Boombotix x Fathom 3D Printed Cast

3D printing

3d printed cast empowers patients with analytics and audio

Once upon a time when I first moved to San Francisco, a guy by the name of Mike North (aka Dr. North) helped me out by offering me a desk in the corner of his Mission SF loft. North is always on the bleeding edge of technology which is one of the reasons I was excited to work alongside him. After giving a speech recently, he broke a leg. Rather than succumbing to sedentary life and adjusting his busy travel schedule, he turned it into a project.

Fathom Studios in Oakland helped out with the scanning and printing of the cast. Intel helped supply some of the electronic test boards. We just donated some Boombots to amp up the awesome. Check out the video below for more on the project. CNET recently covered the project and North plans on open sourcing the project with info on Instructables.

Boombot PRO Design Breakdown

BoombotPRO-Features

The Boombot PRO has a little more to it than just good looks and fancy zinc trim. Chris and I have worked on this design since the first Boombot REX came out in 2013. We’re going to share our process so you can understand what really makes the PRO our best of class.

ACOUSTICS

While the REX sounds awesome and has a ton of punch, we put a big emphasis on trying to bring the bass response to life on this unit. We were capped out on the 36mm drivers on the Boombot REX. We bumped up the speaker sizes to 40mm and wattage went from 3W to 5W. The larger drivers had stronger bass response, so we were able to do away with the passive radiator in favor of increasing the air space in the speaker cabinet. When we saw the impact we were having by increasing air volume, we rounded out the front of the speaker housing to buy even more. The result was an increase in bass response of over 50%. The moment you turn the PRO on, you’ll notice a fuller, deeper and richer sound than the Boombot REX.

Pro Exploded

INTERNAL POWER

Internally, we have two high fidelity drivers pushing a lot more power than the Boombot REX Managing the power and reducing noise is key as you add power. Rather than driving two speakers with one amp, we built in dual amps that drive each speaker separately. This not only allowed us to push a true stereo configuration but it also improved the clarity on each driver.

HYBRID PLAYBACK

The Boombot PRO incorporates hybrid playback with Chambers mode as a standard feature. Having 2GB of internal storage allows the Boombot PRO to operate completely untethered from a handset. We thought this was especially useful for applications where we’d have exposure to water.

WATERPROOFING

On the Boombot PRO, you’ll notice the texture is slightly different from our other products. The entire outside is done in a rubber over-mold. This is a process where you double-tool the mold. While this process is more expensive in tooling, it also ensures that the housing is full protected from elements. The new double-tooled mold also increased the housing structure and air sealing which ultimately had a positive impact on acoustics as well. The process makes the Boombot PRO more drop resistant than anything we’ve ever made, and of course, fully waterproofed. You will notice that we’ve eliminated the beloved 3.5mm auxiliary jack. Part of this choice was to make waterproofing easier, and part of it was just because it’s 2015- we’re dedicated to wireless.

FUTURE IMPROVEMENTS

At Boombotix, we’re never really done with our design.. That’s prompted us to look for future weight reduction plans. The door that currently covers the micro-USB does the job of sealing, but we’re also looking to make that a little easier to snap into place. If you have any other suggestions on design refinements for the future Boombot PRO, please let us know!

Boombot PRO portable

Boombotix Teams Up with Benny Gold on Build A Bot

Back in November, we announced the launch of our Build-A-Bot customizer tool which allows users to create a unique Boombot REX by mix-and-matching the speaker’s grills, bezel, clip and body color. Additionally, Build-A-Bot users are able to upload pictures directly from their smartphones and print it on a Boombot REX’s grill.

Now, we are stoked to announce that we have teamed up with San Francisco based designer, Benny Gold, to bring an even more personal, ultraportable music experience. Benny has taken his brand from a simple sticker to now being one of the most celebrated street-wear companies of our generation. Having recent collaborations with JanSport, Zumiez and The Hundreds; we are excited to be partnered with The Gold Family.

You can now choose from three limited edition “Stay Gold” designs by visiting boombotix.com/build-a-bot

We are also running a really cool promotion to win a FREE “Stay Gold” branded Boombot. Along with the speaker, we are giving away 2 Hats, 2 beanies, 2 shirts and 2 pairs of socks. Enter your email here for a chance to win. – Good luck!

Boombotix Applications Test Engineering Reports

boombotix-rex-portable-action-sports-speaker2 This summer we brought in an engineering student from France (Francois Morenne) to partake in putting together formalized applications testing. I used to to similar types of testing for the LED lighting company I worked for. I showed him how to design an experiment and formulate a report as part of his internship program.

In my previous gig, it was often helpful for our sales team to demonstrate how thoroughly we tested our products. We have one customer using our product in the medical treatment field so the demands of our testing standards had to go beyond standard certifications.

Some things that customers like to see include accelerated aging, runtime, vibration, and impact testing. This is what really sets some products apart; We believe a true test demonstrates real life performance versus a make-believe marketing spec. Most brands are throwing out outrageous figures that are not substantiated in test. They sucker consumers with big promises on runtime and falsified claims. Since we are running these reports, we thought it’d be a good idea to publish them here.

Drop testing

On this test, we drop the product from a fixed height numerous times and do a qualitative analysis on how well the unit holds up. We found that the tuffSKIN protective wrap significantly improves the units resilience to repeated impact.

View the Drop Test Applications Report

future tests

We are currently doing some runtime tests, water resistance and accelerated aging tests. I’ll continue to post our findings on this article as the data becomes available. I hope that this is a great step into offering the most pure transparency with our fans and customers.

We got so wet for this ultraportable speaker

boombotix launches the 2014 boombot REX

The moment we released the Boombot REX, it immediately changed the direction and design language of our brand. It was a product with a radical departure from the original creature-based Skullyboom. The new Boombot REX represents the fourth generation in the Boombot legacy with each model being significantly better than the last. A number of features on this product are the result of maintaining an ongoing dialogue with our customers/fans. Some features like the new $99 price point are injected for the sake of awesomeness.

In this article, I’m going to break down some of the subtle differences that make the new Boombot REX one of the top portable speakers on the market.

about the design

The core technology of the Boombot REX remains unchanged, but there a some subtleties that many of us will enjoy. My personal favorite is the enlarged battery pushing a fifty percent longer runtime than the older model. We had to completely redesign the internals of the product to allocate spacing for this larger battery. This was quite challenging considering how compact the older model already was. We moved the connectors to the sides of the product to make the more accessible while also freeing up the entire bottom of the product for battery.

You will see four small screws on top of the unit. These screws create pressure on the silicone button module that prevent water from entering the housing. By moving the button module to the top of the unit and increasing the button size, we’ve made this a product that can withstand the elements along with our clumsy frozen fingers.

product-rex-simple-playback-controls-40911ed0b91647fae6beef252264ded4

 

One of the most common questions I’ve been getting is, “does it sound better?” Why yes it does. Our team has always been a fan of using subtle filters to get the most out of a small form factor. We pride ourselves on power-to-size ratio. The new 2014 Boombot REX has an active limiter that kicks in on the upper end of bass-rich songs to reduce distortion by over 70%.

The geometry of the new Boombot REX remains unchanged. Most parts are fully interchangeable including the tuffSKINS. It’s what’s on the inside that counts.

between the lines

If you ever want to pass the rock to a friend, the new Boombot REX has a feature where you can press and hold the ‘+’ and ‘-‘ buttons to re-engage pairing to a new phone. Sometimes its the little things.