Isn’t retro a great thing? Boomboxes might be considered a thing of the past, but with new upgrades, they are making a comeback, and with vengeance. Bringing the portability of a mp3 player but packing the sound punch of a full-on stereo, best boombox let you bring the party with you.
From dorms, offices, and picnics to beaches and kitchens, you have a choice of multiple places and formats to play your music on. However there so many boomboxes out there in the market today, each model with a different kind of user personality in mind. In this boombox buying guide 2017, we’ll give you every bit of information you need to find the boombox that fits your style, needs, and budget. Let’s start from the beginning.
We all know that music is important for our emotional well-being which is the reason investing in a boombox is something worth considering. To get the maximum benefits out of this investment, however, one has to ensure that you can get the different boombox available in the market. Without an idea of how to select the best unit, the chances are that you will not gain the maximum benefits out of your investments. As such, we are here to help you select the right boombox so that you can take advantage of the best sound quality and value for your money. In this article, are the best 10 boombox reviews 2018, and a guideline to help you select the perfect boombox. Have a look at it and be sure to have an easy time once you set out to make your purchase.
What is a Boombox?
Map Of Contents
- What is a Boombox?
- Top 10 Best Boombox List
- Best Sony Boombox
- Best Home Boombox
- Best Portable Boombox
- Best Compact boombox
- Best Big Boom Box
- Tips to consider to select the best boombox
- Types of Boomboxes
- The Advent of Portable Stereo Systems
- Best Way to Finding the Right Boombox
- What to Look for When Choosing the Best Boombox
- Origins of the Boombox
- Final Word
A boombox is ideally a portable, transistorized cassette player or recorder, with FM/AM radio, loudspeakers, and an amplifier. It originally started out as an audio appliance that supports multiple uses and functions, and it made its name during the 1970s and 1980s. however, with the constant advancement in technology, it has gradually evolved to what it is today.
It’s normally designed with a handle, which ideally enforces its portability feature. The term “boom” box coins the fact that it is able to produce loud sounds with the help of its loudspeaker. In addition, it has an array of functions starting from playing CDs and cassette tapes to recording audio and playing FM and AM radio.
Top 10 Best Boombox List
To help you make the right choice, we have reviewed the best boomboxes based on their features and pricing. We have also added a quick rundown of their significant features, their pros, and their cons so that you can evaluate each model.
Tips to consider to select the best boombox
Now that you have an idea of the best five boomboxes available in the market, how do you ensure that you get the right one based on your needs? Let’s have a brief discussion of the factors that you need to consider to make sure that you get the best boombox.
How heavy or light, is your boombox? You will need to consider the portability of your unit especially when you need to get one that you can carry along. Ensure that you can manage its weight and size. Also, check if it includes a built-in handle that will make it easy for you to carry it around.
- Power source requirement
Apart from portability, you will need to determine the ways by which you can power your boombox. As such, if you intend to use your boombox outdoors most of the times, you will need to get one that can support a battery. Moreover, it has to have a battery that you can rely on based on the hours you intend to use it. So, ensure that you can determine that too.
- AM/FM station memory presets
It is likely that you will mostly use your boombox to listen to FM and AM stations. To save your time trying to scan for the available channels, be sure to invest in a radio that includes memory presets. With these, you can rest assured to have an easy selection process of your favorite stations.
- Bluetooth connectivity
Does the unit you intend to purchase, connect to Bluetooth? This is an important factor to consider when you do not like bringing your mobile devices to your place of work. As such, when you want to listen to favorite tunes from your Bluetooth enabled device, be sure to get a unit that will allow a Bluetooth connection. This mostly applies for those working in construction areas or places with lots of dirt and debris.
What devices or discs does your unit support? You will need to get a boombox that will support the different media sources you intend to use. If you plan to use your CDs, MP3 digital devices, or cassettes, ensure that the unit will allow a connection to those devices.
This factor goes without saying. You will need to make sure that your boombox features high-quality construction materials. It should not drop on day one and end up breaking or dis-functioning. So, get to know about its construction, especially when you intend to use it in an environment will a lot of activities going on.
Types of Boomboxes
One of the defining features in all boomboxes is that they are all portable. But in most cases, that’s where the similarity hits the wall. The modern boomboxes come in a wide variety of capabilities, designs, colors, sizes, and uses. In fact, there’s a boom box designed for almost any kind of application a user might need, from high end devices that could replace home stereo systems, to water resistant and shock-proof units that could withstand hard tosses. The following are the most common types of boomboxes.
