The name Marshall needs no introduction to people who know the sound. The most influential amplifiers and cabinets ever made have transformed music and still do. They entered the world of manufacturing Bluetooth speakers in 2010 and now have a range of options for people who want to carry Marshall sound around with them.
Marshall Stockwell II is the follow-up to Marshall Stockwell I and sits right in the middle of the range. The question on many people’s lips will be, will it excel-like other Marshall products?
Let’s take a look and find out in our Marshall Stockwell II Review…
If there is one thing you know you are going to get from Marshall, it is a great sound. And so it is with this speaker. But it has a lot more going for it than that.
In the design of this speaker, Marshall has pulled no punches. They have drawn heavily on the look of their amplifier cabinets. And why not? They are widely known the world over.
Even the control knobs on the top imitate those of the iconic amps. The logo completes ‘the look.’ Now, this is not going to be to everyone’s liking, of course. But we don’t think Marshall will too worried about the few that might shy away. ‘If you’ve got it, then flaunt it’ is the expression we think. And Marshall has plenty to flaunt.
More than just an iconic appearance…
But it’s not just about looks. In the design, they have made a speaker that is both full of Marshall sound but still compact. Small enough to carry around and at three pounds light enough to take anywhere.
Despite its relatively small size, this speaker packs a punch. But then that is the least you would expect. Utilizing a high level of Bluetooth 5.0 and a great multi-directional sound spread, this is going to move you.
Whether you are indoors or out, it performs. What is it about this speaker that makes it so good?
Marshall knows a thing or two about building secure and strong speaker cabinets. They would have to, given that Pete Townshend launched his guitar at a few every night.
That strength extends down to even the most compact of speakers. The Stockwell has a tough silicone casing with a grille made of steel. That ought to be tough enough.
It is designed as a speaker to carry around with you. So it needs to be able to handle all sorts of situations. This is why it has earned its IPX4 water-resistant rating.
Durable and portable…
If you are out and about and get caught in a shower, no problem. If you are by the pool and it gets splashed, no problem. It can withstand all of that without even dropping a beat. For when you do take it out with you, there is a convenient carrying strap.
We mentioned that it is a compact unit with a weight of three pounds. It actually only measures 7 by 6 by 2.75 inches. It makes you wonder where all the sound comes from.
Superb speakers and amp…
It carries three Class ‘D’ amplifiers in its small frame. These drive the front and the rear-facing tweeters and the subwoofer. This is a bass-reflex design cabinet.
The sub has a 10-watt amp and the tweeters a 5-watt amp each. And with speakers facing back and front, the sound envelopes you.
There is a built-in rechargeable Lithium-ion battery along with two charging modes. Using the standard charge mode will take about five hours. This will give you about 20 hours of playtime. There is also a quick-charge mode giving you about six hours of playtime from a quick twenty minutes charge.
The build is solid, and its compact design makes it an ideal companion when you go out. But don’t forget, this is also a great sounding speaker at home.
There can be no complaints at all so far.
Nothing too elaborate here because nothing elaborate is required. The top of the speaker has analog controls for volume, treble, and bass. This just lest you add some fine-tuning to the sound. Added to these three controls are a Bluetooth button and a status indicator light for the battery.
One rather nice addition that may impress some is the ‘up to 10‘ controls for volume, bass, and treble, as well as the control knobs themselves. They are similar in style to what you are going to get on the front of a Marshall 100-watt amp.
If there is one area which some will say could be better, it is in the connections. Not that there’s anything wrong. There are just one or two additions that could have been made.
What do we mean?
It has Bluetooth 5.0, a good standard but doesn’t support aptX or AAC. Whilst that might not be a deal-breaker, some might be surprised at its omission.
Normal rules apply with an operating distance up to 30 feet from the speaker. It features multi-host functions to allow others with compatible devices to link in.
A second item not included that is not uncommon with other speakers is there is no app. You might expect some form of online system to work with the speaker. But the Stockwell does not have support from a Marshall app.
As a further addition, there is a 3.5mm socket for use with non-Bluetooth compatible devices. Therefore, the use of playlists from virtually any device is covered.
This is the area that most people will be interested in. How does it sound? It is certainly different than what you might expect and what other speakers offer.
It has speakers on both sides of the unit. This Marshall Stockwell II gives you a cross between a true stereophonic sound and surround sound. Whether on the beach at a barbeque or just at home, the sound envelopes you.
Not only is the sound multi-directional, giving you 360-degree sound, but it is also powerful and clean. Even cranked up, this speaker doesn’t distort.
It has a frequency range of 60-20,000 Hz and an SPL of 80 dB at a one-meter distance. But as with the Bluetooth option, there is also something excluded that could have been included.
A missing feature?
There is no facility to make or answer calls with this speaker. It is as if Marshall has said this speaker is for music. Leave your phone alone and listen.
Overall, the performance is exemplary. The sound is great. It is loud and powerful with plenty of punch. But then what did you expect?
And one plus we haven’t mentioned yet. It has a price point that simply says ‘come and get me.’
Marshall Stockwell II Review Pros and Cons
- Well-made with a great style and design.
- Excellent sounds with options for tone changes.
- Powerful, with plenty of volume.
- Real stereophonic surround-like sound experience.
- Very attractive price point.
- Water-resistant rating.
- Doesn’t support aptX or AAC.
- Some will miss the option to answer and make calls.
Looking for Something Else?
Also, take a look at our reviews of the Best Floor Standing Speakers, the Best Bookshelf Speakers Under $500, the Best Computer Speakers Under $100, and the Best 7.1 Home Theater System currently available in 2021.
Marshall Stockwell II Review Final Thoughts
The fact that it has an iconic design with a styling that says Marshall will be an asset for some. We would go along with that.
But it is much more than just a look. It is a great speaker that is perfect for either home, beach, pool, or out with friends.
And at this price point, we feel it is one of the best out there without a doubt.