Party speakers — powerful and often colorfully lit portable Bluetooth loudspeakers — have been a growing category for several years. In fact, we’ve seen a lot of the big brands in audio — like Sony, JBL, and LG — getting in on the act with a variety of models and prices. But the way you can really tell that this is no longer a flavor-of-the-month trend is that Klipsch is now a player too.
The company known for producing some of the biggest, most powerful speakers you can buy has announced its first two wireless Bluetooth party speakers — the $249 Gig XL and $349 Gig XXL — and they check a lot of boxes for folks who want to do more than just listen to music. You can buy both models starting June 21 at klipsch.com and other retailers.
Like other party speakers, the Gig models have a customizable light show courtesy of LED rings that surround the front-facing drivers. They also feature robust enclosures with integrated carry handles and metal grilles that are designed to be durable enough to survive the parties they will inevitably power. But what sets these speakers apart is that they don’t make karaoke an add-on. Both models come with a wired microphone in the box, letting you begin belting out the tunes right away.
Battery life claims on speakers, headphones, or earbuds often come with a variety of caveats, like “assumes 50% volume” or “only when noise cancellation is turned off.” Not so with the Gig XL/XXL. Klipsch says that the built-in rechargeable batteries will power each speaker for up to eight hours at their maximum volume level.
Two of the same type of Gig speakers can be stereo-paired over Bluetooth for a bigger sound, and in addition to their dedicated mic inputs, each model has a 3.5mm aux-in jack and a USB port for playback of local music files.
The smaller, more portable Gig XL weighs 10 pounds and features one 2-inch tweeter and one 6.5-inch woofer with a bass boost mode. It’s also rated IPX4 for water resistance to the occasional splash (or spilled drink?). It has a maximum acoustic output of 105 decibels (dB).
The larger Gig XXL weighs 18 pounds and doubles the number of drivers with two 2-inch tweeters and two 6.5-inch woofers (again with a bass boost mode) for a maximum acoustic output of 110.7 dB at 0.5m. The Gig XXL also has a quarter-inch instrument cable input that you can use with most guitars, keyboards, drum machines, and other devices.
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