The boombox did play an important role in the iconic cultural explosion of the 1980s. That’s why they are generally recognized as a symbol of this period, which has made the original vintage boomboxes valuable collector’s item. Some auction sites have a number of listings of vintage boomboxes that can be quite difficult to purchase from other places.
These devices keep the classic design, and remind any music enthusiasts of the early hip hop days, and the iconic time in history where music was more of a personal expression and was played for everyone to listen to. If you are buying a vintage boombox, it pays to do some research first to find more about the history of the item, and check the legitimacy of the seller preferably through online reviews.
Cassette Tape Boomboxes
Although CDs replaced the cassette tapes, some people still maintain large collections of cassette tapes. Of course, the thought of having to repurchase all the music on cassette tapes is not a valid option for most people, especially if it’s a large collection, and due to time and cost considerations when it comes to replacing each of the tape.
The most effective solution here is to have a boombox that features cassette tape playback. Since the contemporary boomboxes are designed with versatility and functionality in mind, most of them are designed to play cassette tapes, with some coming with advanced CD writing capabilities to allow the user to not only play their cassette tapes, but also record music on CDs at the same time. this allows the users to update the music on the more durable CDs, without having to incur the high costs of repurchasing the entire collection.
Some boomboxes are designed to support multiple cassette players, which allows the user to ideally record on one cassette tape from another one. This can come in handy for the people who need to keep a collection of cassette tapes but still need to transfer some music onto the newer, more efficient range of storage media.
The support of CDs essentially revolutionized the entire music industry, as it gave the music listeners a storage option that was durable, resisted rough handling and heat, while still providing high sound fidelity levels during playback. The Compact Disk boombox was really a revolution to a revolutionary device, and successfully opened up a whole new avenue for music playback.
Keep in mind that the cassette tape collections had their share of drawbacks that CDs didn’t. for starters, the cassettes had a thin magnetic tape that basically spooled around two wheels in a plastic housing. The magnetic tape was highly vulnerable to damage from the elements and heat, and a small part of the tape remained completely unprotected as that was the portion that came in contact with the head unit. Any form of damage on the tape could make the whole thing completely useless.
On the other hand, compact discs had none of such limiting factors. The music was essentially stored in some material on the disc, which was protected by several layers of lacquer. With the CD, a laser beam is passed through and it reflects the data onto a special sensor that converts it to music. Unlike with the tape, there are no moving parts that came into contact with the CD, and the CD would play music even after rough handling, provided that the lacquer surface was not heavily scratched.
Another major benefit of the CD was that it offered an easier way to store music. The thinness of the CD allowed it to accommodate large music collections that could be handily kept in a CD wallet, which would store huge collections of CDs and enable easier accessibility by the user.
MP3 technology is one of the milestones achieved by the boombox, together with the advent of the technology that allowed boomboxes to play rich sound quality from reduced speaker sizes. The product of these developments is the MP3 boombox. The MP3 capability allowed the users to carry their boomboxes around without having to bring along their compact discs and cassette tapes whenever they needed to move from one place to another with their music.
The technology essentially allowed users to compress and record music on small MP3 devices that could essentially store large music collections and play the music on small MP3 capable devices that could play the music via headphones, earphones and external speakers virtually anywhere. This way, the user was free to bring along their music to school, work, trips, at the gym, while traveling, and at the track while exercising.
This revolutionary technology paid a huge role in paving the way for truly portable music that could be stored in a format that was less susceptible to damage and couldn’t be lost. Users could now store their music collections on their computers and other portable devices and could back up their music without needing more space than a typical hard drive. Obviously, the boombox was reinvented once more, so that it could take advantage of the new technology and adapt to its use.
The MP3 boomboxes were designed in such a way that they could accept MP3 input from various devices and play the music via its speakers. Other manufacturers designed boomboxes that featured docking stations for various MP3 players, which would allow the user to dock the smaller device onto the boombox, which would then act as a set of speakers that were controlled by the MP3 device. Some of the other MP3 boomboxes came with features such as cassette playback, CD playback, and MP3 playback functionality together, allowing them to play music from any of the media functionality and then record on another.
Currently, the many different variations of boomboxes that are available in the market are staggering. As we’ve discussed, the boombox originally started out as a device that gave people the freedom to enjoy their music regardless of where they went, and being able to enjoy the music as loud as necessary. the device became the vehicle for the urban youth to express themselves, and as a tool to help the upcoming artists to find a musical niche, and share their talent with the world around them.
