To recharge the battery, you use the provided USB cable, which you can either connect to a computer or the included power adapter.
Pairing the speaker was simple enough: you just tap the Bluetooth icon on top of the unit and search for Bluetooth devices on your phone or tablet from within the Bluetooth menu. Once it connects, you're ready to start streaming music or a movie soundtrack to the speaker.
Look, I'm not going to lie to you and say this sounds great. But when you get into the tiny speaker category, just sounding OK is a feat, and when I turned the Mini Boombox on and raised the volume it definitely sounded better than I thought it would. It can play pretty loudly and puts out a lot more sound than the internal speakers of your typical smartphone or tablet.
I found the sound to be a little warmer and more open than that of the Monster iClarityHD, which comes off a bit tinny. The one thing that the Mini Boombox can't handle is a lot of bass at higher volumes. I fed it a heavy bass track from our CNET headphone test disc (created by CNET contributor Steve Guttenberg), and the sound got very crunchy and the speaker literally started to shake and move on the shelf I had it sitting on.