Listening to music doesn’t get better than this.

For years I looked for the perfect speakers. I wanted something that was small and portable, but also loud. Something with crystal clear sound, but also inexpensive and wireless. And I wanted something that was built to last frequent use at parties, at home, and even at the beach.

Then a friend recommended the UE BOOM 2 by Ultimate Ears. It has completely changed the way I listen to music. It's waterproof for up to 30 minutes, even when totally submerged, and is shockproof when dropped—perfect for my active lifestyle. It also connects wirelessly to Bluetooth from up to 100 feet away and has a 15-hour battery life. At around $150 it is not the cheapest Bluetooth speaker on the market, but is definitely worth it for its durability and exceptional sound. (You can also purchase the first generation UE BOOM at a slightly lower price point.)

One of my favorite features of the UE BOOM 2 is that you can download an app to your phone and control the speakers from afar—including volume, song choice, and even power. You can also use the app’s PartyUp feature to connect multiple people’s speakers (up to 150 at a time), so you can play the same music through all of them at once. My boyfriend also owns a UE BOOM 2, so we frequently use them together for twice the volume at parties. People with the Echo can also connect the speakers for hands-free voice control with Alexa.

The BOOM is incredibly lightweight and easy to carry (it’s just around 1 pound), too, so I can throw it in my backpack before heading to the park or the beach. Coincidentally, it’s about the size of a water bottle, so I can stick it in the water bottle holder on my bike, the side of my backpack, or any cup holder.

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