As far as loud Bluetooth speakers are concerned, the Turtlebox 2nd Generation model and Soundboks Go are two names you can’t leave out of the conversation. Making regular appearances on our best lists for their volume capabilities, ruggedness, and sound quality, these two speakers are undoubtedly some of the best on the portable Bluetooth speaker market.
While the two speakers are similar in the volumes they can produce, which are practically unreachable by other Bluetooth speakers that are currently available, they are significantly different from one another in a number of ways, and which one is best for you will depend greatly on how you intend to use it, what kind of connectivity you’re looking for, and the aesthetic of the speaker you’re after.
If you’re simply looking to find out which speaker is louder, the Soundboks Go measured 121dB output, while the Turtlebox Gen 2 can handle up to 120dB. This shootout will be focusing more on the design, portability, sound quality, and additional features of these speakers.
Size and Portability
Soundboks Go: 18 x 12 x 10 inches. 20lbs.
Turtlebox Gen 2: 11.5 x 6.5 x 8.75 inches. 9.88 lbs.
Right off the bat, the two speakers share a similar design style geared towards outdoor usage, though these Bluetooth speakers still sound great indoors.
As for the size and weight of these speakers, the Turtlebox isn’t small but isn’t awkwardly large either, however, it can become heavy if you’re carrying it over a long distance. The Soundboks Go is a few inches larger than the Turtlebox, but is almost double the weight, severely impacting how portable it can be considered.
The Soundboks Go, being a portable version of the original Soundboks Bluetooth speaker, comes with an attachable carry strap. However, I found that this doesn’t help much in relieving strain from your back, shoulder, and arm when carrying the speaker but rather transfers the pressure to one specific point. The Turtlebox doesn’t come with a carry strap, but again, it is almost half the weight of the Soundboks Go, so it is manageable. The integrated carry handles on the speakers are both high-quality, but I feel the Turtlebox’s handle is more comfortable to hold.
Best Portability: Turtlebox Gen 2
While it doesn’t come with a carry strap like the Soundboks Go, the Turtlebox is slightly smaller with a more comfortable carry handle and is nearly half the weight.
Soundboks Go: IP65
Turtlebox Gen 2: IP67
Both the Soundboks Go and Turtlebox Bluetooth speakers are protected by a high level of weather resistance, with the Soundboks Go holding an IP65 rating and the Turtlebox an IP67. This means that the Soundboks Go won’t be bothered by contact with liquids from any angle, but the Turtlebox can handle higher-pressure sprays or a short submersion time. Both speakers can effectively resist dust, sand, and other solid materials. As for the actual build quality, both speakers are made from high-quality materials all-round, capable of surviving an unexpected drop, knock, or kick.
Best Durability: Turtlebox Gen 2
Both speakers are incredibly well-built, but the Turtlebox is slightly stronger when it comes to water resistance; however, in most scenarios, the Soundboks Go is tough enough; it all depends on how and where you’ll be using the speaker.
Design, feel, and features
When it comes to actually use these speakers, both are pretty straightforward since they exclude the LED lights effects, karaoke modes, and other party-based features commonly seen in these speakers’ competitors. Instead, the Turtlebox and Soundboks Go are solid, good-sounding, and easy to operate.
The control panels are found on top of the speaker in both cases, where the speaker’s basic functions can be controlled. Both panels are well-protected from the elements, and the buttons, switches, and ports all feel well-made with high-grade components.
The Soundboks Go has a companion app on both iOS and Android that lets you initiate wireless pairings, perform firmware upgrades, and more. While it isn’t super interactive, it’s nice to have the option of remote controllability.
Best Design: Soundboks Go
While the design and feel of these speakers are mostly fairly similar, and which one you pick is ultimately dependent on personal factors, the companion app that comes with the Soundboks Go makes it a little more advanced than the Turtlebox.
So, we already know that the Soundboks Go can hit one unit higher on the Decibel scale, but how do they compare in terms of tonal qualities?
The Turtlebox is a well-balanced speaker, with loads of meaty low-end, full-bodied midrange, and crisp highs. At lower volumes, the Turtlebox can sound a bit muddy, and the bass can be slightly overpowering on some tracks, but overall, you’ll enjoy this speaker with practically any music style. When pushed to the limit volume-wise, the Turtlebox doesn’t expose any holes in the sonic balance and doesn’t become overly compressed.
The Soundboks go is a little more natural in terms of its sound signature, where elements of the frequency spectrum aren’t as enhanced as they are on the Turtlebox Gen 2. The Soundboks Go allows for custom equalization, though, where you can boost the low-end, for example, to your liking. As someone who tends to listen more critically, the Soundboks Go would be my speaker of choice here.
Best Sound Quality: Soundboks Go
These are both extremely loud Bluetooth speakers that can easily compete with each other in terms of volume, but The Soundboks Go not only gets a touch louder than the Turtlebox, but its tonal signature is more evenly spaced, with the ability to customize the sonic qualities of the speaker.
Soundboks Go: Around 40 hours, +- 10 hours on full volume
Turtlebox Gen 2: Around 25 hours, +- 6 hours on full volume
I’ll start by saying that both speakers carry impressive, energy-efficient batteries.
Whether you’re playing music at lower listening levels or pumping the speaker at full volume for a house party, the Soundboks Go’s battery life is stronger either way. The Soundboks Go also supports Soundboks’ Batteryboks removable batteries if the 6-hour playtime isn’t enough or if you’ll be away from AC power for a while.
Best Battery: Soundboks Go
Capable of running for around 40 hours at lower volumes and 10 hours at max volume, plus the option for switching batteries if the current cell has depleted, the Soundboks Go heavily outranks the Turtlebox’s 25 hours of playtime and 6 hours max volume potential.
So, which speaker is best for me?
The Turtlebox Gen 2 and Soundboks Go outrank each other in different spheres, and which speaker is better suited for you is greatly dependent on how and where you plan on using the Bluetooth speaker.
Party hosts & entertainers, get the Soundboks Go
The Soundboks Go is a touch louder than the Turtlebox, and its sound signature can be crafted to suit your environment/surroundings and music taste. The battery life of the Soundboks Go is also significantly stronger than the Turtlebox, and the option of switchable battery packs means you can get loads of playtime from the speaker. The Soundboks Go can also be paired with an original Soundboks Bluetooth speaker for a more immersive party experience.
Outdoor enthusiasts, get the Turtlebox Gen 2
The Turtlebox is better suited for outdoor environments, with an IP67 weather-resistance rating making it suitable for beach-goers, hunters, and campers in the woods, sand, snow, or dust. The rugged design of the Turtlebox also means it can take a bit of a beating, and the hooks on either side of the speaker allow for it to be easily strapped down to a truck, snowmobile, four-wheeler, or boat. The Turtlebox is also considerably lighter and smaller than the Soundboks Go.
Music lovers, get the Soundboks Go
While the sound quality of both speakers is nothing short of excellent, the Soundboks Go’s tweakable sound signature adds greater versatility for all music tastes, where you can fine-tune the speaker’s frequency response to suit your listening material or surroundings, both indoor and outside.