67

Sony SRS-XB12 Review

True Score

70
72
5

Experts

79
0

Consumers

Product Awards

GR Certified

Expert Rankings

Testers were delighted by the Sony SRS-XB12, and they recommended it for music, podcasts, and the outdoors. They loved its compact, waterproof construction, excellent battery life, and compatibility with smartphone voice assistants. However, they were disappointed that it doesn’t get very loud and has weak bass.

$39.93

We’re reader-supported. Commissions finance our mission. Our ‘True Score‘ system independently powers ratings. Learn more

Product Snapshot

Overview

The Sony SRS-XB12 is Sony’s 2019-model entry-level portable Bluetooth speaker that promises deep bass and excellent battery life for use on the go. It has a remarkably compact design and carrying strap, like select top speakers today. The speaker is equipped with Bluetooth 4.2 technology, featuring a 334.6-foot Bluetooth range. This speaker is waterproof and dust-proof, boasting an IP67-rated submersible design, and has an aux port. Read to the end of this Sony SRS-XB12 review and check out the best Bluetooth speakers on the market today.

Consensus

our Verdict

Analysts adored the Sony SRS-XB12 during their testing, recommending it for podcasts, music, and the outdoors. Testers at Reviews.org loved its 119.9Hz to 18.5KHz frequency response range and low 2.95 dB standard error. They reported a neutral sound profile with mediocre low bass. Experts at Which? lauded its excellent 0.97 dB directivity index, noticing an immersive soundstage, although the speaker downmixes stereo to mono and lacks an EQ. It weighs just 0.4 lbs and boasts an IP67-rated submersible waterproof, dust-proof design with a carrying strap. If you require a smaller device, see our Sony SRS-XB01 review. This speaker has a 70 ms iOS Bluetooth latency and 52 ms Android latency. It supports smartphone voice assistants and features an outstanding 13.3-hour battery life. Achieving a top SPL of 79.7 dB during tests, this device doesn’t get very loud but has a great 0.37 dB DRC, maintaining the sound quality even at the maximum volume.

Reason to Buy

  • Aux port
  • Smartphone-based voice assistants and speakerphone features
  • Submersible waterproof and dust-proof construction
  • Remarkably lightweight 0.4-lb design
  • Excellent 13.3-hour battery life

Reason to Avoid

  • Lacks multi-device Bluetooth pairing
  • Weak bass may not be suitable for movie enthusiasts
  • Lacks EQ
  • Doesn’t support stereo

Sony SRS-XB12 Specs

Battery LifeBattery Life16 hrs
Built In MicrophoneBuilt In MicrophoneYes
Charge TimeCharge Time4 hrs and 30 meters
SizeSize74 mm (d) x 92 mm (h)
Smart AppSmart AppYes
Speaker PairingSpeaker PairingYes
Water ResistantWater ResistantYes
WattageWattage10W
Wireless RangeWireless Range10 m

All Specs

Test Results

Min Frequency Response (Hz)119.9
Max Frequency Response (Hz)18,500
Battery Life (Hours)13.3
Volume Output (dB)79.7

Get the Winner of the Day Direct to Your Inbox

Product Comparison

Sony SRS-XB12 Review

True Score

70
60
68
81

Ranking

#

67

/

109

#

95

/

109

#

73

/

109

#

31

/

109

Market Context

The Sony SRS-XB12 is Sony’s 2019-model entry-level portable Bluetooth speaker that promises deep bass and excellent battery life for use on the go. It has…

The Sony SRS-XB12 is Sony’s 2019-model entry-level portable Bluetooth speaker that promises deep bass and excellent battery life for use on the go. It has a remarkably compact design and carrying strap, like select top speakers today. The speaker is equipped with Bluetooth 4.2 technology, featuring a 334.6-foot Bluetooth range. This speaker is waterproof and dust-proof, boasting an IP67-rated submersible design, and has an aux port. Read to the end of this Sony SRS-XB12 review and check out the best Bluetooth speakers on the market today.

The Sony SRS-XB13 produces lower bass than its predecessor, the Sony SRS-XB12 (this review). However, the XB12 gets louder, featuring a 79.7 dB maximum SPL,…

The Sony SRS-XB13 produces lower bass than its predecessor, the Sony SRS-XB12 (this review). However, the XB12 gets louder, featuring a 79.7 dB maximum SPL, which is better than the 78.4 dB maximum SPL of the Sony SRS-XB13. Read our Sony SRS-XB13 review for details about the newer model.

With an 84.9 dB maximum SPL, the Sony SRS-XB23 gets louder than the Sony SRS-XB12, which has a 79.7 dB maximum SPL. However, the 13.3-hour…

With an 84.9 dB maximum SPL, the Sony SRS-XB23 gets louder than the Sony SRS-XB12, which has a 79.7 dB maximum SPL. However, the 13.3-hour battery life of the SRS-XB12 portable speaker is better than the 9.2-hour battery life of the XB23. Check out our Sony SRS-XB23 review for details about the XB23 wireless speaker.

The Sony SRS-XB12 has a better 0.97 dB directivity index, translating to a more immersive soundstage than the JBL Flip 5, which has a 3.29…

The Sony SRS-XB12 has a better 0.97 dB directivity index, translating to a more immersive soundstage than the JBL Flip 5, which has a 3.29 dB directivity index. It also supports smartphone voice assistants, unlike the JBL portable speaker. However, the JBL device is louder, featuring an 85.5 dB maximum SPL, which beats the 79.7 dB maximum SPL of the Sony speaker.

Battery Life

16 hrs

16 hrs

12 hrs

12 hrs

Built In Microphone

Yes

Yes

Yes

No

Charge Time

4 hrs and 30 meters

4.5 hrs

4 hrs

2.5 hrs

Size

74 mm (d) x 92 mm (h)

3.75" (h) x 3" (w) x 3" (d)

Diameter: 76 mm (d) Height: 218 mm (h)

Smart App

Yes

Yes

Yes

JBL Portable

Speaker Pairing

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Water Resistant

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Wattage

10W

5-10W

20W

20W

Dig Deeper

Sony SRS-XB13 Review →

Sony SRS-XB23 Review →

JBL Flip 5 Review →

All Stores

Updated every 24 hours

  • $39.93

    Availability

    In Stock

    Free Shipping

    No

Score Card

E

Expert Score

72

*.75

We place a 75% weighted value on Expert Test Scores

C

Customer Score

79

*.25

We place a 25% weighted value on Customer Scores

True Score

70

Any product with a True Score above 60 is a Meh

Expert Score Breakdown

  • Rtings
    102.6

    Category Trust Score

    60
    The Sony SRS-XB12 packs a powerful punch for such a tiny speaker, and its waterproof… read more

    By:

    Georgia Dixon
  • PC Mag
    54.9

    Category Trust Score

    80
    The Sony SRS-XB12 is alright for outdoor use. It’s well-built, has a carrying strap to… read more

    By:

    Tim Gideon
  • Consumer Reports
    46.86

    Category Trust Score

    NR
    “No bottom line found for this product” read more

    By:

    Unknown
  • Reviews.org
    47.65

    Category Trust Score

    90
    This tough, pocket-sized speaker packs a powerful punch, and for less than $90. While the… read more

    By:

    John Panoryios
  • Choice
    44.5

    Category Trust Score

    NR
    “No bottom line found for this product” read more

    By:

    Unknown

Customer Score Breakdown

Learn More About Speakers


Speaker Reviews