Party for One: Soundcore Flare Mini Waterproof Speaker
Singing in the shower with the Soundcore Flare Mini Shower Speaker made me feel like the star of my own show. With the best shower speakers of 2021, you can too. But I’d highly recommend the Soundcore Flare Mini if you’re in the market for a waterproof Bluetooth shower speaker.
The Flare Mini had an impressive sound, held true to the IPX7 rating, has easy controls, a Bluetooth range that matched competitors, and fit snugly into a backpack’s mesh side pocket. This shower speaker worked wonders in the shower and performed well on a pool deck or as a home speaker.
About the Soundcore Flare Mini Shower Speaker
The two speakers behind the 360-degree audio of the Soundcore Flare Mini are back-to-back 5W (10W total) neodymium drivers. The Soundcore BassUp tech uses the neodymium drivers with an in-house tuned digital signal processor with multiple dynamic range controllers to automatically adjust bass frequencies, resulting in a continuously powerful and deep sound.
The rechargeable Lithium-ion battery life is stated at 12 hours depending on the volume level, music, and LED lights. The charging time is a claimed 3.5 hours, but the speaker does work while charging. Notifications do come through the speaker if your phone’s volume is on, and an integrated microphone allows for phone calls in the shower.
It supports a 4.2 Bluetooth connection, and the range maxes out at 66 feet (20 m). The Soundcore Flare Mini elicits enough power for a gathering; pair two Flare Mini’s together, and you’ll have a party.
Soundcore Flare Mini Test & Review
The Soundcore Flare Mini was pretty self-explanatory to set up. Right out the box, there was enough charge to familiarize me with the six control buttons.
The buttons surround the speaker’s top surface, like a clock face. Two buttons are unique to the Flare Mini — they control the LED Halo light show and playback. Other buttons control Bluetooth pairing, power, and volume. The reaction time of the shower speaker to my phone controls was unrecognizable. It felt like I was controlling directly from my phone.
The Soundcore Flare Mini is larger than other mini shower speakers available, but it was still adequately portable. It fit snugly into my shower caddy. I carried it in the main compartment of my backpack while I rode down to the local springs. I stored it in my car’s cupholder and shoved it into my messenger bag before heading out on a bicycle.
But there are other choices with the same IP water resistance rating and with similar sound output in smaller sizes or with carabiner or clip attachment points for smaller hydration packs or beach bags.
The IPX7 rating of the Soundcore Flare Mini means this waterproof shower speaker can withstand accidental submersion in freshwater up to 1 meter for no longer than 30 minutes. Showers were no problem for the speaker. It was actually my favorite place to use it. When singing in the shower with it, the Halo LED light show syncing to the beat and 360-degree surround sound merging with my voice, I was the best singer around.
I noticed a slight change in sound quality when the speaker was partially submerged, but then it seemed to readjust to the wet conditions, and the audio smoothed out at a lower volume. I purposely dropped the waterproof speaker into my kitchen sink for 15 minutes while cooking dinner. The volume was still loud enough to enjoy, and the lights lit up my dark sink. To my surprise, the shower speaker floated. The Flare Mini’s weight distribution design is such that the charging port — which is covered by an integrated seal — is always above the waterline.
After 15 minutes, I pulled it out by the top, let the water drain slightly, and set it on a towel. The music never stopped, only adjusted, and continuously got louder as the water drained from the speaker. The buttons were still instantly responsive, and the Bluetooth pairing worked immediately afterward.
Air drying the speaker at home took quite a while. It still felt damp to the touch after a few hours. Feeling slightly worried about putting the speaker in my pack after a day at the pool, I dropped it into the local springs to see how it dried in the sun. Outside in a larger body of water, the Soundcore Flare Mini seemed quieter when submerged, but dried faster on the pool deck than indoors.
The Soundcore Way
Soundcore’s goal is to slash the notion that quality audio is only available from seasoned manufacturers. (Manufacturers that, presumably, hold the secrets to quality sound and can therefore hike up speaker prices.) By tapping into listeners’ need for innovation and integrity, the Soundcore team succeeded in creating award-winning speakers and immersive headphones available at a fair price.
Review Wrap-Up & Pricing Info
I’ll boldly claim the Soundcore Flare Mini will fit anyone’s needs as a waterproof speaker. In larger arenas —the beach or house party, say — a shower speaker with an IP67 rating for dust and higher wattage output, would probably be preferable. But the Soundcore Flare Mini makes up for any marginal shortcomings in other ways — like its affordable MSRP of $43.
After testing the speaker system, sound quality, IP rating, portability, durability, and aesthetic, I won’t be searching for another shower speaker.