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Up close and personal with Sol Republic’s water resistant Punk Bluetooth speaker

Headphone maker Sol Republic’s foray into the outrageously popular genre of Bluetooth speakers takes a new turn with a durable little palm-sized hunk of sound known simply as the Punk. We recently spent some time with the speaker to see how it stands up.

The first thing that got our attention is the Punk’s rubberized exterior shell, which is durable enough for a roll on a muddy sidewalk, and grippy enough for a game of catch, complete with a self-provided soundtrack. The controls along the top panel are extremely easy to access, and we paired the speaker to our source device in mere seconds.

Sol Republic touts the Punk’s extended Bluetooth range of around 60 feet, which held up pretty well in our initial testing, though only in an open area with no barriers. And while the speaker lacks an on-board microphone, it does offer an output port, which transforms it into a Bluetooth adaptor to stream music from your source device to virtually any stereo.

As for the sound performance, as promised, the speaker does get extremely loud for its size without distorting, though we could hear the DSP compression working overtime at top volume to keep things from rattling. There’s not a lot of detail or bass to speak of, but it does offer a warm and punchy midrange that should suffice for most music genres while you barbecue, or chill out at the beach.

Sol Republic’s new Punk is available now in a variety of vibrant colors for $70.

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