Skullcandy Ounce XT Skullcandy Kilo XT review

Portable Bluetooth speakers don’t have to be huge to have good sound quality. I’ve been looking for a portable speaker I can take with me as I roam outside throughout the day. My hands are always full so I wanted the speaker to be small enough to fit in my pocket, and it has to have a high IPX rating in case I’m out in the rain. After testing out the Skullcandy Ounce XT and the Skullcandy Kilo XT, I think I may have found the perfect speaker. Even though they fit in the palm of my hand, they both have great battery life and sound quality. Here’s a look at what I thought of the Skullcandy Ounce XT and the Skullcandy Kilo XT.

Features of Skullcandy Ounce XT and the Skullcandy Kilo XT

Skullcandy Ounce XT & Kilo XT review

Both Skullcandy Ounce XT and the Skullcandy Kilo XT are portable Bluetooth speakers. They don’t have Wi-Fi, so they only connect to your phone and stream audio via Bluetooth v5.3.

Skullcandy Kilo XT features

  • Rugged design with volume buttons on the front of the speaker
  • One 7-watt 1.75-inch driver with downward-firing passive radiator
  • IPX7 rating means the speaker is waterproof and can be immersed in water
  • 24 hours of battery life
  • Charges via USB-C
  • True wireless stereo sound and you can pair two Kilo XT speakers together for surround sound
  • Has a clip you can use to hang the speaker anywhere

Skullcandy Ounce XT features

  • Has the same rugged design as the Kilo XT with volume buttons on the front of the speaker
  • IPX7 rating so it can be immersed in water
  • 16 hours of battery life
  • Charges via USB-C
  • Has a carry strap built-in

Testing Skullcandy Ounce XT and the Skullcandy Kilo XT

Skullcandy Ounce XT review

I used both the Skullcandy Ounce XT and the Skullcandy Kilo XT over a period of two weeks, and I’ve really enjoyed using both of them. They are small, light, and the audio is crisp and clear for music, podcasts, and ebooks. Both speakers have the same durable style, but the Kilo XT is slightly larger. There are three buttons on the front of each speaker, with a multi-function button you use to turn the speaker on, pair the speaker with your phone, and turn it off. The button also pauses and resumes music.

To set up the speakers all you’ll have to do is charge them and turn them on. My phone found both almost instantly and began playing music.

Impressive audio in a tiny package

The Skullcandy Ounce XT and the Skullcandy Kilo XT have very good sound quality. I played a lot of different tracks and playlists on these speakers and they produce smooth, clear audio when played at mid-volume. The Skullcandy Kilo XT has the advantage over the two as it has true wireless stereo sound and can dip into the low notes on bass-heavy tracks. I put my hand on the speaker when I was streaming a rap playlist and that little guy was actually vibrating.  

I turned the sound up to almost max on both and they were slightly distorted at peak volume. It’s definitely not as smooth as mid-volume. I don’t think I would use either for cranking out loud music though, so I was happy with low to mid-range. For me, this is the type of speaker you use for background audio, where you can enjoy but it’s not loud enough to intrude on conversation.

Waterproof with an IPX7 rating

Skullcandy Kilo review

For peace of mind, there’s nothing like having a waterproof speaker. Both the Skullcandy Ounce XT and the Skullcandy Kilo XT are IPX7 rated, so they can be submerged in up to 1 meter of water (about 3 feet) for 30 minutes. You might think you won’t get splashed during the course of your day, but it happens to me all the time. I used both speakers while in the hot tub and I had the Kilo XT in my pocket when I had to take a quick dip in a very cold lake. My corgi thought it would be a good idea to take us both for a swim, and it was such an impulsive decision that I had to throw my phone onto the ground as I chased her in. It was nice to know I didn’t have to grab the speaker and toss it out too.

Battery life of Skullcandy Ounce XT and the Skullcandy Kilo XT

The Skullcandy Ounce XT has approximately 16 hours of battery life and the Skullcandy Kilo XT has 24 hours. Skullcandy included a USB-C cable with both, and it takes about 3 hours to reach a full charge. I didn’t manage to drain either speaker while testing them, and I’m sure I used them for at least 10 hours each. I did have a full charge before I started using them, but they reliably turned on and began streaming every time I wanted to play music.

Clip your speaker onto anything

Skullcandy Kilo XT

One feature of the Skullcandy Ounce XT and the Skullcandy Kilo XT that deserves a mention is the secure strap and clip added to the top of the speaker. The Kilo XT has a carabiner type of clip that attaches the speaker to anything, while the Ounce XT has a built-in carry strap. I like how the clip is easy to attach to a belt loop so I could wear it as I walked around the yard, and when in my greenhouse I hooked it to a plant pot. The carry strap on the Ounce XT is easy to hold too.

I also like how both speakers have a plastic base that elevates them slightly so they don’t lay flat on any surface. The design seems to dampen vibration when you are playing music.

Should you choose the Skullcandy Ounce XT or the Skullcandy Kilo XT?

Skullcandy Kilo XT review

I think the Skullcandy Ounce XT and the Skullcandy Kilo XT are great everyday speakers. They don’t have the size and wattage to be the centre of the party, but they work very well as an inexpensive, easy to use speaker that plays clear audio at mid-range or low volume. This is the type of speaker you can use while going for a walk or a hike, cooking dinner in the kitchen, or doing a little bit of yard work.

One of the best features is the IPX7 rating, but both have good battery life too. If I had to choose one or the other I’d choose the Kilo XT as it has slightly better sound quality, but I like the smaller size of the Ounce XT too.

You can find your own Skullcandy Ounce XT and Skullcandy Kilo XT portable Bluetooth speakers at Best Buy.

Shelly Wutke
Editor TV & Home Theatre
I'm a Vancouver freelancer and tech enthusiast. When I'm not writing you'll find me on my farm with my alpacas, chickens, and honeybees. Visit my website Survivemag

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