Tech Talk: LogitechUE Mobile Boombox: tiny but powerful

Posted on October 26, 2012

Murray Hill Tech TalkI’ve been trying out LogitechUE’s Mobile Boombox for a couple of weeks and I have to say that this is the best speaker of its type that I’ve ever tested.

LogitechUE Mobile Boombox in basic all-black

Photo Logitech: The LogitechUE Mobile Boombox in basic all-black

The Mobile Boombox, with a suggested retail price of $119.99 CAD; is a tiny wireless Bluetooth speaker that you can virtually take anywhere. It looks small, even when beside an iPhone. The Mobile Boombox is 11.1cm D,
6.7cm W, 
6.1cm H and weighs 
298g. It has two 1” full-range drivers onboard, that can pump sound out at a maximum of 78dBA with a frequency response of 150 Hz – 18 kHz. It can be powered with an adapter, and the rechargeable batteries will hold a charge that offers about ten hours of continuous play – depending on how much you crank it up.

The LogitechUE Mobile Boombox is a Bluetooth speaker with an effective range of around 30-50 feet; and you can pair up to eight devices with it; two of them simultaneously. That’s pretty cool – you can pair it with your phone and a friends and take turns playing songs on the Mobile Boombox. It also acts as a speakerphone, although I have to say I didn’t use it that way because my iPhone 5 is such a good speakerphone. I did try it out, and as a speakerphone I think I’ll stick to my iPhone.

LogitechUE Mobile Boombox – it’s tiny!

LogitechUE Mobile Boombox - all colours

Photo Logitech: The LogitechUE Mobile Boombox – all colours

LogitechUE Mobile Boombox with newest Apple iPod Touch on top for comparison

Photo MHill: The LogitechUE Mobile Boombox with newest Apple iPod Touch on top for comparison

Because of the small size of this speaker it easily lends fits in the suitcase or backpack when travelling. It comes in basic all black, and also black with a green or red front grille. White bodied versions come with grilles in white and blue. The front and back grilles are metal, while the top, sides and bottom are rubberized. You can crank it up while it’s on a hard surface and there’s no vibration noise because of the rubberized exterior – and it stays where you put it within reason.

Controls on the top are for pairing with Bluetooth devices, and volume up and down. The back has an on/off switch and a green LED to indicate whether it’s charging or charged. The blue LED on the front comes on when you first turn it on, and lets you know if it’s paired. Pairing takes about ten seconds – you simply have your smartphone look for it while you press the Bluetooth button on top. Several chimes tell you you’re in business and from then on it’s just a question of making sure it’s turned on. There’s no sleep setting, so the Mobile Boombox needs to be turned off when not in use in order to preserve battery life – not a big deal.

The sound quality is surprising. There’s pretty good bass and the highs are nice and clear and crisp. You can’t crank it up like you can a larger speaker, but there’s plenty of volume, bass and treble for a small space like a hotel room or cabin. I played everything on it from Beethoven and Mozart to ACDC, with acoustic, jazz and rock thrown in. It handled everything very well and I kept thinking that it was amazing to be walking around the house playing music with that type of sound quality from my iPhone, which was sitting on my desk upstairs.

PROS:  Decent sound; rubberized case; small size; decent volume; pair two devices at once, eight all together; good pricing; great battery life.

CONS: Not the greatest speakerphone around; it doesn’t have ear-shattering volume, it’s not reasonable to expect that in a little speaker like this.

TO SUM IT UP:  If you’re looking for an ultra-portable speaker with decent sound and great battery life – stop reading this and go get one of these LogitechUE Mobile Boomboxes!

Murray Hill is lead tech writer at communicatto.com. You can reach Murray by email at murray@communicatto.com or on Twitter at @MurrayDHill

About Murray Hill

Murray Hill has been a freelance columnist appearing regularly in some of the most prominent Canadian newspapers since 1974. He began writing about technology over twenty-four years ago and he still maintains the belief that there's a gadget or gizmo for every situation and application. His fascination with technology and gadgets has endured for over fifty years, and has led to many familial discussions about the the difference between the words "need" and "want" when referring to tech. Based in Saskatoon, connect with Murray at: murray@communicatto.com

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