While most of what I do with bluetooth is all about getting sound to my ears – and only my ears – there is a time and a place for bluetooth speakers as well. When we’ve got family or friends over for dinner, we’ll tend to fire one up for some background music. If the gathering moves to the backyard, sometimes that single speaker just can’t get it done, and you wish you had a second speaker, right? That’s where the iLive Dual Bluetooth Speakers come in.
As you can plainly see from the photos, two speakers come in the packaging. Rather than having to run a cable between them, iLive has done something simple and clever. Basically, you start the speakers up, press and hold a button on one, and then that speaker becomes the controlling device (announced with voice prompts). Then, whatever music you’ve got flowing from your phone pumps out of both speakers, without any lag or delay that I could detect.
Now, this does not mean you’re outputting the sound in stereo, because you’re not. However, you are doubling the amount of sound you can put out, which is perfect for pushing some tunes out to your backyard party. Or, hey, even if you’re just doing yardwork, whatever the reason. When it’s sunny out, you’ve got even more reason to use these, as there are solar panels on top of the speakers. And if it’s not sunny, they are water-resistant, and the ground stakes should keep them up out of the puddles.
These solar panels won’t deliver enough to fully charge the speakers on their own, but they will trickle the electrons in while you’re using them, helping to extend the life of the speakers for sure. There are a few more tricks hiding in the iLive Dual Bluetooth Speakers. For one, you can plug in a microSD card to push your tunes, so you don’t even need your phone. Secondly, you can plug in an aux cable to push the music out that way if you like.
Finally, when you’ve got that cable plugged in, you can also use the built-in FM radio in the iLive Dual Bluetooth Speakers. You’ll want the cable plugged in to act as an antenna, and then let the speakers auto-scan to see what signals they can pick up. Then, you can just let your local broadcast fill up your backyard, or use them to supplement the sound at your local drive-in theater instead of relying on the car stereo (instead of killing the car battery like I’ve done).
We’ll freely admit, the solar panels on the iLive Dual Bluetooth Speakers are a bit of a gimmick, but we’re also all about solar helping extending battery life in our devices. The FM radio may not be as used, but in that drive in theater scenario, or as an emergency radio, it could be quite handy. And those aside, being able to link them and output twice the sound is never a bad thing. If you want to pick these up for your next party (whenever the weather warms up), you can get them for $69.99 direct from iliveelectronics.com
Specs from iLive
- Special party pack: includes 2 speakers & stakes
- Supports Bluetooth v5
- Wireless Speakers
- Water resistant
- Dual speaker drivers for 360° sound
- Built-in solar panel battery slow charger
- FM Radio, Aux In, and MicroSD
- Pairs both speakers with ease
- Rubberized coating – improved rugged feel
- Voice prompts announce speaker functions and make Bluetooth pairing easier
- Battery life: ~20 hours at 50% volume
- Wireless range: 33 feet
- DC battery power: built-in rechargeable battery
- Dimensions: 3.03 x 3.03 x 6.57 (single speaker)
- Dimensions: 3.03 x 3.03 x 15.68 (single speaker with stake)
- Two Bluetooth speakers
- 2 removable stakes
- User’s guide