If you are looking for a rugged, portable Bluetooth speaker with water protection then the UE Roll 2 and the Sony SRS-XB10 are two solid options.
They have a similar price and size, so it is worth to compare them to find out which one is the better choice.
In this UE Roll 2 vs Sony SRS-XB10 review, I will test every attribute of the speakers to help you decide which one fits better your needs.
You can find the reviews of the speakers here:
UE Roll 2 vs Sony SRS-XB10 Comparison Video
At the date of this article (08.01.2018), the Sony SRS-XB10 was available around $60 while you could buy the UE Roll 2 around $70 dollars.
So they have a similar price, the UE Roll 2 is slightly more expensive.
From the two speakers, the UE Roll 2 has a larger footprint but slimmer design than the XB10.
It has a disc-like shape, so it’s easy to slip it into a beach or notebook bag.
The XB10 looks like a can of soda just a bit shorter.
It was a good design choice because it fits well into any drink holder slot in the cars or bags.
Both speakers feel solid, they were made for outdoor activities.
The UE Roll 2 got a nice textured fabric speaker grille on the front while its back is covered by a matte finished rubberized plastic.
The XB10 also has a full silicone outer coating and a metal speaker grille on the top.
I think both speakers look youthful and stylish.
The speakers come with a micro USB cable included and the UE Roll 2 got an extra accessory which is the Floatie.
The Floatie is a mini inflatable life preserver which helps the speaker to float on the water when you use it in a lake or in a pool.
For the Roll 2, you can download a mobile app which provides some handy features like you can set an alarm using your own music or turn on/off the speaker remotely.
There is no mobile app available for the Sony XB10.
The UE Roll 2 got an IPX7 water protection which means it is completely waterproof and can be submerged into 1-meter-deep water for 30 minutes.
The Sony SRS-XB10 got an IPX5 water protection, so it is only splash-proof which means you can use it as a shower speaker or you can wash it off, however, it cannot be submerged into water.
So if you would like to use your speaker for watersports or at a pool, then the UE Roll 2 is a safer choice.
To improve their portability, both speakers got a built-in attachment option.
The UE Roll 2 has an elastic cord on the back which is easy to use and the speaker can be attached with it to almost anything.
However, unfortunately, it is not replaceable so if it gets damaged you lose this attachment option.
The Sony XB10 has a detachable strap which can be used to hang the speaker on your bike or to attach it to your backpack.
I think the cord of the UE Roll 2 is more versatile and useful.
It is a clever design solution that the plastic ring at the end of the XB10’s strap can be used as a stand, so you can lay the speaker on it and direct the sound towards you for example if you are watching a movie.
Since both speakers are water protected their ports are covered by a waterproof door.
Here I think the solution of the Sony is better, it is easier to open and close the door and to connect the cables to the ports.
By the UE Roll 2, it is more cumbersome to open the flap and the ports lie too deep so it is hard to connect the cables to them.
Connectivity, Bluetooth Range
Both speakers have an audio jack input port, so can be connected via cable.
It is a plus that the XB10 has a built-in NFC chip which means you can pair your NFC-enabled smartphone just by touching it to the speaker.
It is still uncommon in this category and makes the pairing process much easier.
In my outdoor test, I measured around 50 feet Bluetooth range by the UE Roll 2 and only around 20 feet by the Sony XB10.
The Bluetooth range of the XB10 is very short, the UE Roll 2 has a much better range.
So if you plan to use your speaker far from the Bluetooth source then the UE Roll 2 is definitely a better choice.
Music Control Capability
One difference between the two devices that the XB10 has a microphone unlike the Roll 2 so can be used as a speakerphone to answer phone calls.
The XB10 also has some music control capabilities, which means you can pause/play the music and jump to the next song.
By the UE Roll 2, you can only adjust the volume level and that’s it, you cannot even pause/play a song.
It’s possible with both speakers to connect two devices together and make them work in pair, in addition, they support stereo mode as well.
In my test when I played various types of songs at 70% volume on the speakers, I got 11 hours 30 minutes playtime by the UE Roll 2 and measured 15 hours by the Sony XB10.
Repeating the same test on full volume I got 2 hours 10 minutes by the UE Roll 2 and 6 hours 30 minutes by the Sony XB10.
So in terms of battery life, the XB10 easily blows the Roll 2 out of the water.
It is a disadvantage of both speakers that they do not have battery level indicator, so they cannot tell you the exact remaining battery percentage.
UE Roll 2 vs Sony SRS-XB10 Sound Test
The two speakers have a completely different sound profile.
By the UE Roll 2, the mids and the highs dominate, the bass and the lower frequencies are weak.
In contrast, the Sony XB10 has a punchy bass with deeper lows, however, the highs and the vocals are not so nice and pronounced than by the Roll 2.
So it really depends on the actual song which one sounds better.
By the bass heavy songs, the UE Roll 2 sounds flat and by the songs with lots of vocals, the Sony XB10 sounds muddier.
The main shortcoming of the Sony XB10 is that it tends to distort on higher volume levels.
So because of the nicer treble and the fewer distortions, I rather prefer the sound of the UE Roll 2.
The maximum volume of the Roll 2 is much higher than by the XB10, it can go really loud.
It can be useful in some situations, however, on maximum volume, the sound becomes thin and too harsh, not pleasant to listen to.
During the tests it turned out that there is no clear winner, both speakers have their own strengths and weaknesses.
As far as the sound goes, the UE Roll 2 is louder and has better highs and mids.
In addition, it has longer Bluetooth range, it is completely waterproof and can float on the water with its Floatie.
Also its attachment option, the built-in elastic cord is more useful when you want to carry the speaker around.
The Sony XB10 has a more powerful and punchier bass, it has more music control capabilities and an NFC chip to make the pairing process easier.
It has also a much longer battery life than the Roll 2 and a built-in microphone to answer phone calls.
So I suggest considering which attributes are the more important factors for you and choose from the two speakers accordingly.
Check also my full reviews about the speakers: