Extreme Wallride full review
The Extreme Wallride wireless Bluetooth speaker is one of a range of Bluetooth speakers produced by Otone and designed by lifestyle brand EXTREME, and allows you to wirelessly play music from your smartphone or tablet. It comes in three variations and has been designed with the outdoors in mind. But how does the Extreme Wallride compare to others in its category? Take a look at our review and find out. Read next: The 20 best budget Bluetooth speakers to buy in the UK in 2016
Extreme Wallride Bluetooth speaker review: Design and build
The Extreme Wallride Bluetooth speaker was born out of a partnership between audio specialists Otone and popular action sports lifestyle brand EXTREME, and this is reflected in the design of the speaker. Firstly, the Wallride is available in three variations – artist, heritage and blackout, with the only real difference being the exterior design. The Blackout edition is, as you’d image, completely black, while the heritage edition is mainly black with purple accents and a skateboarding-esque design on the speaker grille.
However, the Artist edition is the most ‘out there’ of the three featuring a black body with a colourful, vivid graffiti design on the speaker grille. It’s the edition we were sent to review and while we understand it was made with extreme sports enthusiasts in mind, it’s a bit ‘much’ for our taste. The colours are bright and eye catching and the graffiti looks cool, but there’s a bit too much going on for our liking. Those looking for a sleek, understated Bluetooth speaker should opt for the Blackout edition.
The Wallride has a fairly robust, rectangular design and measures in at 217x45x118mm, making it a pretty portable Bluetooth speaker. Extreme claims that this makes it easier to pack into rucksacks or luggage, as it takes up a minimal amount of space. It also features grippy feet that allow the speaker to securely stand upright and provide extra stability, and a neoprene carry case to keep it in good condition when not in use.
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Extreme Wallride Bluetooth speaker review: Features and connectivity
So, what does the Extreme Wallride feature that makes it stand out from other similarly-priced Bluetooth speakers? For a starter, it offers Bluetooth (although we couldn’t find out which version) along with NFC for one-touch pairing, and a 3.5mm aux-in port for those with music players that don’t feature Bluetooth connectivity. We’ve found that, generally speaking, the Bluetooth range of the Wallride is decent with playback possible from 8-10 meters away from the speaker – although any further than that and it’ll start to jump. It’s also worth noting that this may vary depending on walls, etc.
The Wallride also features Nanofics patented hydrophobic coating. The coating provides a permanent hydrophobic (water repellent) layer on the circuit boards, which should, in theory, protect it if water was to get inside the speaker. The water repellent coat should allow water to ‘sit’ on top of the circuit board without damaging it, and should just roll off when held at an angle leaving the board completely dry. This doesn’t mean you should submerge the speaker in water and expect it to carry on working, but it provides peace of mind when using the speaker in extreme situations like when on the beach or ski slopes.
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Extreme Wallride Bluetooth speaker review: Audio
Let’s get down to the most important aspect of any Bluetooth speaker – audio. Firstly, we’ll mention that we generally saw a battery life of between 8 and 10 hours, although this depends on the volume of playback. One thing we did note almost instantly is that the Wallride has a separate audio control system, instead of syncing with the volume from the source. For example, we had to turn the speaker up physically as well as turning up the audio volume on our iPhone because, unlike with other speakers, it isn’t a single system. It makes the audio levels a bit harder to manage, but it’s only a minor point and one that shouldn’t stop you from investing.
The Wallride boasts 2x2in mid-high range drivers that together should produce an output of around 10W. We can definitely vouch that it’s loud enough to be used in social situations like trips to the beach, although we feel as if there has been a trade-off between maximum volume and audio quality. While it’s a very loud speaker, the audio quality isn’t as great as we’d have hoped from an £89.99 speaker. While we found that the mid-range was generally quite good, the highs were a little disappointing and the audio, in general, sounded a little flat.
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Extreme Wallride Bluetooth speaker review: Pricing and availability
So, where can you get your hands on an Extreme Wallride wireless Bluetooth speaker? The good news is that all three editions (Artist edition, Heritage edition and Blackout edition) are available to purchase directly from Amazon. While all three speakers have an RRP of £89.99, the speakers are slightly cheaper at £75-78 on Amazon at the time of writing.
Extreme Wallride: Specs
- Three designs
- Bluetooth & NFC connectivity
- 3.5mm aux-in
- Grippy feet for extra stability
- Nanofics hydrophobic coating
- 2x2in mid-high range drivers
- Total output: 2x5W
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