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Logitech Mini Boombox (black) review: Logitech Mini Boombox (black)

Logitech Mini Boombox (black)

David Carnoy Executive Editor / Reviews
Executive Editor David Carnoy has been a leading member of CNET's Reviews team since 2000. He covers the gamut of gadgets and is a notable reviewer of mobile accessories and portable audio products, including headphones and speakers. He's also an e-reader and e-publishing expert as well as the author of the novels Knife Music, The Big Exit and Lucidity. All the titles are available as Kindle, iBooks, Nook e-books and audiobooks.
Expertise Mobile accessories and portable audio, including headphones, earbuds and speakers Credentials
  • Maggie Award for Best Regularly Featured Web Column/Consumer
David Carnoy
3 min read

Jawbone has had some success in the market with the Jambox, a small Bluetooth speaker with speakerphone capabilities. Designed to augment the sound of smartphones and tablets such the iPad, the nice thing about the Jambox is that it plays loud and takes up little room in your bag so it makes for an excellent traveling companion.

7.3

Logitech Mini Boombox (black)

The Good

Designed to augment the sound of tablets and smartphones, the <b>Logitech Mini Boombox</b> is a very compact--and cute--Bluetooth speaker that has a built-in rechargeable battery, speakerphone capabilities, a line input, and touch controls. Its sound is impressive for its tiny size.

The Bad

The Mini Boombox can't handle heavy bass at higher volumes and the glossy finish is prone to showing scratches.

The Bottom Line

The Logitech Mini Boombox Bluetooth speaker doesn't sound quite as good as the Jawbone Jambox--or look quite as slick--but it can play loud and has identical features for about half the price.

Logitech's Mini Boombox does exactly the same thing as the $175 Jambox, and while it doesn't do it quite as well--and isn't as slickly designed--it only costs half as much.

The Mini Boombox is smaller than the Jambox and about the same size and weight (1 pound) as the Monster iClarityHD, which also sells for around $100. The Mini Boombox has touch-sensitive buttons on the top of speaker and an auxiliary input for plugging in audio devices that aren't Bluetooth-enabled (optional cable not included).


Touch controls on the Mini Boombox's top are illuminated.

The first word that comes to mind when you see this is "cute." Yes, this little guy has an understated but perky design that's sure to get some curious glances from onlookers. My only gripe is that the dark, glossy plastic finish on top of the unit seems prone to showing scratches and fingerprints, so you'll have to be careful to protect the speaker or else it may start to look a little beat up. Alas, Logitech doesn't include any sort of cheap pouch or cover for storing the device.

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.


The power, line input, and USB charging port are found on the back of the Mini Boombox.

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.

Unsurprisingly, where it sounded best was on acoustic material and lighter fare. For example, the live acoustic version of Adele's "Turning Tables" sounded just fine and made you think you were listening to a larger speaker.

Really, that's all there is to the Mini Boombox. Oh, yeah, it does get up to 10 hours of battery life before having to be recharged. And I found that it worked pretty well as a speakerphone, though you'll want to keep it within a few feet of you when talking into the integrated microphone (Bluetooth speakers generally allow you to stream sound from a device up to 30 feet away).

In the end, I'm not going to call this a total bargain at $90 online; I'd prefer to see it cost closer to $75. But as I said, it's half the price of the Jawbone Jambox and its sound is about 80 percent as good. That adds up to a pretty good value--and a nice little traveling companion.

7.3

Logitech Mini Boombox (black)

Score Breakdown

Design 8Features 7Performance 7