Having previously reviewed the fantastic Ultimate Ears Megablast I have recently been reviewing the more affordable Braven Read Pro Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker.
At the time of writing there does not appear to be any UK availability but it is $149.99 direct from Braven and on Amazon. Braven does have listings on Amazon but this specific model does not appear to be available, the closest I can find is the Braven BRV-Pro priced at £129.23.
The Ready Pro is IP68 waterproof making it entirely resistant to dust and dirt while being resistant to submersion up to a maximum depth of 1.5m underwater for up to thirty minutes. The 2600mAh battery is rated for 14 hours of play, and it comes supplied with an action mount, compatible with most of GoPro’s existing ecosystem, so you’re always ready to ride when adventure calls.
The Ready Pro also features a noise-cancelling speakerphone that makes crystal-clear calls, supporting complete use of voice control from Siri, Google Voice or other assistants.
The speaker also includes a USB output port which allows you to charge your phone if you run out of batter.
Similar to many of the Ultimate Ears speakers, you can download an app and then pair this speaker with another Ready Pro speaker, providing a powerful stereo sound.
Design and Build
The model I was sent is all black and comes supplied with a hard-shell see-through plastic case which looks impressive.
The speaker itself has a very rugged look and is less stylish than the UE Megablast, but is has more portable proportions, and a more thoughtful layout.
Unlike the Megablast the charging port is mounted on the back of the speaker, accessed via a thick rubber back panel. Here you will find a battery indicator, Aux In, and the USB output.
There is a curious mounting plate on the bottom of the speaker, and at first, I thought it would be impossible to stand it the correct way up, but the included hex key allows you to remove this plate. The plate serves a purpose though and is compatible with GoPro accessories, allowing you to mount the speaker using various methods.
You also get a nylon strap allowing you to tie the speaker down or mount it in ingenious ways. Around the speaker there are 4 points allowing you to thread the straps trough, creating multiple options.
The overall build quality feels more rugged than the Ultimate Ears Megablast. This speaker should easily handle any tumble or drop so is perfect for travelling.
A speaker is only as good as the sound it produces, and the Braven performs admirably.
This speaker is physically smaller than the UE Magablast the overall audio quality isn’t quite as good. It doesn’t have quite the room filling presence or the base of the Megablast, but the overall audio quality is very good for its size. I used it in my kitchen during the review period, and it comfortably fills the room with a warm, vibrant sound.
Vocals, mids and trebles all perform very well, and there was no noticeable distortion or tinniness.
This has a have a dedicated downward-firing radiator at the base and produces a decent level of bass for its size. While it can’t compete with the large Megablast I would say the bass does well, in particular during bassy tracks, a small speaker might typically suffer from distortion but keeping this at a reasonable volume I could not perceive any audio issue.
The overall audio quality isn’t that far off the popular Sonos 1 which is the main speaker in my kitchen.
The Braven Ready Pro is an excellent speaker; its rugged nature makes it ideal for outdoor use or travelling. It would make a perfect festival speaker where you know it will just get knocked around all the time.
The speaker also performs well in the home, the battery life is good, and it would make an excellent kitchen or bathroom speaker.
The price of a speaker also dictates how good the overall impression is, and there is no UK pricing that I can see. For comparison, the Braven BRV-XXL costs £306 on Amazon and $300 on the main US site so we can assume it would be a $/£ parity for the Ready Pro which would make it £149.99.
Assuming this price is correct this places it cheaper than the Megablast RRP of £270 and would make this a well-priced rugged Bluetooth speaker.
Braven Ready Pro Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker
Product Name: Braven Ready Pro Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker