Bluetooth speakers were initially meant to be portable at the expense of quality sound. Now we’ve reached a stage where the sound can be great and the speaker can weigh less than an anvil. Bang & Olufsen brand B&O Play has made several speakers on the larger side of portable that offer tremendous sound over the years, and now it has unveiled its most powerful yet in the Beolit 17.
If you’ve seen the Beolit 12, which was released in 2012, or the Beolit 15, released in 2015, the Beolit 17 should look fairly familiar. Award-winning designed Cecilie Manz designed both of those speakers, as well as the Beolit 17. While it isn’t as rugged as some other speakers, this model is constructed from a polymer that the company says can easily withstand normal everyday use, with an anodized pearl-blasted aluminum grill. A leather handle adds a stylish touch and easy portability at the same time.
Inside, the Beolit 17 is packing some serious power, with dual 35-watt Class D amplifiers for bass and treble, and a peak power of 240 watts spread across two channels. This juice powers a single 5.5-inch long-stroke wideband woofer, three 1.5-inch wideband tweeters, and dual 4-inch passive bass radiators for solid low end. The sound is omnidirectional, so no matter where you are in relation to the speaker, the music should sound just as loud.
Wireless connectivity is provided by Bluetooth 4.2 with ADK 4.0. If you’re using an older media player or just want to plug in, a 3.5mm auxiliary jack is also built-in. Onboard controls include on and off, playback, volume, and a button that turns Bluetooth on and off and enables pairing. Other features of the speaker can be accessed and customized via the Beoplay app.
The sound isn’t the only area where the Beolit 17 is powerful. In addition to the booming volume, the speaker also features a battery that offers up to 24 hours of playtime. Charging is done via a USB-C port on the back that can charge the speaker from completely empty to full in as little as 2.5 hours.
The B&O Play Beolit 17 is available in Stone Grey and Natural finishes, and retails for $500. For more information or to buy the speaker, see the company’s website.