By Dig Om on Sat, 02/15/2014
I was recently given a BOOMBOTIX REX ($119.99-$129.99) trial unit to experiment with. I warned the folks at BOOMBOTIX that I was going to be rough on it, but I honestly had no idea just how roughly that little speaker was going to be treated. You see, when it arrived, my infant son instantly appropriated it as his own—he LOVED the silky smooth, grippy texture the speaker had, and he also completely dug the cool geometric shape of the thing. It was light enough and small enough that his little baby hands could hold it and turn it over and over, while I tried to keep him from gnawing on it with his new front teeth. Read on to find out just how the REX fared under the baby torture test...
We spend a lot of time outside, my baby boy and me, and we bring the REX with us on most of our excursions into nature. Gosh, is he ever hard on that little Bluetooth speaker. He throws it onto the rocks, he drools all over it, he buries it in the sand, and the REX keeps on pumping out great sound. I've been impressed. Obviously it’s a rugged little speaker, but it also has excellent audio output, especially for a speaker so small!
The REX has two speaker drivers and a bass radiator for delivering that extra thunder. Aside from the fact that I could hear it when my son had buried it under sand and rocks, it also put out clear and crisp tunes when unobstructed out in the open. There's easy access to control buttons on the top side of the speaker that allow both playback control as well as interaction with Siri. It's available in a variety of modern artistic and creative designs and the painted, front screen grill can be swapped out for other grill designs. All of the ports are sealed with easy to open flaps made of silicone.
Its built-in belt clip makes it super portable. I would wear it clipped onto one of the pockets on my cargo pants and it managed to stay put as we romped and bounced around some pretty gnarly terrain. My boy’s probably going to be a mountain climber before he can walk, and he's going to remember his childhood in the wild with the BOOMBOTIX REX providing the tunes to his first adventures. It's a sweet little speaker and it's providing the soundtrack for some priceless experiences between a pa and his son.
- Great volume for such a small Bluetooth speaker. The REX is loud enough to fill a small room with distortion-free sound.
- Rugged construction provides water, shock, dirt (and baby drool) resistance.
- IP53 rating, suitable for light rain or snow and limited expisure to moisture and liquid.
- Siri integration is a real plus. It also has a mic for speakerphone function.
- Artsy designs for the young and young at heart.
- Perfect for a day on the beach or for a college dorm room, ideal for cruising around on your bike or hangin' at the skatepark.
- Belt clip keeps the speaker present and accounted for.
- Speakers can be “daisy chained” for true surround-sound, stereo performance.
- One hour quick charge lasts for about 6 hours of use.
- While the silicone flaps covering the ports are protective, keeping liquid and dirt at bay, I would really like to see a heavier duty rubber material used for these protective covers. Something that fits snugly into the port to more effectively keep debris out. I felt like the ports didn't consistently seal securely.
My boy and I love this speaker. The kid sure has put it through some hard paces, and it's held up amazingly well to the kind of abuse that only a baby boy growing up in the outdoors can subject it to. The REX rocks! I'd recommend it for any one looking for a progressive and stylish rugged Bluetooth speaker, one that should last for years of hard use.
Sound output: 4.5 out of 5 Stars
Rugged durability: 3.5 out of 5 Stars
Design and style: 4 out of 5 Stars
Overall rating: 4 out of 5 Stars