Let’s face it, if you simply wanted to listen to audio around the house or out in the yard you would use your phone and a pair of headphones. If, on the other hand, you care about good audio quality and sharing the music with your guests you will want something like the Boston Acoustics Soundware speakers.
These speakers pack a range of nifty features that make them stand out from the competition and despite their size they actually have the audio power to impress as well. The great thing is that they are still competitively priced so you won’t have to drain your bank account too much to invest in a pair. There are a few things about these speakers that make them more attractive if you are looking for speakers that are easy to install in discrete locations, but I will get to that in a minute.
I have said it before and I will say it again, if you buy a set of small, inexpensive speakers you cannot expect the same type of quality that you get from large, expensive speakers. At about 6.5 inches high and just as deep, the Soundware speakers are not very big. To my ears these speakers sound like something you use for background situations where you want some music for atmosphere and not something that you would hook up to your dedicated home theater system, for example. This is not to say that the sound quality is bad, but like I said there are better (and more expensive) options available to get premium sound quality.
The speaker has a 4.5-inch woofer so the bass output is definitely limited by its size as well as the size of the casing. While not bad, you will get much better results if you pair the speakers with a decent subwoofer, especially if you plan on using it for a party. The .75-inch dome tweeter delivers some nice high end sounds and even when cranked never becomes harsh or distorted like some cheaper offerings. For everyday use, you will probably keep these speakers playing at modest levels, but should the need arise to crank the volume it is good to know that drivers can handle it.
Boston Acoustics SOUNDWARE Design
The design is where these speakers really show their use. Instead of the typical square or rectangular shape, the Soundware speakers have a unique polyhedron shape. This means that you can mount the speakers just about anywhere and they will fit in perfectly. The speakers can be mounted using the included corner or wall brackets. A nice design feature is the ball and socket connector which is great for positioning the speaker exactly how you want it. The connector screws directly into the speaker casing and is quite sturdy so you don’t have to worry about everything tumbling down when you try to make adjustments.
If you plan on using the speaker for commercial applications, you will appreciate the safety bar that has been added to one of the surfaces on the speaker for secondary security mounting. Overall I was very impressed with the design of this speaker and even if you do not mount it, it still fits snugly in bookshelves or on top of cabinets. About the only design feature that I don’t really like is that the connectors are of the push-pin variety which I feel is not as secure as the screw-down or 5-way binding posts. It is a matter of personal preference, though and the push-pin connectors are popular with many manufacturers, so don’t let that deter you.
I’m glad to see that Boston Acoustics didn’t spend all that time on coming up with a great design for this speaker without ensuring that the durability is up to scratch as well. These speakers might be small, but they are designed to last. First off, they are waterproof so if you plan on installing them outdoors permanently you won’t have any problems. The mounting bracket is also more than capable of keeping the speaker aloft, but you can make use of the security bar if you are really paranoid that it might be knocked loose. The speaker cabinet is plastic, but it is durable, weather resistant stuff so it won’t crack or become brittle just from being exposed to the elements. According to Boston Acoustics these speakers can withstand everything from scattered shows to tropical depressions and I have no reason to doubt them.
Apart from the unique design and innovative gimballed mount, the Soundware speakers feature “paint-ready” surfaces. Although these speakers are already available in a variety of colors, the enclosures are designed to easily take paint coverage so you can really customize them to your liking. Either paint the speakers to blend in better with your decor or let them stand out. Both grilles and enclosures can handle being painted which is a nice touch.
Boston Acoustics Soundware Speaker Pros
- The innovative design is a cut above the usual generic or industrial looking outdoor speakers
- The easy to use mount makes it a breeze to install these speakers anywhere
- The speakers and grilles can be painted to match your decor perfectly
- Sound quality is very good for a speaker of this size
- Safety bar on speaker for added security
Boston Acoustics Soundware Speaker Cons
- Push-pin connectors are not as secure as other types
- Bass is a bit lacking unless you connect a good subwoofer
- No wireless connectivity
Overall, the Boston Acoustics Soundware speakers impressed me a lot more than I expected they would. Due to the small size of the speakers there isn’t a whole lot of bass, but what is there is quite well defined. Pairing these up with a decent subwoofer delivers great audio in a very good looking package. The fact that they are easy to mount and paint is just the icing on the cake.