Music By Magpie • How to choose a Bluetooth speaker

April 19, 2017
Music by Magpie • Bluetooth speaker

Bluetooth, a concept that until recently was a bit of a myth is everywhere these days, and is proving to be an extremely popular way of listening to music.

A Bluetooth speaker is a gadget that is portable and convenient and ideal for bringing music to more remote locations like the beach, camping trips or even your patio or back yard for a braai, all you need is a #smart device with music on it.

Once you’ve decided that you absolutely need a Bluetooth Speaker, you’ll be confronted with hundreds of options.  After getting my very own little Marley Chant Mini from my brother for Christmas, my DoD (Dear Old Dad) decided that he too needed a Bluetooth Speaker, but a bigger one with more “woema”, so naturally I was tasked with researching his options and setting him up.

7 Tips to consider …. Aka #howto choose a Bluetooth speaker

  1. Budget/Price – The wide variety of speakers available range from as little as R150 to R10 000 and upwards even, what you are prepared to spend will go a long way to limiting your options.
  2. Size/Portability
  3. Battery life/ playback time – Typically the cheaper options have less playback time, and some even have to be plugged in constantly.
  4. Ease of use
  5. Sound Quality
  6. Aesthetics/Look
  7. Add on’s (e.g. Speaker phone option / Aux input / USB input)

Music By Magpie • How to choose a bluetooth speaker

Tried and tested, here are my recommendations:

Marley Chant Mini

Price – R 699

I have one of these, and let me tell you this cute looking little guy ticks most of the boxes. The Marley chant mini is made from recycled materials and is available in a number of hemp and bamboo colour options with a nifty hook so you can hang it up almost anywhere. It even has an auxiliary input and speaker phone capability and an impressive 6hr playback.

Music by Magpie • Marley Chant Mini

Harman Kardon

Price – R2500 to R8500

The modern and stylish Harman Kardon range has something for everyone, the most popular is the mid range HK go (+- R4500) and the newer ONYX not only looks stunning it has really amazing bass capability, something lacking in many other Bluetooth speakers.

Although the pricing here is a bit higher, HK ticks all the boxes, you can’t go wrong with one of the many HK Bluetooth speakers.

Music by Magpie • Harman Kardon


Price – R4500 to R8500

Marshall is definitely the coolest name in the Bluetooth Speaker universe, why you make ask? Obviously because Marshall is so Rock and Roll and synonymous with speakers and amps in general.

The old school look of these devices is what had me hooked from the start, available in cream or the look has remained true to the original Marshall Speaker design (but smaller and prettier).

The only con is that the sound quality of the smaller options, but the more expensive Marshall Woburn is good looking, has awesome sound quality and is on my wishlist for sure.

Music by Magpie • Marshall speaker

Marley Get Together

Price  – R3500 for the Get Together and only R2500 for the Mini

For my DoD we decided on the Marley Get Together which is really easy to set up and use, has a 9hr playback time, Aux and USB capability and very impressive sound quality equal to many other pricier speakers.

He liked the recycled Bamboo and denim look which has paired well with the antique oak fireplace in our family home where it’s most often resident,  so even my Mom likes it 🙂

Music by Magpie • Marley Get Together

All in all there is no right or wrong choice, but some choices are always #smarter than others, happy shopping!


Written by Margaret Whitfield • DJ Magpie • our in-house Music Maven

dj magpie

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