage they are portable, IP67 waterproof, with the distinctive Ultimate Ears 360° sound, bass/mid signature.
MEGABLAST is Ultimate Ears loudest speaker to date pumping out 93dB (40% louder than MEGABOOM) and has Amazon Alexa Voice control. That means both Wi-Fi dual band and Bluetooth built in.
BLAST is Ultimate Ears portable ‘drink-bottle’ size also with Amazon Alexa. Its characteristics are like the Boom 2. We estimate this speaker should top out at around 80dB.
Ultimate Ears (a Logitech company) does not publish specifications like watts RMS or total harmonic distortion, so the only way you can judge their products is to listen to them. GadgetGuy will be reviewing these in mid-May.
Chris LaBrutto, Global Product Director for Ultimate Ears, gave GadgetGuy a preview
“When we design acoustic systems, we try to achieve a frequency response curve that is as flat as possible. Some brands want things to be loud, so they artificially pull back on bass and use the energy that they save from pulling back on bass to drive the SPL [sound pressure level] higher.”
Chris was right. Our frequency Response meter showed 20Hz-20kHz response flat from around 65Hz to 15kHz – fantastic for a waterproof speaker. Sound signature is warm and sweet (bass/mids boosted, treble recessed) typical of Sony speakers. Regrettably, the App has no EQ function.
Although we did not achieve 93dB from the MEGABLAST, it was louder than expected from a portable speaker. At full volume, the signature was still true when most other portable speakers develop a shrill harshness.
GadgetGuy: Why choose Alexa? Yes, we know it has been around longer in the US, but here Google Assistant seems to be on a stronger ascent.
Chris: We chose Alexa to start with because at least in the US, consumers are gravitating towards that platform. It has the largest installed base, the most momentum, and the biggest ecosystem of supported products.
In the long run, we will follow our customers wherever they go. As they begin to adopt other platforms, we’ll find a way to support them. Same as with our Bluetooth speakers, we support iOS and Android. We want to support all the big platforms that customers use. It’s going to be the same with our line of connected speakers.
By the way, there are hardware differences between what Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri need.
GadgetGuy: You have a lot of stiff competition with Alexa and other speakers.
Chris: Our guiding motto is that getting better has no finish line. We stick to mobility, durability, and won’t compromise Ultimate Ears sound quality, and build quality. There may be better Alexa Hi-Fi audiophile speakers, but not better mobility speakers.
Ultimate Ears is great for kids. Their natural instinct is to want to throw our WONDERDBOOM (GadgetGuy review here) around like a football, dunk it in the pool, take it into the bath/shower and that is true mobility. At the same time, MEGABLAST and BLAST add Amazon Alexa voice control and all that offers. I see these in the kitchen, paired up for stereo and grouped in party mode (coming). These are things that make Ultimate Ears special.