The Logitech UE Boom is the older brother and next model up from the UE Mini Boom (which we recently reviewed) Bluetooth speaker. Retailing for around $199, it is larger, heavier and packs a great deal of sound into a small bit of space.
Now that we have had the time to bounce back and forth between the two speakers for some time now, we have been able to enjoy each speaker’s advantages. Where the Mini Boom focused mostly on a “lot of volume” in “a tiny speaker”, the Boom focuses on that plus range. It covers a great range of what sounds (by ear) to be 125hz to 20khz (advertised as 90Hz – 20kHz, in which our spectrum analyzer agrees).
Music is very clean, clear and warm; and generally reminds you of something you would get with a company like Sonos or a Paradigm (if Paradigm made small Bluetooth speakers at least). The volume is louder than the Mini Boom and it features 360-degree coverage, allowing you to fill a room no matter where you place it. We find that it sounds best when you keep it raised to the same level your ears will be in the room, although it still sounds good sitting on the floor or over-head.
For the price tag, this speaker is one of the dominating members in its category. Your ears will most likely agree. In our testing of it, we found that it not only out-performed speakers like the HDMX Jam Party but it also out-performed Bose’s Soundlink speaker which runs $100 more.
The design of the speaker is a nice modern contemporary (similar to the Mini Boom) look. The top, bottom, and part of the surround is a tough rubber material that feels like it will provide many years of use before it begins to show any sign of wear (as long as you aren’t abnormally rough on it). The majority of the surround is a tough acoustic skin (mesh) with plasma coating which allows the speaker to be water-resistant, protecting it from accidental splashes. It comes in multiple colors (moss, blue, red, pink, vibe, and white), stands about 7″ tall and about 2.5″ in diameter.
Controls are simple with volume up and down on the side and power and Bluetooth control on the top. At the bottom of the speaker, you find a micro-USB charging port and a 3.5mm input for non-Bluetooth devices.
Battery life is great with the Boom, offering up to 15 hours of music playback on a single charge. It also shuts itself off if it hasn’t received any signal for a while to save its battery. This means it can be used for just about any day’s activities and not have to be recharged until the end of the day (or after a few days….or a week).
It supports NFC for quick and easy Bluetooth pairing (with NFC-supported devices) as well as normal over the air manual Bluetooth pairing of course. The range claims 50 feet but just like the Mini, we have been able to walk further away from it.
Inside the package, you find the normal items including the speaker, instructions, warranty information, charger and micro-USB cable. The charger and cable or color themed to match the speaker color you choose and the cable is flat.
The speaker also features a small loop on the bottom so that it can be attached to something, let it be your belt loop for travel or to hang it outside.
Just like the Mini Boom, it can be controlled via a free app by Logitech (currently only available for iOS and Android) that allows you to pair two speakers together for stereo sound and greater coverage. The app is not required to use the speaker. It simply allows you to adjust the EQ a little, pair speakers together and use the speaker for an alarm clock.
We love this speaker. It is loud, it has a really nice sound which allows it to compete with portable speakers in the higher price range. For $199, we find this to be more than pleasing and can see a lot of people getting a lot of enjoyment out of it. It is built tough and the battery lasts forever. We wound up giving it a 9.5/10 for its price range/category. Logitech really nailed this one. They also took home our Editors Choice award.
Want to know how you can win the UE Boom? Simply like us on Facebook and/or follow us on Twitter and then click on “contact us” above. For the subject enter “UE Boom Giveaway” and include the link to your Facebook or Twitter profile in the body along with your name, phone number and address. We will be announcing the winner on Twitter next week, and you will be notified by email. Good luck!
Are you a manufacturer or distributor that would like us to test something out for review? Contact us and we can let you know where to send the product and we will try it out.