Theater Solutions B83GR Speaker Review

Tested using Methodology v0.8
Reviewed Mar 26, 2021 at 09:18 am
Theater Solutions B83GR Picture
4.9
Music
4.7
Videos/Movies
6.0
Podcasts
2.3
Voice Assistant
5.5
Outdoors
Bluetooth
Yes
Wi-Fi
No
Speakerphone
No
Voice Assistant
No
Battery Powered
Yes

The Theater Solutions B83GR is a rock-shaped, wireless Bluetooth speaker designed to blend with your outdoor decor. It's weatherproof against rain, snow, ice, salt, and pool chemicals, though there's no specified IP rating, and we don't currently test for this. You can even link it to up to 99 other B83GR speakers, which is handy if you have a large outdoor space. Unfortunately, its uneven sound profile has an overemphasized high-bass that can make your audio sound boomy, and an overemphasized treble that can make vocals and sibilants honky and piercing.

Our Verdict

4.9 Music

The Theater Solutions B83GR performs poorly for music. It has an uneven sound profile. Its overemphasized high-bass can add a boomy quality to your audio, while its overemphasized treble makes sibilants like S and T sound honky and harsh. Like most small speakers, since it struggles to reproduce low bass, you may not hear the thump and punch in bass-heavy music like hip-hop or EDM. It also has to downmix stereo content into mono to play it, which isn't as immersive-sounding. That said, it can get fairly loud.

Pros
  • Not a lot of compression at max volume.
Cons
  • Struggles to reproduce low-bass.
  • Poor soundstage performance.
  • Disappointing directivity.
4.7 Videos/Movies

The Theater Solutions B83GR is bad for movies. Its lack of low-bass can make it difficult to feel the deep thump and rumble in action-packed movies, while its boomy high-bass can muddy dialogue and push it towards the back of the mix. Due to the overemphasized treble, dialogue can also sound honky and harsh at times. It also has a poor soundstage performance, so you don't feel very immersed in your audio. Even so, it has low Bluetooth latency with iOS and Android devices, though some apps compensate for latency differently, and your experience may vary.

Pros
  • Not a lot of compression at max volume.
  • Low latency via Bluetooth.
Cons
  • Struggles to reproduce low-bass.
  • Poor soundstage performance.
  • Disappointing directivity.
6.0 Podcasts

The Theater Solutions B83GR is not bad for podcasts. The speaker is portable, can get fairly loud, and has little compression artifacts at max volume which can help keep your audio sounding clean. That said, it has disappointing directivity which can result in a narrow and directional soundstage, so your audio may not sound as clear from all angles.

Pros
  • Not a lot of compression at max volume.
  • Decently portable.
Cons
  • Disappointing battery performance.
  • Disappointing directivity.
2.3 Voice Assistant

The Theater Solutions B83GR doesn't have a microphone and doesn't support voice assistants.

5.5 Outdoors

The Theater Solutions B83GR is disappointing for outdoor use. Its battery performance is disappointing and can only last over six hours. It also has a poor soundstage performance, which can feel inadequate if you really like to feel immersed in your audio. That said, it's adequately built. It's advertised as weatherproof against rain, snow, ice, salt, and pool chemicals, though we don't test for this. Its rock-like design also allows it to blend well with most outdoor landscapes, and it can get fairly loud.

Pros
  • Large Bluetooth range.
  • Adequate build quality.
Cons
  • Disappointing battery performance.
  • Poor soundstage performance.
  • Disappointing directivity.
  • 4.9 Music
  • 4.7 Videos/Movies
  • 6.0 Podcasts
  • 2.3 Voice Assistant
  • 5.5 Outdoors

Check Price

Granite Grey B81GG
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com
Sandstone Brown B82GS
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Amazon.com
Slate Grey B83GR
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
Design
Style
RGB Lights No

The Theater Solutions B83GR is a speaker designed to look like a rock so it can blend in with your outdoor decor. Its protective front metal grille blends well with the rest of it. We tested the 'Slate Grey' color variant, but you can also find it in 'Sandstone Brown' and 'Granite Grey'.

7.3
Design
Portability
Volume
1240 in³ (20314 cm³)
Weight
6.2 lbs (2.8 kg)
Power Source
Battery & USB
One-Hand Carry
No

The Theater Solutions B83GR is decently portable. It's a bit large and doesn't have any handles, so you can't easily carry it with one hand. However, it's battery-powered, so you can bring it outside without having to plug it into an outlet.

