Bose SoundLink Flex portable wireless speaker review

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There’s a portable wireless speaker in almost every home; whether you want one for camping and travel, for outdoor playtime, or just to bring to the office or the jobsite, there’s all kinds of ways to use them.
Audio giant Bose is known worldwide for quality audio products, and the Soundlink Flex promises to be no exception. Bose Soundlink Flex is a portable Bluetooth speaker that’s designed to be rugged and durable, and to deliver a lot of sound for its size, with the promise of “astonishing bass.” I got a chance to spend a few weeks with the new Soundlink Flex. I’ll tell you what it’s likie to use, how it sounds and about its promised features.
Looks and Style
The Soundlink Flex comes in three colors: Black, white smoke, and stone blue. It has a powder-coated steel grille and silicon-covered exterior. Bose claims the finish will be peel and flake-proof and that it will resist UV and rust corrosion while maintaining a sleek, stylish look.
The speaker is rather weighty for its size, meaning it feels well made and durable but not heavy. It’s wide and narrow and can be used on its side, on its back, or hanging from its built in webbed strap. Sitting on its’ side, with just a couple rubber nibs to hold it up does make it rather tippy and on any kind of unstable surface (boat, RV) it will almost certainly flip over onto its back.
Buttons and Controls
There are 5 buttons along the top panel, including a power button, volume up and down buttons, a multi-function button, and a Bluetooth pairing button, as well as a pinhole microphone. The multi-function button allows you to stop and start tracks, answer calls, and move between tracks. Two presses will skip forward a track, and three will go back a track.
Durability and Handling
The speaker is rated at IP67, meaning that it’s (6) totally protected from dust and solid objects and (7) Protected from all jets of water and can be temporarily immersed in up to one metre of water for at least 30 minutes.
Conveniently, the Bose Soundlink Flex also floats (unlike another competitor’s new portable wireless offering), so it’s unlikely that you’d be even able to keep it submerged long enough to cause damage, so for all intents and purposes, the speaker is waterproof. This portable speaker is definitley designed for taking along with you on hikes, camping trips, even on the water.
Bose says it can withstand drops, crushing and more abuse. In my limited tests, it seemed to hold up well

Sound quality
Cutting right to the chase, the Bose Soundlink Flex is a great sounding speaker. It’s plenty powerful and can easily fill a room, though I didn’t get much chance to try it outdoors due to the cold weather. The sound is well balanced, has good, strong bass and an overall top notch sound.
 Position IQ 
Bose claims the Soundlink Flex features a technology called Position IQ, where an internal sensor detects which alignment it’s resting in (vertical, horizontal, or hanging) and adjust the mids and high frequencies audio for maximum clarity. While there isn’t an adjustable EQ for the speaker (not uncommon for outdoor Bluetooth speakers), Position IQ uses predetermined equalization for the different orientations it can be in.  Cool I guess, but I didn’t really notice any audible difference.
Battery life & charging
The Soundlink Flex is charged with an included USB-C cable. A single charge of the rechargeable lithium-ion battery should last roughly 12 hours, depending on the volume level you choose. A full charge should take approximately four hours, and Bose suggests using their cable, and that other cables may influence the charging time. That lengthy charging time is a bit or a downside for me, as is the lacklustre battery life. There are other speakers out there of similar size that can outlast this one, so folks needing to go more time between charges might want to shop around.
I will say that the speaker does seem to go to sleep effectively, disconnecting and shutting itself down when not in use, so as not to drain battery unnecessarily.

Overall review Bose Soundlink Flex

Overall this is a really great portable wireless speaker. It’s small but portable and powerful. The sound quality is awesome and it’s easy to set up and use and it seems wickedly durable, along with being waterproof and floating. Downsides? It can be a bit finicky on the connections sometimes, and while it may remember other devices, it doesn’t always connect to them on its own automatically after being connected to another device,. The total battery life is also just on the okay side, and it takes hours to fully recharge.

If you can get past that, then you’ll love the Bose Soundlink Flex. It sells for about $189CAD
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