Logitech UE Boombox review: Logitech UE Boombox

The only criticism I offer Logitech is that a protective carrying case should come with the speaker. The handle on top makes it comfortable to carry the Boombox around the house to the back yard or to a friend's party, but it stands to get dinged up in the course of wider travel.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Still, the build standards of the Boombox are much tougher than those of the Wireless Boombox. The die-cast aluminum grille protects the speaker from dust and other objects threatening harm, while the whole bottom section is wrapped in thick rubber that echoes bass and stops it from walking around on a smooth tabletop.

Performance
Logitech and Ultimate Ears worked together to co-engineer the sound of the Boombox, and the result reaches far louder than the Wireless Boombox for iPad. Whereas the Wireless Boombox lacked sonic details in low-end amplification, the Boombox's four custom-tuned 2.75-inch passive radiators and the rubber casing surrounding them delivers a deeper and more resonant helping of bass.

Dual half-inch tweeters command the treble spectrum and two 3-inch woofers balance the midsection with tighter high-level frequencies compared with competing Bluetooth speakers like the SuperTooth Disco and the Jawbone Big Jambox. Still, keep in mind that you'll lose some detail in the wireless compression process -- this is Bluetooth technology, after all.

Regardless, CNET editors felt that the Boombox delivered impressive performance for its size and price in my office jury test. Using a variety of sources and artists ranging from jazz to punk and yes, even dubstep, the speakers produced tones with no noticeable audible distortion with smooth response throughout the frequency range.

You can control the volume with both the handset and the unit itself, and believe me when I say that the speaker gets quite loud -- if you're shopping for a party maker, this is it.

Despite its near-premium sound design, the UE Boombox still bows down in front of CNET's reigning champ in the Bluetooth portable speaker category, the Bose SoundLink. Despite its shocking price tag, the SoundLink continues to excel in both volume capacity and sound performance that nearly has us disbelieving its Bluetooth connectivity.

Both speakers can hold their bass without distorting, but a side-by-side comparison has the Logitech UE Boombox sounding slightly more washed out. Regardless, if you'd rather save $50 and prefer the design of this UE speaker instead, you'll still enjoy much better sound quality than your average Bluetooth speaker -- it's just not the best money can buy.

Conclusion
The Logitech UE Boombox is just as capable in a backyard dinner party as it is in a room as a standalone desktop music player. Its generous 6-hour rechargeable battery and sleek handle let you cut the cord completely and enjoy music anywhere around the house, and its relatively durable chassis is easy for anyone to navigate. Throw in the ability to connect up to three devices simultaneously (with only one actually playing music, of course), and I recommend the Logitech UE Boombox for anyone shopping for a versatile, simple speaker that looks just as good as it sounds.

Editors' Top Picks

 

ARTICLE DISCUSSION

Conversation powered by Livefyre

Where to Buy See All

Logitech UE Boombox

Part Number: CNETUEBOOMBOX
Low Price: $149.93 See all prices

Quick Specifications See All

  • Wireless Technology Bluetooth
  • Amplification Type active
  • Connectivity Technology Wireless
  • Speaker Type Portable speaker
About The Author

Justin Yu covers headphones and peripherals for CNET. When he's not wading through Web gulch or challenging colleagues to typing tests, you can find him making fun of technology with Jeff Bakalar every afternoon on The 404 show.