I WILL BE Honestly here, the Bluetooth speaker market is a mess. Everyone has one, everyone touts theirs as the best, you can get one for $10 or splurge on one for $1,500. So where do you go to buy one? Who do you trust in? A good bluetooth speaker is a companion, similar to a dog, that you don’t have to feed or walk, and it only plays music. So yes, it’s understandable that you feel the pressure to buy, but I’m here to make it really easy for you.
There is a bluetooth speaker that stands out among the others; it has the sound quality, fashion sense, and rugged power needed for any adventure. That speaker is marshall emberton ii. The second of the royal line from him, he is much more exquisite and refined than his brother from before him. Chances are you’ve heard of Marshall, or at least seen a speaker or two on the shelf in that artsy coffee shop. Now you can be that artistic shelf, wherever and whenever you want.
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The original Emberton I was a great speaker, but the II is almost perfect. It’s affordable, it sounds great, it looks great, and it’s one of the easiest to carry options I’ve used. The sound from this old-fashioned looking little beast is boomy, clear and has ruined a lot of other Bluetooth speakers for me. The audio is very clean, crisp, and my biggest gripe with the industry, it’s not very bass-heavy. This isn’t a muddy boom and instead lets you, you know, hear the music. The Embertone II is so sharp that podcasts are crystal clear, even while listening to it in the shower. My Emberton II has probably eaten enough steam from my head, from my unvented bathroom and my daily 45-minute shower, because I’m a ghoulish human, and it’s still in excellent shape. It’s loud enough for just about any space you want a Bluetooth speaker for, without sacrificing quality.
The art of matter
Marshall loudspeakers have always got one crucial thing right, and that is the art of the matter. The speakers look beautiful, so they are not only useful, but also serve as decoration. Leaving his mini amp-esk speaker on a shelf, until he wants to pick it up and go. The speaker looks and feels like a quality piece of technology. The Embertone II comes in two color combinations, Black and Gunmetal, and my personal favorite, creamgiving you that classic look perfect for any interior design style.
A nice power station
Lastly, the battery life. This thing must work without steam or foam, because I rarely have to charge it. Even when I do, it charges in no time. The speaker is rated to have over 30 hours of playback time, and I’ll tell you, I absolutely think so. In addition to its survivability, the Emberton is tough, and I mean tough. This thing has survived water, rain, dirt, mud, and more drops than I care to admit. Not a scratch, not a scratch, not a broken piece. Marshall has truly created something special, something that seems so fragile and yet is so powerful. Now, $170 isn’t cheap for a speaker as we know them, but for a speaker that looks as good and will last as long as this one, it’s close to highway robbery. It’s the last Bluetooth speaker you’ll ever need, until the Emberton III.
Photography by Timothy Mulcare. Prop styling by John Olson for Halley Resources.
Cameron Sherrill is a designer and writer for Esquire.com, where he covers technology and video games.