Advertiser Disclosure

Fluance Fi30 Review: Simple Speaker, Solid Performance

Aug. 8, 2016
Product Comparisons, Shopping
NerdWallet adheres to strict standards of editorial integrity to help you make decisions with confidence. Some of the products we feature are from partners. Here’s how we make money.
We adhere to strict standards of editorial integrity. Some of the products we feature are from our partners. Here’s how we make money.

Some speakers come jam-packed with features, but are thin on sound and heavy on price. You might be better off with a more basic model that pleases both your ear and your wallet.

If you’re looking for a straightforward speaker without a hefty price tag, the Fluance Fi30 fits the bill. It delivers a strong performance and won’t overwhelm you with features. Take a look at our analysis to find out whether it’s the one for you.

Fluance-fi30The speaker

The Fluance Fi30 is a Bluetooth speaker with a simple, modern look.

This oblong speaker is fairly small, weighing 8.3 pounds and measuring 5.5 inches high, 16.5 inches wide and 5.5 inches deep.

The Fi30 is constructed with wood that’s designed to be both stylish and functional. It uses medium-density fiberboard wood, which helps improve acoustics and prevent audio distortion. The speaker has two visible fiberglass drivers in the front that aim to create more accurate sound with a wide range.

The Fluance Fi30 normally sells on the manufacturer’s website for $199.99, but it’s currently available for $99.97. You might also find it for less at other retailers like Amazon.

Features

The Fluance Fi30 isn’t overloaded with features, but it boasts some useful options. It has a Bluetooth range of up to 33 feet and features automatic pairing technology, meaning it can quickly connect to your device when it’s within range.

The speaker has a 3.5mm auxiliary input that lets you connect directly to devices with a headphone jack, like MP3 players and laptops. You can also charge your device by plugging it into the Fi30’s USB port.

Note that because the speaker uses an AC adapter rather than a battery, it’s not portable. And it has only a power button and a Bluetooth pairing button, so you must control the volume, settings and other functions with your connected device.

» MORE: The best Bluetooth speakers

The reviews

So how does the Fluance Fi30 perform?

We analyzed reviews of some of the most popular speakers on the market, including the Fluance Fi30, to see how it fared. We looked at expert opinions from review sites such as The Sweethome and CNET, and analyzed user reviews to see what shoppers had to say about the various attributes of each speaker.

We found that the Fi30 has several strong traits. Based on the reviews, the sound quality is excellent. Users said the speaker offers rich, warm sound regardless of volume. Many were pleased with the value, noting that the sound is comparable to that of more expensive speakers. This model also earned praise for its ability to charge devices.

While the Fi30 received mostly positive feedback, there were a few complaints. Some reviewers weren’t pleased with the lack of buttons on the unit. Others disliked that the speaker can’t pair with more than one device at a time, which meant that they had to unpair a previously used device before connecting another one.

The verdict

With its simple design, high-quality sound and affordable price, the Fluance Fi30 is a good entry-level speaker for the music aficionado. It’s perfect for your living room, bedroom or kitchen if you don’t need an interactive speaker. And its charging ability keeps your device ready to play at all times.

But if you’re looking for a home speaker with more advanced features, consider a “smarter” model like the Amazon Echo or the portable Amazon Tap. You can learn more about these speakers in our comparison.

More from NerdWallet
The best iHome speakers
UE Mini Boom vs. Boom vs. Megaboom
Amazon Echo vs. Sonos Play:1

Lauren Schwahn is a staff writer at NerdWallet, a personal finance website. Email: lschwahn@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @lauren_schwahn.