For Christmas I got a few Amazon gift cards, and because these things apparently just burn a hole in my mind — I decided to buy myself a couple presents with them.
One of those was the Logitech UE Mini-Boom.
The problem I was trying to solve was how to give myself a very easy way to listen to podcasts while in the shower / getting ready in the bathroom. The rest of my place has speakers where I can be anywhere and hear them with clarity; however, the bathroom (especially with the shower running) drowns out almost all of the sound. So, I wanted something I could easily listen to while in the shower or shaving. And how’s this device solve that problem? With flying colors.
It’s a small little speaker that has a perfect balance and weight in the hand. It doesn’t feel cheap or plastic, but is wrapped in a rubber-like material that keeps it where you put it. The rubber casing also wraps around the entire speaker and is seamlessly integrated with the three large buttons on the top (volume up, volume down, and bluetooth pair). This design works great for being able to quickly adjust the volume without worrying about wet hands. The bluetooth pairing was a simple process with my iPhone and now when I turn on the speaker it usually pairs within three seconds (and notifies you with a soft alert melody). The battery icon shows up next to the phone’s bluetooth icon when paired, and the documentation says the speaker gets roughly 10 hours of battery life on each charge.1 With a roughly 50 foot bluetooth range, I can turn on the speaker, hit play on my phone, and then set my phone in my office (avoiding any potential water damage) while listening to a podcast, or music, via the speaker in the next room over.
I am extremely impressed by the sound quality that comes from such a small speaker. I have tried a variety of songs, spoken word podcasts, and different genres all at the volume I need to be able to hear it while actually in the shower — they all sound fantastic. Not just fantastic for a small speaker, but actually great by my relatively high standards. Obviously we’re not talking about audiophile quality here, but my expectations were absolutely exceeded. The treble is crisp and voices sound great, and the bass feels tuned correctly and not overpowering.2
I’m aware my personal use case for this thing is probably relatively small, but I would actually recommend it for anyone looking for a small speaker with great sound for a room that currently doesn’t have a larger / better sound-system in it. While I originally bought the device simply for the bathroom / shower scenario, what I’ve found is that I use it in the kitchen as well. It’s easier for me to grab this and set it on the counter and hit play via my phone than it is to turn on the regular sound-system that’s in the living room. If I’m going to be in that room for an extended period of time, sure, it’s worth it, but if I’m just making lunch or cooking dinner and eating? This is a far better solution.
The biggest flaw? The unboxing experience. The device hangs in this weird plastic case that you should turn upside down when opening so that it doesn’t immediately fall out. For those looking for more information, I recommend checking out the The Wirecutter for a more in-depth review.
For around 99 bucks, I absolutely recommend this little guy for any room you don’t have a more robust speaker system currently installed in but want access to your music or podcasts via bluetooth. Having gone through college with one of those iPod dock-speaker systems that sounded like it was being amplified through a tin can — I can’t believe how far the technology has come in just eight years. I would have killed for something, at this price point, in college.