In recent years, I’ve had the opportunity to experience a lot of Bluetooth speakers. These devices come in various shapes and sizes and offer varying degrees of sound quality. Despite this, increasingly, they all seem to have one thing in common: they are built for durability. Arguably the most durable Bluetooth speaker on the market today is the FUGOO Tough XL. Offering true 360-degree sound in a waterproof and dustproof case, the Tough XL by FUGOO is worth considering this holiday shopping season, as you’ll see in this review.
Design and Hardware
- Rugged, modern design
- 360-degree sound
- 36 hours between charges
Fugoo offers a long-range of Bluetooth speakers, from the chic Style collection to the long-lasting Sport collection. The company’s Tough collection is described as “the best rugged, waterproof Bluetooth speaker available.” I would certainly agree.
The Fugoo Tough XL comes with an impressive 35-hour battery life and a USB port to quick charge your phone or tablet. It’s surrounded by a polymer jacket with aluminum plating and stainless steel grills.
The speaker itself includes shock-mounted components and end caps to absorb impact up to 3 feet. Inside, the Fugoo Tough XL includes eight drivers, four tweeters, two mid/sub drivers, and two passive bass radiators. The drivers are positioned on all four sides of the device to offer 360-degree sound.
The Fugoo Tough XL, which measures 13.18 inches by 4.37 inches by 4.64 inches, ships with an AC adapter, USB cable, audio cable, and hex wrench (to remove the jacket, if necessary). Available accessories include a hand and shoulder strap and remote control.
During my tests, I was able to achieve 36 hours between charges twice, and 34 hours on my first try. Competitor speakers can’t compare. The popular UE Megaboom, for example, only guarantees 20 hours between charges, while the Bose Soundlink 3 guarantees 14 hours. By comparison, the smaller Fugoo Tough offers 40 hours of battery life between charges.
I was very impressed with the Fugoo Tough XL’s ability to push audio in multiple directions thanks to its speakers, which are tilted slightly upward. The device does a great job at maintaining clear highs and bassy lows.
As usual, for my tests, I listened to the following songs via Apple Music:
- “Prologue” by Alexandre Desplat, “Birth (Original Score) Soundtrack”
- “Hey Eugene” by Pink Martini, “Hey Eugene!”
- “Wall of Glass” by Don Ross, “Don Ross”
The Fugoo Tough XL is compatible with Siri and Google Now, which means that it supports voice commands. It’s also a noteworthy speakerphone.
The Bottom Line
The Tough XL is the first Fugoo product I have tried, but it certainly won’t be the last. It offers amazing sound, whether inside or out, in a durable case to boot. My advice: If you plan on hiking with your Bluetooth speaker, buy a hand or shoulder strap. At 4 pounds, the Fugoo Tough XL isn’t light.