BlueAnt is no stranger to the Bluetooth speaker game. While we’ve reviewed some smaller speakers in the past like the X0i and X1i, we now have the pleasure of checking out one of BlueAnt’s larger offerings. Valued at A$579, the X6 party speaker provides some impressive, balanced sound along with a laundry list of handy features to get the party started and keep it going. While similarly priced speakers within this price range cut it close in terms of features, there’s certainly plenty of value to be found here.
The X6 looks and feels as standard as they come. It’s rather slim and minimal, weighing in at 8.84kg; but looks can be deceiving. It’s packing an impressive amount of features thanks to a large control panel located on top.
You would think the X6 is just a Bluetooth 5.0 speaker, and for the most part, you would be right. But it also allows for USB, MicroSD and AUX playback, along with the ability to plug in up to two microphones, which are actually included. Bring on the karaoke. The front of the speaker also includes a small display to highlight your current input, along with a dedicated charging light, showing red to indicate when it’s charging and green when full.
While it’s not as visually interesting as something like Samsung’s new ST40B which features a triangular design, it’s hard to criticise it for playing things safe. But overall, the X6 feels sturdy, reliable and minimal enough that it will surely suit most homes.
The front of the speaker lights up and can also be changed to one of fifteen light modes, while a dedicated Bass Boost Button pumps up those lower notes when you need it the most. It even includes a 6.5mm guitar input, should you want to use it as an amp. The integrated carry handle which sits just below this panel is also rather sturdy, and feels easy enough to move around, compared to some speakers which insert an awkward cavity somewhere in the back. While most images show the X6 standing, it can even be placed on its side thanks to a second set of rubber feet.
The X6 can also function both on AC power and on battery. The 66Wh battery provides up to 8 hours of playtime at 50% volume. But this is where I find the X6 stumbles a little, as the playtime advertised can vary drastically at louder volumes. I got a 6-hour run out of this, which was enough to last the night. While it’s not an issue for me personally within the house with power points nearby, it’s worth noting to those who are looking to take this out on the go. There’s also no mention of any splash or water resistance, so be careful around a pool or the beach. It’s a little unfortunate, as similarly priced party speakers like the Samunsg ST40B pack in 12 hours of battery life and an IPX5 rating for those accidental spills.
The X6 provides 160 watts of power, with two 6.5″ woofers and two 2.5″ tweeters, offering up a rather balanced sound stage. It’s also relatively easy to get this thing turned on and paired, thanks to the dedicated pairing button and an easy-to-read display. The Bass Boost Button certainly does the job when it comes to harder dance songs that rely on lower notes but doesn’t really add much to the overall sound stage when used on songs that generally lack bass themselves.
I had the chance to use this for a few recent gatherings, and the bottom line for me was the overall volume. The aforementioned 160 watts of power will certainly feel enough for most homes, as I even had to go as far as to turn this down a little upon request. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
Verdict & Value
The BlueAnt X6 might not break the mould when it comes to party speakers. But it also doesn’t have to. While the lack of some sort of water resistance rating and sub-par battery life is disappointing, it’s not necessarily a deal breaker when it comes to overall value. Thanks to impressive sound quality, included microphones, various lighting effects and dedicated Bass Boost features, there are plenty of reasons to bring this along to the party.
FOUR STARS (OUT OF FIVE)
Highlights: Solid sound quality; Plenty of ways to connect and play; Sturdy build quality
Lowlights: Battery life isn’t great, rarely lasts the advertised 8 hours; Lack of any water resistance rating
Review based on unit supplied by BlueAnt.