iHome IBN 6 Portable Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker with NFC Touch Pairing and USB Charging Review

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Updated July 5, 2022
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There’s a lot of Bluetooth envy going on when viewing one of the best Bluetooth speakers, the iHome’s IBN 6; it seems to have taken all the attributes touted by other speakers and assimilated them like the Borg. This heavy, obviously sturdy, and durable speaker does everything one could ask of an outdoor “portable” (too big for a pocket but a knapsack, sure), though we’re not sure it makes our best portable Bluetooth speaker list. Speaking of the best portable speaker, check out the Jawbone Big Jambox for another high-quality option. And it sounds good too. So we’re out and about, camping or hiking or taking a long walk and it’s time to stop and play some tunes. Here’s why this $119.99 BT speaker shines and why it may actually be one of the best Bluetooth speakers.

Large Size

Its large size means that the speakers — two front-firing 1.25” full-range drivers — are big enough to be heard above the normal, and not-so-normal sounds found outside. And there’s room for added refinements due to the chassis’ size, like improving the bass response through the addition of a rear-firing 2.25” passive radiator. Plus those speakers are stereo and, again due to the size of the iHome, there’s enough room to separate them for a better sound field. Our Jawbone Big Jambox review also showcases a much bigger Bluetooth speaker with fantastic sound.

Although, for smaller, portable speakers with big sound, read our JBL Flip 4 review and JBL Charge 4 review.

Unlike the Philips Fidelio SoundAvia AD7000W37, which uses an A/C adaptor, the iHome has a large battery — one that can last for up to 14 hours of playing (in the “Eco” mode). If the whole idea of being away from an AC outlet is to be taken in stride, having a speaker give up the ghost after 2-3 hours is a joke. You may want to go through our House Of Marley Bag Of Riddim Bluetooth Speaker review for better battery life.

Expects to Be Outdoors

The iHome expects to be used outdoors, so the weather resistance is taken to the top: IPX7 thanks to a rubberized housing. It’s just like the G-Project G-Drop speaker, which is also IPX7. The speaker construction also means being manhandled, dropped on dirt, etc.,  isn’t going to have it running home crying to its manufacturer either.

Added Tech

The iHome was made with some conveniences in mind: for example, NFC lets one-touch pairing work between the speaker and the Bluetooth-enabled phone or tablet (or sync with BT the old-fashioned way). Plus a USB port for charging other devices (that large battery means siphoning off juice won’t leave the speakers dead).

And since a smartphone is there, the speaker might as well have a speakerphone built-in for using Bluetooth for taking/making calls. So it does.

All of the above seems to say that this is the BT speaker you want to have when the call of the wild starts up, even if you’re not going any farther than the backyard.

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