6.6
Design
Build Quality
Material Quality
Decent
Water Resistance
Water-resistant (IPx rating unspecified)
Dust Resistance
Unspecified
Impact Resistance
Unspecified
Floats In Water
Unspecified

It has an adequate build quality. The manufacturer claims it's composed of multilayer composite cabinets made with hi-tech resin. Underneath it, there's a small cover protecting the charging port. Though there's no specified IP rating and we don't currently test for this, it's advertised as weatherproof against rain, snow, ice, salt, and pool chemicals. However, the manufacturer warns against submerging it in water.

3.6
Design
Controls
Ease Of Use
Decent
Feedback
Good
Music Play/Pause
No
Call Answer/End
No
Volume Up/Down
No
Track Next/Previous
No
Microphone On/Off
No
Additional Controls
No

The controls are poor, as it only has a power button, which you can press and hold to turn it on and off. You can also quickly double-press it to connect up to 99 additional Theater Solutions B83GR speakers. Unfortunately, there are no additional buttons to help you skip tracks or adjust the volume. That said, it has a light indicator underneath it that turns blue when it's on, red while it's charging, and off when it's fully charged. It also plays a sound when it's turned on and off, when it's connected to a mobile device, and it beeps once it's connected to other variants. If you're looking for outdoor speakers with more physical control buttons, consider the Pohopa EF-B210G lantern speakers instead.

Design
In The Box

  • Theater Solutions B83GR speaker
  • DC to USB-A charging cable
  • User manual

Sound
4.7
Sound
Frequency Response Accuracy
Slope
0.16
Std. Err.
5.63 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
116.5 Hz
High-Frequency Extension
10.5 kHz

The Theater Solutions B83GR has poor frequency response accuracy. It has a pretty uneven sound profile, with an overemphasized high-bass that can make your audio sound boomy and muddy while pushing vocals and lead instruments towards the back of the mix. The overemphasized treble range can also make vocals, lead instruments, and sibilants like cymbals honky, harsh, and even piercing. That said, like most small speakers, it also struggles to reproduce low-bass which would normally add deep thump and rumble to your audio. Unfortunately, there aren't any sound customization features available to help you tweak its sound more to your liking.

Sound
Raw Frequency Response
Binaural Recording @ 1m
Binaural Recording @ 2m
4.4
Sound
Soundstage
Directivity Index
6.70 dB
Stereo
No (mono)

This speaker has a poor soundstage performance. It has to downmix stereo content to mono to play it, which doesn't make your audio sound very immersive. Its directivity is also disappointing, so your audio may not sound clear from all angles.

7.3
Sound
Dynamics
SPL @ Max Volume
87.9 dB SPL
DRC @ Max Volume
1.25 dB

This speaker has a decent dynamics performance. It doesn't get very loud, so it isn't really suitable for listening to music at parties. Fortunately, there isn't a lot of compression when you play it at max volume.

Active Features
5.3
Active Features
Battery
Battery Life
6.5 hrs
Charge Time
6.3 hrs
Power Saving
Yes
Charging Port
DC

This speaker has a disappointing battery performance. Though it's advertised to last for five and a half hours off of a single charge, it lasted over six hours in our tests. However, battery life can vary according to usage, so your experience may vary. That said, it also has a power-saving feature that shuts it off automatically if it isn't used for about 15 minutes. It's also important to note that though the manufacturer advertises that it comes with a micro USB to USB charging cable, we received a DC to USB-A cable instead.

0
Active Features
Voice Assistant
Alexa
No
Google Assistant
No
Siri
No
Voice Activation
No
Microphone Mute
No Microphone
Far-Field Performance
No Microphone
Ambient Noise Performance
No Microphone
0
Active Features
App
App Name
No App
iOS
No
Android
No
EQ
No
Stereo Pair Mode
No
Party Mode
No
Multi-Room
No

It doesn't have a companion app. That said, you can connect it to up to 99 additional Theater Solutions B83GR speakers by double-pressing the power button on each unit, though we didn't test this.

Connectivity
Connectivity
Wired
Aux Input
No
USB Audio
No
Other Ports
No

This speaker doesn't have any wired inputs. However, it does come with one DC to USB-A cable to charge it with.

