When it comes to frequencies, the Bose SoundLink Mini shines the most at the higher end of the spectrum. Highs were very clear and bright, without any of the high frequency rolloff that I’ve noticed on other, cheaper Bluetooth speakers. The midrange was also very well represented. How important this is depends on the kind of music, but for guitar-heavy rock music, or really anything that uses guitar or piano, this is very nice. Despite the booming sound, vocals never seemed buried.
When it comes to bass, the Bose SoundLink Mini has its advantages and disadvantages. First, we’ll start with the good. Unlike some Bluetooth speakers, this speaker doesn’t rely on being set on a table or other surface to produce its bass. You can hold the Bose above your head and it’s just as bass-heavy as when it’s sitting on your desk. On the bad side, it suffers from the same problem all Bluetooth speakers suffer from: it’s hard to decently reproduce bass in such a small speaker.
If you don’t want to use Bluetooth, the Bose also has a 1/8″ auxiliary jack on just about the DC jack on the right side, allowing you to plug your phone or any other device in directly. Interesting enough, the SoundLink Mini also has a USB jack on the bottom. At first I wondered why this was there, but this allows the firmware to be updated to support new Bluetooth specs and features down the road.