Speaqua Barnacle Pro Bluetooth speaker review: just missing in the hit


My friends may argue otherwise, but I’m not immune to fun. I can look at the Barnacle Pro in its Tidal Blue colourway (see above) and say “That’s a hoot!” Even better, this little Bluetooth speaker has a versatile mounting system. and it has a rare IP68 rating.

IP stands for “ingress protection” and in this case 6 means that dust and other particles (sand, for example) cannot enter and cause damage. The 8 means the unit can be submerged in up to 3 meters (9.8 feet) of water. Lower IP67 or IPX7 ratings are much more common, offer protection against submersion in up to one foot of water, and with the latest specification, make no promises about protection against particles. You can read all about IP codes in this other story.

This speaker should be able to withstand a trip to the bottom of the deep end of the pool, but I’m sure it will let me and the company know if I’m wrong. Now if only there were more bass.

This review is part of TechHive’s coverage of the best Bluetooth speakers, where you will find reviews of competing offerings, as well as a buyer’s guide on the features to consider when purchasing this type of product.

Barnacle Pro design and feature set

My tongue-in-cheek opening comment aside, I found Barnacle Pro’s 2.75 x 2.75-inch psychedelic blue motif appealing. It looks great attached to the shower wall with the suction cup mounted on the bottom. If you don’t like blue, this eyeball-shaped speaker is also available in six other ocean-themed colors, as well as a textured one that looks like a golf ball and comes with a green suction cup mount. I like this company, even if the Golf model costs an extra $ 5.

An included GoPro compatible mount can be substituted for the suction mount (they screw on and off), or you can use the captive key fob ring that surrounds the mounting point to turn the Barnacle Pro into a key fob. A fairly large keychain, to be sure, but one that can be quite useful in the wild if you are prone to losing those things.

The speaker floats, so it can also be useful as a keychain on a boat. (Yes, I meant ships, and don’t ask me why I think about losing things.) Speaqua also includes a USB-A to micro-USB charging cable.

limpet pro side Speaqua

Speaqua’s Waterproof Barnacle Pro comes in a few unique colors, including the Tidal Blue scheme shown here.

The controls are on the edge of the Barnacle Pro (I still mean “Bill”!), Near the front grill, though because the raised symbols are on the same multi-colored Tidal Blue trim that keeps the water out, ‘ they are a bit difficult to distinguish visually (see above). It took a few sessions before I became familiar. If you don’t mind being boring, you might consider purchasing this speaker in a solid color, where they are undoubtedly easier to see.

On one side of the unit, you will find volume down, power / memory mode, and volume up on one side of the unit. On the other, about two inches away, you will see: previous track / switch EQ, play / pause, and next track. There is also a micro-USB port under a captive plug. Said plug is actually part of the molded waterproof cover. That’s smart, but it’s a bit difficult to open. Of course, that can be said about the waterproof multi-speaker plug.


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