Over time, the boombox has changed styles and shapes many times, seen a decline in use for a given period, and then resurge once again. Nonetheless, it has never really disappeared from our culture completely. It’s ideally a device that is redesigned every now and then to leverage new technologies, and utilize the latest music tools available as they are invented. It’s ability to adapt to the changing needs of the users is what has kept the boombox an essential, and convenient device that will always have a special place in the heart of music enthusiasts.
The Advent of Portable Stereo Systems
Eventually, cities began passing noise ordinances prohibiting the playing of loud music on the street corners. With the ability to play loud music now prohibited, the popularity of the boombox started waning, as they were being replaced by the smaller, more portable devices that used earphones or headphones, which allowed users to enjoy music without disturbing other people. Nonetheless, as we are going to see, the boombox was not fated to disappear altogether.
The advent of the personal stereo system that users could carry from one location to another remained popular. Nonetheless, although the compact music players had replaced the boombox as the most popular devices, they did meet the needs for users who still need to play loud music in a portable stereo that could be played on in their own homes.
But through the years, the boombox has proven it’s still needed and quite functional, even in the millennial age. In fact, it is a common sight in most electronic stores, and is one of the most preferred audio player for outdoor activities. The designs are not significantly far from the models released in the golden boombox years, though the modern models are more advanced, and come with features that are common in the high-end music systems. They typically come in a variety of sizes and shapes, and produce high quality sound in a more compact and portable size.
Best Way to Finding the Right Boombox
Whether you are looking to purchase your first boombox or you are looking to replace your old boombox, this section will guide you into finding the Top Rated boombox, and answer some of the questions you might have about boomboxes.
The boombox is highly portable and can create loud sounds, meaning that if you are in a large open area, the music can be heard without a problem. Some features are specially included to enhance its portability. In most cases, it’s easy of hand-carry a boombox with its handle, since it’s relatively very light. It also has an inbuilt battery, to make sure that users are able to enjoy their music even in places where it might be hard to find a power outlet.
Most boomboxes come with a dual power source feature, which allows it to be connected to the power outlets for indoor use, while the batteries can be used for the outdoor activities. So, whether you’re a music lover who likes to have good background music outdoors, or a dancer who needs to practice a performance outside, boomboxes can be quite useful. But how do you go about buying one?
What to Look for When Choosing the Best Boombox
The market is currently flooded with boomboxes of different sizes, shapes, and styles. Naturally, you would want to choose the Good boombox you can find. However, the many different options available can make the process overwhelming and quite confusing. As a general rule of thumb, no single brand can fit the definition of “best” for every user. As such, the Top class boombox depends on the user needs and features needed. However, there are certain qualities that you should pay careful attention to, that apply for a proper boombox.
Although a good boombox doesn’t need to have a lot of features, what you want and what you need a boombox for should determine what kind of features you will be looking for. Ideally, all boomboxes do the same thing, though the quality will not be the same. This accounts for a major difference in their prices across the board. But regardless of your budget, here are the things you should look out for:
Modern boomboxes come fitted with programmable settings, remote controls, detachable portable MP3 players, waterproofing, and other nifty add-ons that can add a whole new dimension in the meaning of portable sound entertainment. Ensure that the model you choose come with the features you deem essential for your personal needs. As a rule of thumb, the more the features a boombox has, the better it is.
- Power: Most boomboxes have AC adapters, but as we mentioned earlier, some take D-batteries or feature rechargeable ones for use away from the wall socket. For those that need a boombox mostly for outdoor use, then you want to make sure that the battery life lasts long enough, if the batteries are rechargeable or replaceable. Keep in mind that buying disposable batteries every once in a while, could really add up the costs, and you should ideally invest in a boombox that uses rechargeable to help you avoid all the repeated expenses.
- Station Memory: Having a few in-built presets is very convenient and it would be quite silly to have a boombox that lacks presets at the touch of a button. With station Memory preset, you can store and access your favorite radio stations at the touch of a button.
- Sound quality: while this is not supposed to serve as a full home entertainment system, good boomboxes should produce quality sound. Small speakers won’t produce rich sound, don’t let anyone fool you. But in general, the more watts and the more bass boosting technology in a boombox, the more beefier and higher the quality of sound it will produce.
- Bluetooth: Just in case Bluetooth connectivity is of utmost importance for you, or if you don’t want to connect your phone or computer to your speaker via cable all the time, then make sure it’s present.
