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Klipsch vs Bose (2021): Which Bluetooth Portable Speaker is the Smarter Purchase?

Whether you’re hosting a party indoors or having a barbecue by the beach, having great music will improve the ambiance and liven up your gathering. If you’re thinking of getting a speaker, our comparison of the best-selling Bluetooth portable speakers from two audio industry mainstays, Klipsch and Bose, will help you decide.

Klipsch vs Bose Portable Bluetooth Speakers Comparison Chart

ModelKlipsch Groove Portable Bluetooth SpeakerBose SoundLink Color Bluetooth Speaker II
Klipsch GrooveBose SoundLink Color Portable Speaker
PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
Dimensions (HxWxD)4.56” x 5.51” x 2.65”5.25″ x 5″ x 2.25″
Weight1.7 lbs1.2 lbs
FinishSiliconeSilicone
Wireless RangeUp to 30 ft (9 m)Up to 30 ft (9 m)
Battery LifeUp to 8 hoursUp to 8 hours
Maximum Acoustic Output97dB at 0.5mUnspecified
InputBluetooth, 3.55 mm analog inputBluetooth, 3.5 mm auxiliary input
Smart AssistantNoYes
Sweat and Water Resistant (IPX4)YesYes
Built-in MicrophoneNoYes
Color OptionsBlackAquatic Blue
Polar White
Soft Black
Yellow Citrus
Midnight Blue
Coral Red

Design

The Bose portable speakers are lighter, sleeker, and have more vibrant colors.

The Klipsch Groove (left) only comes in black

A household name in the speaker industry, Klipsch’s priority lies in its sound quality more than updating its design, as evident in the Groove. The Bose SoundLink Color is a complete 180 of Klipsch’s outdated aesthetics. This Bose portable speaker is sleek, light, and sport more modern aesthetics in an array of vibrant colors. An upside for the Klipsch Groove’s design though is it can be used upright or laid down for better sound.

With only a .5-lbs difference, the Bose SoundLink is lighter than the Klipsch Groove. Both portable speakers are lightweight, but the Bose is easier to carry as it’s slimmer than the Groove.

Sound Performance

Even from afar, both Bluetooth portable speakers deliver clear sound and have a decent range

For its price, the Klipsch Groove portable speakers pack crisp, clear sound with deep bass and good tonal quality. However, even with its speaker grille on three of its side panels, the Klipsch still needs to be angled towards the people listening for optimal sound. For better treble, use your Klipsch portable speakers laid down instead of upright.

Just like the Klipsch, the Bose SoundLink Color delivers excellent bass and clear mids and highs, with its treble slightly better than the Groove’s. For a Bluetooth speaker this size, it offers great sound quality. Both the Klipsch and Bose portable speakers have a wireless range of up to 30 ft (about the length of a London bus) and they do not distort sound even when played at full volume.

Set-Up and Controls

Both feature physical and wireless controls, but the Bose can also be used with its app

For better sound, you can connect the Bose (right) with other Bluetooth speakers through its app

The Klipsch Groove and Bose SoundLink Color pair seamlessly with your device via Bluetooth. You can also use the Bose Connect App to manage your devices, but it is optional. Its Bose Connect lets you use Party Mode so you can pair two SoundLink speakers at once for a fuller sound. Pairing your Bose with a smart assistant is also possible as it is equipped with a mic, unlike the Klipsch.

These Bluetooth speakers have controls on the top that are smooth but are not illuminated. They are hard, if not impossible, to see in the dark since you cannot feel them. If you like using your portable speaker in your car, changing tracks or adjusting the volume when you’re driving at night can be a problem. Otherwise, they work well and are responsive to the touch. The Bose’s multifunction button can be confusing for some though so make sure to read the manual for further control instructions.

Additional Features

Both Bluetooth portable speakers are splash-resistant and have a decent battery life

With an IPX4 water-resistant rating, both the Klipsch Groove and Bose SoundLink Color can withstand splashes from every direction. You can fire up either Bluetooth portable speaker by the pool or listen to music while in the shower without problems. Just don’t submerge them as they’re only water-resistant and not completely waterproof.

Both speakers can play music at a moderate volume for up to 8 hours. If you play music at the highest volume though, expect shorter playtime. As for the Bose, many users complain about issues on recharging when its battery gets drained. If this happens, some troubleshooting options include doing a factory reset and/or plugging your speaker to your computer to do a reboot.

Verdict

As they have similar features, the no-frills Klipsch offers better value for your money

Both Bluetooth portable speakers provide amazing quality for their size and price range. If you don’t mind the classic, boxy design and the lack of app connectivity and mic for voice controls, go for the Klipsch Groove. As for the Bose SoundLink Color II, what you’ll get for the price difference is a sleeker, lighter design, more fun color options, smart assistant compatibility, and capability to sync with another speaker through its app. As for where it matters–sound quality, Bluetooth connectivity, and portability–both are about the same.

You can read more Bose headphones and speaker reviews and comparison charts here.

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Rhodaline Escala-Phelps

Managing Editor and Team Leader at Compare Before Buying. Writer and researcher passionate about people, product comparisons, culture, and current events.