The marvelous Bluetooth speakers of today can do a lot of things—connect to nearby Bluetooth-compatible devices with the touch of a button, produce crystal clear, high-fidelity audio in a variety of acoustic settings, and fit easily into most travel bags, just to name a few.
One thing that not all of them can do, however, is get wet and continue to function properly. No matter how amazing a particular speaker sounds, exposing it to excess moisture can sometimes be enough to put it out of order for good.
What about Bose’s popular SoundLink Mini? Is this best-selling compact sound system fluid-friendly or a voided warranty waiting to happen?
Is the Bose SoundLink Mini Waterproof?
Unfortunately, no. As durable and well-crafted as the SoundLink Mini (and its upgraded successor, the Mini II) is, it isn’t water-resistant to any degree, a fact which Bose clearly states in the product description on their website.
Getting one of these speakers wet is all but guaranteed to destroy it, so think hard about going with another product if you’re hoping to enjoy your tunes in the shower or by the pool.
Don’t Let a Lack of Water-Resistance Deter You
It would be foolish to write off the SoundLink Mini based on one admittedly large but ultimately overlookable design flaw.
While this particular entry in Bose’s Bluetooth-enabled lineup may not be waterproof, it routinely receives four and five-star reviews for a reason. Read on to learn more about the speaker’s many virtues, as well as how to protect it from moisture-related damage should you decide to pick one up for yourself.
The Case for the SoundLink Mini
Bose isn’t known for making hydrophilic speakers that can go anywhere the way companies like UE, Sonos, and JBL are. They are, however, known for producing some of the pound-for-pound best listening devices on the market, bar none.
What makes Bose speakers so exceptional? The company’s unwavering commitment to capturing the highest quality sound possible. You could say that the engineers at Bose have one-track minds, but their obsession has clearly paid off, as the brand is one of the most recognized and trusted vendors of audio electronics in the world.
The SoundLink Mini is the perfect distillation of Bose’s vision in many ways. Despite its diminutive size (the Mini II measures only 2.1” H x 7.1” W x 2.3” D), it packs a heavyweight wallop with thunderous bass, crisp high-end notes, and a robust midrange that ties the two extremes together organically.
Furthermore, the speaker is capable of playing at extremely high volumes without any noticeable deterioration in quality. That’s an impressive enough feature in its own right. Still, it should also make it hypothetically possible to listen to your favorite music or podcasts on a SoundLink Mini while you’re engaging in water-related activities.
All you would have to do would be to station the unit in an out-of-the-way area where it wouldn’t be at risk of coming into contact with errant spills, splashes, or sprays and crank the volume until it came through clearly at a distance. Problem solved.
What Happens When You Get a Bose SoundLink Mini Wet?
Generally speaking, the impact that water stands to have on any non-waterproof speaker is directly proportional to just how soaked it gets.
There most likely wouldn’t be disastrous consequences, for instance, if you were to accidentally slosh a few drops of your morning coffee out on the speaker or set it too close to the sink while you were doing dishes.
The aluminum casing—which covers four of the speaker’s six sides—would probably suffice to keep such small amounts of liquid from reaching the delicate electronic components inside. As long as the water didn’t get into any of the input ports or the sound holes themselves, it’s a reasonably safe bet that the device would be no worse for wear.
That might not be the case in the event of a full-on spill or submersion, though. In one of these scenarios, a flood of inpouring water would almost certainly short out the speaker, or at the very least, cause it to malfunction.
Examples of typical malfunctions include (but are not limited to) warped or muffled playback, a persistent crackling noise, loss of Bluetooth connectivity, or failure to charge or respond to manual input. It would be a shame to experience these sorts of issues with a speaker as universally acclaimed as the SoundLink Mini, so it’s best not to tempt fate.
Does the SoundLink Mini’s Warranty Cover Water Damage?
It’s worth noting that Bose’s standard warranty agreement doesn’t extend to damage incurred due to improper use or maintenance, nor does it hold for accidents. In other words, you wouldn’t be eligible for a free repair or replacement if you were to buy one of their speakers and then proceed to get it wet.
How to Safeguard Your SoundLink Mini From Water Damage
First and foremost, you’ll want to be extra careful anytime you’re using your SoundLink Mini around any kind of liquid.
Never place the speaker near an open body or container of water. This includes sinks, showers, toilets, and anywhere else that H20 flows freely. Your best bet is to set up your speaker in your bedroom, office, living room, or lounge area and not move it unless you’re taking it to an equally dry place.
I also recommend giving your speaker a wide berth whenever you’re drinking anything that might spill. All it takes is one unexpected slip to turn a top-of-the-line speaker into a $200 paperweight.
If you do happen to get a little water on your speaker, pat it dry immediately with a soft, absorbent towel, then move it someplace where it can get plenty of airflow. With any luck, the combination of quick reflexes and extensive air drying will prevent permanent damage.
Waterproof Alternatives to the Bose SoundLink Mini
Looking for a compact Bose Bluetooth speaker built for wet environments? You could do a lot worse than the SoundLink Micro or SoundLink Color II.
Both of these models are designed specifically to withstand exposure to modest quantities of water, and both sound almost as good as the SoundLink Mini. Even they can’t be completely immersed and still come out sounding the same, though.
The main takeaway here is that, in general, Bose speakers and water aren’t a great mix.