What makes a Bluetooth Speaker great? – Part One

Yup, you’ve decided you need a portable Bluetooth Speaker. Good choice! Except that when you are browsing different options, everything has so many different specifications and numbers, it’s super hard to quantify what the important things are. If you’re confused by all of the technical jargon when it comes to audio specifications, we’re here to help you out!Volkano Barrel Series Bluetooth Speaker

In this article, we are going to cover:

  • Bluetooth Versions
  • Output Power
  • Bass
  • Special Features

Bluetooth Version

Bluetooth is just the way that your phone or device connects to the Bluetooth Speaker, and allows you to stream music from your device directly to the speaker. But what is the version number all about?

Without going into too much detail, here are the numbers you should be looking for.


This makes connecting your device and the speaker much simpler than it used to be, and should be the minimum specification to consider.


This is the version you need to look for that improves battery life between both your device and your portable speaker.


The latest version of Bluetooth technology increases the range between your devices, typically from 10m up to about 40m, but both devices need to support Bluetooth 5 for this to work. This also can make devices and speakers more expensive. If the range is not a concern and your streaming device doesn’t support this version, you really don’t need this.

Volkano Rocket Superior Sound QualityOur Volkano Rocket Wireless Portable Bluetooth Speaker is equipped with Version 4.2; giving you the best of both worlds – super easy pairing, and better battery life for your devices.  Remember to always check that you have the most up-to-date drivers from the manufacturer’s website if you are streaming from your computer; it’s common that Bluetooth drivers aren’t updated in regular OS updates, which could affect your connectivity.

Output Power

This is all about the guts. It’s an indication of how powerful a speaker is in terms of sound volume when it is being amplified. This is measured in Watts (W).

Volkano DroidIf you need something that really fills up a hall, you would want the highest rated wattage that you could find. Probably something like our Volkano Droid at a massive 42 Watts! If you just need a sound companion, either at work, your home, or small party gatherings, 8 Watts is probably more than enough.

Bear in mind that higher wattages can have an impact on portability (larger speaker size) and battery life (more power required).

The Volkano Rocket features two 8 Watt speakers, loud enough to impress, yet great at any volume – in a surprisingly small and very portable package.


It’s the boom! The thing that shakes windows if it’s too loud; those deep drum kicks, those bass synth lines; arguably the soul of any track that gets your fingers and feet tapping. Some speakers include a dedicated subwoofer, a fancy term for a speaker designed to pump out those very low tones. If you like your music deep and bassy, this is something you should be looking for.

How a Passive Bass Radiator works

However, there is another option: some Bluetooth speakers come with Passive Bass Radiators. These work by using air pressure from the internal speakers to radiate a special cone design, generating extra bass The advantages of this design are that it is normally cheaper than a dedicated subwoofer unit, but still gives you that important bass boost.

The Volkano Rocket features dual passive bass radiators for a richer bass experience without hurting your wallet.


Special Features

Another consideration when choosing a Bluetooth speaker is its special features All Bluetooth speakers can stream from your phone or PC, but the extra features may prove to be a deciding factor. Some extras include:


FM Radio

FM Radio.  This is something that a lot of Bluetooth speakers don’t come with, and is especially great when you might be tired of listening to your own music.


MicroSD Card

USB and MicroSD Card Support. Instead of streaming all of your tunes, store them on a memory card or USB drive, plug it straight into the speaker, and you are good to go!


Graphic Equaliser

EQ Modes. Definitely a feature that most bluetooth speakers overlook! An equalizer lets you increase the bass tones, or reduce them and increase the treble. This helps you get exactly the right tone for your specific listening preferences.


Aux Cable

Aux Input. This allows you to connect an external input directly to the speakers so that you are able to listen to wired sources. A great example of this is to connect your TV to Bluetooth speaker as a speaker bar if the output on your TV isn’t so great.


The Volkano Rocket has all of these value added features, all wrapped up in a portable and sleek design. Check it out!

Make sure to read part two of our article on what makes a bluetooth speaker great. We will cover more technical terms such as signal to noise ratio, distortion, frequency response, and battery life.