Boombox with a beat

20:59, Dec 19 2012
Boombox with a beat
Sound machine: Logitech UE Boombox ($349)

Want pure, undiluted, music? Logitech reckons it has just the thing. 

A new line of Logitech UE products designed for music consumption in every possible scenario includes earphones, headphones, wireless speakers and a smart radio.

Prices range from $149 to $599, depending on the device.

Mini-me: Logitech UE 4000 headphones.

The range combines the musical know how of Ultimate Ears, which Logitech acquired in 2008 after it cornered 75 per cent of the touring artist market, with the technological nous of one of the world's best personal computer peripheral manufacturers.

I tried three devices from the new line. The most impressive was the Logitech UE Boombox, ($349) which is on my Christmas list after a couple of weeks on loan.

As its name suggests, it looks like an old-style ghetto blaster, or boombox, from the 1980s; but it has no entry point to insert a cassette or CD. That's because there are eight custom tuned drivers, two three inch woofers and two 1/2 inch tweeters inside the speaker case.


It connects to your music source, whether it's computer, tablet or smartphone, via Bluetooth radio.

After charging, you flick the power on and it makes the sound of a guitar and the Bluetooth light flashes. Once you've paired your device with the boombox, you're away.

It's all speaker, which meant I could hear it loud and clear from the other side of the house.

The device has got quite a bassy sound when it is outputting music, but the bass vanished when I tried an audio drama complete with music and sound effects.

Volume is controlled on your playback device, but in case it's not adequate there's a massive up and down button on the side in UE signature blue.

It's capable of pairing with eight Bluetooth capable devices at any one time, with up to three of then connected at the same instance. To switch source you press pause on one paired device and press play on the other.

It has got a six-hour battery, too, which is great if you want to take this beast on the road.

The Logitech UE 6000 headphones ($349) I tried, for example, unfold like sunglasses from their pouch.

The black headphones with blue highlights are powered by a pair of AA batteries that slip into a compartment on one of the plush memory-foam headphones. No batteries, no sound.

The set comes with a cord that plugs into the headphones at one end and the music source via a 3.5mm jack the other. The best thing about that is if you get your hand tangled in the cord while you are walking, for example, the cord just comes unplugged instead of yanking on the headset.

You can't fault the sound on these headphones or the smaller grab-and=go style Logitech UE 4000 headphones ($149).

They're smaller, so there's no need to fold them, and they fit within a zippered, microfibre-lined travel pouch.

They have an on-cord microphone and controls so that you can answer calls on your smartphone or change tracks and adjust the volume.

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