We know what you’re thinking…there are probably more Bluetooth speakers available in the market than the world’s population. And we do agree, there are a tonne of cheap speakers available out there, some costing less than an average lunch at a restaurant.
But if you have ears that work, you’d know that these speakers are pretty mediocre when it comes to blurting out your tunes. The Sony SRS XB-13 is the answer you may be looking for if you’re willing to cough up a tad bit extra for a better product than the rest.
Design and build
It’s really tiny and fits in the palm of your hand. The cylindrical shape and the minimalistic branding look great and the little punter resembles a coffee cup and is almost the same size as one. It also comes with a strap and a hook that’s large enough to hang it around your bag or any other handle.
The XB-13 comes with an IP67 rating which makes it dust and water-proof. You can easily take it to the pool side without worrying about it wanting to go for a swim. It also allows you to answer calls and brings up your phone’s assistant with a press of a button.
Pairing the XB-13 is a standard process and happens in seconds. We expected the output to emphasize the lower frequencies and weren't disappointed with our expectations. The XB in the name stands for ‘Extra Bass’ afterall, and there’s a dollop of low end rumble this little punter.
But to extract that low end oomph, we really had to turn up the speaker to max. A lower volume level reveals a great amount of emphasis in the mid range as we found out while listening to Tennis Court by Lorde. Move to something a tad more complex like Those Lies by Boz Scaggs, and while the piercing vocals are flawless, the complex soundstage proves a bit too much for the tiny speaker, enveloping one instrument over the other leaving us wanting a bit more definition and nuance.
But we might be expecting a bit too much for the money and size. At ₹3,990, it offers much more than the average off the shelf speaker available out there in terms of a crisp mid range and rumbling low end provided you max out the volume. Add to that a 16-hour play time, and there’s really not much for us to complain about.
The Sony SRS XB-13 is a great step up from run-of-the-mill Bluetooth speakers out there. It’s tiny dimensions make it really easy to lug around and the fact that it is waterproof and dustproof adds to the already bassy cake. This can be a great travel speaker to take on camping trips and picnics.