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Lifewire / Jason Schneider
Solid, stable connectivity
Durable build quality
No premium Bluetooth codecs
Cheap, lackluster design
No digital output
This is a great little Bluetooth audio receiver that has a lot going for it, from stable connectivity to a very wallet-friendly price.
The Logitech Bluetooth Audio Receiver is everything you need in a receiver, and virtually nothing else. Logitech is a brand known for high quality devices, primarily in the consumer computer market. Where this differs from their industry standard keyboards and mice is that a Bluetooth receiver has to play in the high-end audio space. To be fair, this isn’t a bad receiver—in our tests it worked simply and flawlessly, and did so for a great price. You’ll sacrifice some more expensive features, like premium design and modern Bluetooth codecs, but for about $20, the number of concessions is shockingly low. Here’s how our unit performed in about a week of testing.
This was a vexing category for us when testing this unit. All the pictures shown on the Logitech site, and even on the box itself, showed a really premium-looking device. This is something we were really eager to rave about in the review, because at this price point, Bluetooth receivers tend to look cheap and bargain-basement. When we pulled the unit out of the box, however, it looked cheaper than the photos would imply.
With the exception of its cheap-looking design, the Logitech Bluetooth receiver checks off virtually every necessity you’d expect on a unit like this.
That’s not to say it doesn't have its design merits—sleek, sharp edges, with a bit of a depression on the inside that houses a blue-accented button. On the front, “Logi” is written in nice-looking lettering. We’re not sure why they abbreviated their brand in this instance, but it does look nice. Where the design falls short is the back of the unit, dull-looking blue plastic that houses the inputs and outputs.
On the flipside of the design coin is the build quality. Many Bluetooth receiver units at this price point tend to look sleek but feel flimsy—the Logitech is the opposite. At 1.2oz, it isn’t even nearly the heaviest unit we tested, but because most of the enclosure is built of a hard, sharp-edged, matte plastic, it felt really substantial.
The rubber on the bottom of the unit kept it firmly and stably planted in our entertainment set up. Even the inputs and outputs on the back felt really stable when plugging in the included wires.
One great fact about this receiver unit was just how easy and seamlessly it connected to our Bluetooth devices. Like many of the other budget options, there are no bells and whistles here—no Wi-Fi connectivity or app support. Instead, you pull it out of the box, plug it in, and turn it on using the giant Bluetooth-logo button on the top. From here, it’s in pairing mode automatically, and you’ll find it in your device’s Bluetooth list pretty easily. To pair to another device, you simply need to tap that button again.
The Logitech adapter can store up to eight different Bluetooth devices in its memory, and you can even have two of them connected to the receiver at once. This is great for homes with a lot of Bluetooth devices, or for connecting new ones at a party. There’s pretty modern Bluetooth capabilities here, and Logitech is promising about 50 feet of range, provided there’s good line of site. Our tests showed very little dropout, even from the next room through fairly thick concrete walls. This is impressive considering many budget Bluetooth receivers tend to dropout from room to room. Logitech has built a simple device that just works.
You won’t find any digital optical outputs here, but this unit does pack a 3.5mm aux audio output as well as direct dual RCA outputs as well. This means that connecting to your speaker system or your surround sound receiver is easy right out of the box, without the need for cumbersome, sometimes spotty adapters. This is a unit that has all the bare minimums, with none of the flashy premium options.
Anecdotally, the sound quality on the Logitech was solid for most uses. As we already mentioned, the connectivity is stable, with few-to-no dropouts during our in-apartment tests. That’s half the ballgame when it comes to these budget Bluetooth receivers.
The sound quality on the Logitech was solid for most uses.
The other half is the Bluetooth codec employed. Logitech doesn’t specify on any of its tech sheets which codec is being used. We dug in on our end and found that it’s most likely the base-level SBC codec. This means that any audio you send via the receiver will be compressed to the standard Bluetooth levels. This isn’t necessarily a problem, especially if you’re connecting this to everyday speakers. But, if you’re looking to use this receiver with a high end audio system, and want to play audio files other than MP3s, we’d recommend going for something that includes aptX or another less lossy protocol. Again, this isn’t a deal breaker, because most users aren’t going to notice audible degradation, but it’s important to mention.
With the exception of its cheap-looking design, the Logitech Bluetooth receiver checks off virtually every necessity you’d expect on a unit like this. It offers a really stable connection, decent sound, and feels sturdy and durable. Most impressively, it accomplishes all of this at a ~$20 retail price. To be fair, Logitech lists the unit at $40 on their site, but you’ll find it at about half the price at most online retailers. In our book, this is definitely worth it on the basis of connectivity and build quality alone. If you want something that will deliver a bit more on the sound quality front, you’ll have to spend a bit more.
Etekcity Roverbeats Unify: Around the same price, you’ll find a smaller, battery-powered unit that you can take with you on the go, but feels noticeably flimsier.
Audioengine B1: This ultra-premium receiver sports a much bigger range, much better sound quality, and of course, a much higher price point.
Echo Link: Amazon’s answer to the Bluetooth receiver space is also much pricier but gives you a lot of functionality that will play nice with other Echo devices.
Cheap in the best way.
The question of whether this is the Bluetooth receiver for you lies largely in how much you’re willing to spend. If price is of supreme importance, this Logitech unit is a sturdy device with really solid connectivity and the option to use a bunch of devices. It won’t, however, give you a premium look and feel or standout sound quality. These are expected concessions though, and based on our testing we definitely recommend this unit for the average user, even if we can’t give it the audiophile stamp of approval.
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