7.6
Connectivity
Bluetooth
Bluetooth Version
Unspecified
Bluetooth iOS Latency
126 ms
Bluetooth Android Latency
102 ms
Bluetooth Range
229.7 ft (70.0 m)
Multi-Device Pairing
No

This speaker's Bluetooth connectivity is very good. It has a fantastic range, so it stays connected to your paired device even if you aren't close to it. It also has a good latency performance with iOS and Android devices, which makes it a suitable choice for watching videos and movies. However, some apps compensate for latency differently, so your experience may vary.

0
Connectivity
Wi-Fi
Wi-Fi Version
No Wi-Fi
Wi-Fi Frequency Band
No Wi-Fi
Apple AirPlay
No
AirPlay Latency
N/A
Google Chromecast
No
Chromecast Latency
N/A

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

The Theater Solutions B83GR comes in three different colors. We tested the 'Slate Gray' variant; you can see the label for the model we tested here. It also comes in a 'Granite Grey' variant called the Theater Solutions B81GG, and a 'Sandstone Brown' variant called the Theater Solutions B82S.

If you come across another version, let us know in the discussions so we can update our review.

Compared To Other Speakers

The Theater Solutions B83GR is a portable Bluetooth speaker shaped like a rock, to blend in with most outdoor landscapes. It's very similar to the Alpine Corporation QLP542SLR-GR in design, build, and performance. It's also weatherproof and can be linked to up to 99 additional B83GR speakers, though we don't currently test for these. That said, it isn't as well-built as some of the other outdoor speakers we've tested, and it has a very uneven and boomy sound profile.

See our recommendations for the best Bluetooth speakers, the best waterproof Bluetooth speakers, and the best Bluetooth speakers for bass.

JBL FLIP 5

The JBL Flip 5 is a better speaker than the Theater Solutions B83GR overall. It has a much more balanced sound profile and can reproduce a more extended low-bass. It also has much better directivity, which allows your audio to sound clear from all angles, is more portable, and has a longer battery life. That being said, the Theater Solutions can get a bit louder than the JBL with fewer compression artifacts at max volume. It can also be paired with up to 99 B83GR speakers and has a unique rock-like design which some users with a large outdoor space might prefer in an outdoor speaker.

Anker Soundcore Flare 2

The Anker Soundcore Flare 2 is a better speaker than the Theater Solutions B83GR, with a more balanced sound profile. It has a graphic EQ, which is handy if you want to customize your sound. It also supports voice assistants and has an amazing soundstage. However, the B83GR may be better suited for those who prefer a louder speaker with fewer compression artifacts at max volume.

Sonos Move

The Sonos Move is a significantly better speaker than the Theater Solutions B83GR. Though we don't test for this, it's rated IP56 for dust and water resistance. It's more portable, better-built, has a built-in voice assistant, and can support Wi-Fi. It also has a longer battery life, a room customization feature, and a significantly more balanced sound profile with treble and bass adjustment features. That said, the B83GR may be a better option for those looking for a louder speaker that blends better with various outdoor landscapes.

Limitless Innovations TikiTunes

The Limitless Innovations TikiTunes is a slightly better speaker than the Theater Solutions B83GR. The TikiTunes has a significantly better battery performance and is more portable. However, the B83GR can get louder than the TikiTunes. That said, both speakers are designed to blend nicely with the outdoors, the TikiTunes is designed to look like torch light and the B83GR is designed to look like a rock.

Pohopa EF-B210G

The Pohopa EG-B210G Speakers are better speakers than the Theater Solutions B83GR overall. They come in a pair of two lantern speakers with LED lights that alternate to the beat of your audio. They also have a significantly longer battery life, and a better-balanced sound profile. Though the Pohopa speakers don't have a great soundstage performance, unlike the Theater Solutions, they can play stereo content. That said, the Theater Solutions can connect to over 99 additional B83GR speakers, and may be better suited for those with a larger outdoor space. Its rock-like design can also help it blend in with outdoor landscapes better.

Alpine Corporation QLP542SLR-GR

The Alpine Corporation QLP542SLR-GR is a slightly better speaker than the Theater Solutions B83GR. Though they're both designed to look like rocks to blend with outdoor landscapes, the Alpine Corporation QLP542SLR-GR is slightly better built, has somewhat of a more balanced sound profile, and a significantly longer battery life than the B83GR. That said, the B83GR has a larger Bluetooth range and can link to up to 99 additional speakers of the same model, which can be useful for those with a large outdoor space.

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