I’ve been on a bit of an audio kick recently, so when Gearzap gave me the chance to review another bluetooth speaker, I jumped at the chance. This time around, I put the KitSound BoomBar through its paces. Read on for my thoughts.
As I mentioned when I reviewed a pair of Gmyle bluetooth speakers, I’m not an audiophile, so consider my impressions to be one of an average Joe. The BoomBar is a pretty slickly packaged product. In addition to the speaker, it comes with a fairly solid carrying case, a charging cable, and a 3.5mm to 3.5mm audio cable if you want to directly connect to an iPod or other audio source (as opposed to connecting via Bluetooth). Also included was a small black plastic object about the size of a quarter. I had to read the manual to discover that this slid into a slot on the back of the speaker to stand the speaker upright.
One tip – when you get the speaker, read the manual, unlike a certain impatient writer. As noted above, it took me a few moments to figure out how to stand the speaker in an upright position. I also didn’t notice the removable lithium battery in the box, so I thought that I had a defective unit when I couldn’t get it to charge. It turns out that the error was in the space between my ears, and not in the speaker.
From a purely spec perspective, the speaker boasts a music play time of up to 10 hours. I haven’t tried it yet for ten hours, so can’t speak to battery life. I’m also using the speaker solely for audio, so I can’t speak to it’s phone capabilities. I have a philosophical aversion to making someone listen to me on a speaker phone when I’m in my office (a car is another matter, for safety purposes). The speaker does tout the ability to make calls with a cell phone, though, via Bluetooth.
I like the audio on this speaker a bit better than the audio on the Gmyle speakers that I previously reviewed. The Gmyle speakers have better separation from the left and right speakers, due to the ability to be placed apart from each other, but the BoomBar has a bit more bass, and just a richer sound overall. The difference isn’t dramatic, though, and you’re still dealing with a small speaker. Don’t expect the same sound quality that you’d get from a portable speaker that costs twice as much. I did turn up the audio to a reasonable level, though, and didn’t notice any distortion.
In addition to the richer sound, the selling point for me on this speaker, and what earned it a place on the shelf behind my desk, is its appearance. While the Gmyle speakers have a certain “look at me” characteristic to them, the BoomBar has an understated elegance to it. It is about nine inches wide, with curved lines to it. It just seems more at home in my office.
Gearzap is a U.K. site, and the BoomBar currently sells for £24.99.