On the market for a soda can-sized portable Bluetooth speaker for under $50? Let us introduce you to the Anker Soundcore Flare Mini. The Soundcore Flare Mini is the smaller iteration of the hugely popular Soundcore Flare range.
Why is the Flare range so popular? They’re affordable portable Bluetooth speakers with good sound and premium features, including party lights. Let’s take a closer look at the Soundcore Flare Mini and see whether or not it’s the right Bluetooth speaker for you.
The Design & Features
If you’re familiar with the Soundcore Flare, the Flare Mini is just smaller and lighter. At just 5.5-inches high and weighing in at a mere 16.9 oz, the Flare Mini is the perfect travel companion to throw in a backpack and enjoy your music while out and about.
The 360° speaker is covered in a waterproof acoustic fabric offering both form and function to the Flare Mini. The Flare Mini is rated IPX7 protecting the speaker to a depth of 1 meter (3.2 foot) for up to 30 minutes. Perfect for use around the pool or even in the shower.
The speaker’s base features a 360° LED strip which lights up in dual-color blending into one another. The effect is really sexy and better than the usual single color we’re used to.
The lights can be set to phase, pulse, and glow (or even all three) in time to music creating a party vibe or chilled ambiance to your favorite beats.
Unfortunately, the Flare Mini doesn’t connect to the Soundcore app so there isn’t too much customization you can do with the LED lights. Having said that the lights work well and pulse in time to the music. For a small Bluetooth speaker, that’s all you really need. It’s more about the sound anyway!
If you’re looking to make even more noise, the Flare Mini can be paired with a second Flare Mini in stereo. This is great for a little boost in sound. As a lightweight, compact Bluetooth speaker, carrying two Flare Minis won’t be an issue. Great for taking away on holiday.
One of the most essential features of any portable Bluetooth speaker is the battery. With the Flare Mini, you get up to 12 hours of playing time. The actual time depends on the volume you play the speaker at and whether or not you’re using the lights.
The Flare Mini allows for Bluetooth only connections. Unfortunately, no AUX or other inputs can be used. The speaker features Bluetooth 4.2, which is not the latest version of the wireless technology but more than sufficient for a small Bluetooth speaker.
You should get about 66ft of range between your phone and the Flare Mini which is more than enough. This is a small speaker so anything more than 50ft, and you’re no longer in the sweet spot to listen to it properly anyway!
What Does The Anker Soundcore Flare Mini Sound Like?
The first thing you’ll notice when listening to the Flare Mini is it’s loud! Seriously loud for the size. To give you a side-by-side comparison, the larger Flare is 12W whereas the Flare Mini is 10W.
The speaker delivers 360° of sound so you can position the Flare Mini in the middle of a room and everyone can enjoy the same audio quality.
While the Flare does provide a better bass sound, the Flare Mini is not far behind. Granted, this is a really compact speaker so don’t expect a massive bass response, but there’s definitely enough punch to enjoy your favorite beats and have a little jam session. Even if it is on your own!
The mid-range is somewhat heavily accentuated, which is what makes the speaker seem so loud. The highs are also reasonably bright, making songs sound more exciting, but it’s not as clean and clear a sound you would get on a JBL or Sony Bluetooth speaker.
However, at half the price of its premium competitors, the Flare Mini starts to look like the better choice. Especially since this is a portable Bluetooth speaker and you’re going for convenience and affordability over sound quality.
What’s in the Box?
- Soundcore Flare Mini Bluetooth speaker
- Charging cable
So is the Soundcore Flare Mini the right speaker for you? Let’s look at some scenarios:
- Travel speaker – being small, lightweight, and compact the Flare Mini is a great speaker for nomads and travelers. The speaker won’t take up too much space in your luggage, and it’s loud enough for a hotel room party.
- Small apartments and dorm rooms – need a speaker to make just enough noise that you can enjoy the music without bothering your neighbors? Then the Flare Mini is perfect. It’s loud, but not loud enough to annoy people on the other side of the wall. The speaker is also small, so won’t take up too much space.
- Pool and shower parties – while the Flare Mini might be a little small for a pool party of more than 4 people, it’s still a great poolside companion for some background beats. The Flare Mini is also great for use in the bath or shower. The speaker’s IPX7 rating means you don’t have to worry about getting it wet. Just don’t submerge the Flare Mini more than 3 feet!
If you are looking for a loud Bluetooth speaker, then you might be a little disappointed with the Flare Mini. We would recommend one of these options instead. While the Flare Mini is touted as a party speaker, it’s more aesthetics than sound.
Should you buy the Flare Mini? If you only have a budget of $50, then absolutely this is a good buy. There are very few good Bluetooth speakers at this price point.
While the Flare Mini might not sound as good as the JBLs and Sonys, it’s certainly better than much of the competition under $50.