I saw Loewe’s new Bluetooth speaker collab with Kylian Mbappé, and it's a hat trick of striking colors for this Sony and JBL rival

Three Bluetooth speakers sit side by side on a table
The new We Hear Pro comes in three colors: black, denim and neon yellow. (Image credit: Future)

Loewe’s new special edition We Hear Pro Bluetooth speaker is proof that cross-team collaborations make for more unique products. It’s big, bright and bold, just like French footballer Kylian Mbappé, who was named one of the 100 most influential people of 2023 by Time magazine, and worked with Loewe on this project. While the speaker itself is cast from the existing We Hear 2 model, the partnership has seen Loewe make some significant upgrades to the colors and features of this limited edition run. 

The main differences between the new We Hear Pro and the We Hear 2 – which it’s most similar to due to its large build (the We Hear 1 is roughly half the size and weight) – are the three unique colors, a studier carrying strap, increased power and battery life, faster charging time and the ability to charge your phone. Not all of the best Bluetooth speakers are able to double as a power bank, and it can be a particularly useful feature.  

kylian mbappé stands holding a speaker udner his arm

Kylian Mbappé poses with the neon yellow We Hear Pro speaker.  (Image credit: Loewe)

All these improvements come with a slightly elevated price tag, though. Instead of £159 (about $200 / €179) for the We Hear 2, the We Hear Pro costs $275 / £269 (about €313), which pits it against the more upper-middle to premium end of the market with the likes of JBL and Sony. Can’t wait to get your hands on one? The We Hear Pro is now available to buy from Loewe directly and select retailers.

Mbappé is Loewe’s signing of the season

Loewe is known for its premium design flare and those smarts run through its sub-brand, We, too. We by Loewe is aimed at a younger audience, and was launched in 2021 as part of the company’s comeback into the electronics space – it had been through a lull for several years before it was bought by the investment group Skytec – with a more streamlined range of just TVs and speakers. 

Three men stand in front a promotional poster

(From left to right) Loewe's CEO Aslan Khabliev, COO Christian Alber and CTO Thomas Putz at Loewe's product unveiling in Berlin, Germany.   (Image credit: Future)

But now it looks to be expanding that range with creative partnerships like the We Hear Pro with Mbappé. It’s a great excuse to revamp an existing product line to be more attractive, which is exactly what it has done with the Hear Pro.

We by Loewe has managed to stretch the battery life of the Hear Pro by another seven hours from the Hear 2, bringing it up to 24 hours, which is just under what the Sony SRS-XG300 offers. Like its closest Sony offerings, the Hear Pro has fast-charging that means it can be fully topped in just two hours (the Hear 2 requires at least four to five hours to fully recharge in comparison). Loewe has also boosted the total output from 60 watts in the Hear 2 to 100 watts, giving the Hear Pro a much louder sound.

Did Loewe miss a trick by not making the colorways resemble the French flag? I personally love the coral red of the We Hear 1 and Hear 2, and would have thought moving from coral to red and cool gray to white made sense – it already updated the aqua blue to denim – but that’s not to say I’m not a fan of what they’ve gone with. I also agree with Mbappé that the neon yellow is the best of the bunch.

A hand holds a blue speaker

The improved strap feels study and secure to hold. It's also quite long, allowing you to sling it over your shoulder.    (Image credit: Future)

Are big boomboxes back? 

It’s been a surprisingly busy year already for new Bluetooth speaker launches, and it’s only May. JBL kicked things off at CES 2024 with two new PartyBox speakers. We later saw a Sonos Move-rivalling bass speaker called the Brane X. I then got to try Sony’s new trio of punchy portable speakers, and most recently Bose launched a beefy version of the SoundLink Max.

There’s one very obvious design feature that links all the above: their size. These aren’t the palm-sized portable speakers we’re used to seeing. Instead, these speakers are much more akin to the big radio and cassette player boomboxes, and we're seeing a steady flow of more models like this. They’re designed to deliver a big room filling sound that can get a party going, and going by what I heard during a quick test of the We Hear Pro, it can definitely drown out the noises of a busy tech briefing very easily. That’s thanks to an array of dynamic drivers and passive bass radiators, alongside a class-D amplifier, which helps it not distort at higher volumes.

Two speakers sit side by side

Like JBL and Sony speakers, there's multi-point pairing functionality – the Hear Pro can sync up to 14 speakers.  (Image credit: Future)

The We Hear Pro isn’t as big as the boxy loud speakers from the '80s, though. Instead, it’s more about the size of a litre bottle of water. That means you can’t as easily throw it in your bag to take with you to the park or beach like you could with say the JBL Charge 5 – even though it has a great IPX6 waterproof rating and comfortable strap. But it’s also significantly more movable than Sony’s ULT Field 7, which has that bigger loudspeaker sound you might be after. It’s in this space that Loewe’s We Hear Pro sits, offering a bridge between the two if big boomboxy sound is what you're after.

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Amelia Schwanke
Senior Editor UK, Home Entertainment

Amelia became the Senior Editor for Home Entertainment at TechRadar in the UK in April 2023. With a background of more than eight years in tech and finance publishing, she's now leading our coverage to bring you a fresh perspective on everything to do with TV and audio. When she's not tinkering with the latest gadgets and gizmos in the ever-evolving world of home entertainment, you’ll find her watching movies, taking pictures and travelling.