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Portable Speaker Guide

pick out the right portable speaker system

Portable speakers have been around for decades now, but a lot has changed in the industry since the orignal boombox was introduced.  Technology has evolved and the source of our music has changed too.  Thousands of portable speakers have entered the market in various shapes, sizes, and costs.  We wanted to compile a list of things to consider when you buy a portable speaker.  Maybe Boombotix speakers are right for your lifestyle, but if not, we’re glad we can help find an audio device that works for YOU.

HOW DO I GAUGE PORTABLE SPEAKER SOUND PERFORMANCE?

Don’t listen to anything manufacturers say about power consumption. Power ratings should be in Watts (W).  Loudness should be in Decibels (dB).  Consider the distance that the manufacturer measures dB from.  Also keep in mind you can have a loud speaker that sounds like crap.  The Boombotix Boombot2 hits 87dB with a high quality recorded song which is great for a room, studio or small group.  Other manufacturers like Logitech and Jawbone make larger portable speaker systems that are louder, but a bit less portable.  Most portable speakers have Class D amps that have a high efficiency.

What other features should i look for in a portable speaker?

  • Bluetooth connectivity (at least 2.1)
  • Device compatibility.  Make sure it works with your music source.
  • Volume/Track adjustment controls
  • Connector types (most common is 8mm or 1/8″ for standard headphone jacks)
  • How many speaker drivers are there?  Is it a mono speaker or just stereo?

should you get a speaker with rechargeable batteries?

In this day and age, there is no reason to every use a speaker that uses alkaline batteries (D-Cell, AA, AAA).  These types of batteries cause a lot of material waste, they’re heavy, and they get expensive as you replace each one.  Buy a speaker with a rechargeable battery source using lightweight lithium-ion or lithium-polymer batteries.  They may cost a little bit more up front, but it will be well worth it if you really like to travel with your speaker.

How do i determine if a speaker is portable enough?

Picture yourself using the product.  What is your most practical use case is? If you are primarily using it to lug to the beach, are you the type that needs deep, rich, pumping bass or are you fine with a little bit of bump for the background?  Look at the way the speaker is transported.  Does it have a simple handle?  Does it have a clip-on design?  Is the design of the speaker conducive towards the environment that it is being placed in?  Boombotix speakers have added seal and connector covers to make them more resilient to dust and moisture.

Yellow topography Boombot

portable speaker pricing

Portable speakers range anywhere from $20-400.  When considering the pricing, be sure that you are getting value.  Look at the manufacturer warranty terms.  If you are making a substantial investment in a product, you should expect that the manufacturer will support the longevity of the product in normal working operation.  If the speaker is designed to be ultraportable, then it should be able to take a beating.  If something happens in the field (you crash, you fall, or butter fingers gets the better of you), a good manufacturer of a portable speaker system should have your back to some extent.  We have a policy called the No Matter What warranty program where we offer free repair or replacement for all of our speakers.

Also consider the build quality of the product.  Boombotix speakers are made of thick high impact ABS plastic with a durable soft touch coating.  Some cheaper speakers use thin flexible plastics which make the product less durable and even sound poor.

in summary

We hope that you find this article helpful.  We’ve spent a lot of time and thought developing portable speakers that fit our active lifestyle.  If you are looking for a larger system there are a lot of great options out there, but if you like to put your music in motion, we hope you will consider investing in a Boombotix speaker.

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