- CD Player: In case you still have some CDs lying around or would like to record music on CDs, make sure that the unit comes with CD-R/RW capabilities, to make sure that it can read and write CDs directly without needing other peripherals.
- FM/AM Tuning: this is a rather standard feature in any boombox regardless of how old it is, allowing you to surf the airwaves at your leisure. The newer digital tuners let you get the number just right as you flip through the channels, instead of hoping the needle will land close enough without the static.
- Satellite: Although this is not that much of a common feature, some may come with built-in satellite radio, which allows you to connect to your subscription service virtually anywhere you go. The subscriptions are however sold separately and may require monthly fees.
- MP3/iPod: In case you want extra connectivity besides Bluetooth, most boomboxes have the auxiliary cable options, where you simply plug in your phone, tablet, mp3 player, iPod, etc. to a headphone jack connected to your boombox and play your tunes.
In any sound system or device, the sound quality of the audio output is among the first things that need to be judged. Of course, the audio output of a boombox can’t be compared to that of a home theatre or cinema speakers. Nonetheless, the best boombox should produce sound that’s loud and rich enough, but at the same time not compromise the quality of the sound by distorting it. High quality sound is often associated with high number of watts and the incorporation of bass-boosting technology into the boombox.
Since the boombox is most likely going to be used for outdoor activities, it’s highly prone to damage from various elements. Unlike when it’s safely kept inside the house, the outdoors exposes it to weather elements and roughing up ideally caused by its mobile nature, frequent handling, and placements on different types of surfaces. In order to get a durable boombox that will give you a longer service life, it’s best to find one that is heavy duty, waterproof, shockproof, or one that’s made from high quality materials and parts.
Size and Portability
Since the boombox is going to be your preferred outdoor sound system due to its portability, you need to keep in mind several factors to enhance this feature. Weight is one of them; obviously, the lighter the boombox the more portable it will be. heavier units will be significantly more tedious and burdensome to carry around.
The battery is another factor to keep in mind, since you are not always going to find power outlets while you are on the go. It’s, therefore, necessary to get a unit with a large enough rechargeable battery. Keep in mind that larger batteries may translate to more weight, and you need to find the unit that strikes the perfect balance between the two. The other factor is the handle, which can come in handy when transporting and carry around your boombox.
The features mentioned above are not necessarily the only things that make up a good boombox. The boombox should come at a justifiable price, preferably bringing all the necessary features one would need in a boombox at an affordable price. But, affordability is subjective, and depend on the situation and the customer.
That’s why it’s very important to have a budget that states the amount you are willing to spend on a boombox, and if you are willing to add more to get some extra features. As you go through your search, it’s always good to go through different products within your price range instead of sticking to one or two brands. Also, be sure to compare different stores, since some could be offering discounts or sales at the time of your purchase.
But take care not to exceed your budget. It could be tempting, but what’s a best boombox if you exceed your budget? A smart purchase is one that you can comfortably afford, without having to sacrifice on the rest of your expenses. Keep your budget within your means.
Origins of the Boombox
Handheld and portable radios were released in the market for the first time in the late 1950s, and it only took a short while before technology backed by consumer demand led to the invention of portable stereo system. 1969 saw the invention of the boombox by Philips in the Netherlands. This invention combined the portable radio, loudspeakers, a cassette player, and the ability to play music at high volumes.
One unique feature of the boombox at the time was that it allowed users to record radio playing through the box and saving a copy on a cassette tape for later playback. With more technology advancements, boomboxes begun being incorporated along with CD players, which allowed the users to record music not only on cassette tapes, but also on CDs. The boomboxes were very popular among the young consumers, as they combined the volume of a stereo system and high-fidelity sound in a compact package that could be taken almost anywhere.
In the 1970s and 1980s, the boombox became an icon in the mainstream United States, and was culturally iconic among the urban youth of the country. With the boombox, it was possible for the youth to listen to the music they wanted almost anywhere without the former constraints or parental supervision.
People were also able to share music by recording it on CDs or cassette tapes or offer it to other groups of people to enjoy. The popularity of boomboxes led to the birth of break dancing and contributed to the birth of hip hop music since talented young people had the ability to record their own music, record their voice over music, and even share their songs with other people. The boombox provided a way for street musicians to get their songs to the masses, and this was where vehicle rappers created their genre.
In the following years, we often saw boombox in videos being carried on the shoulder by a hip hop dancer as they showed off a few dance moves. Another way it was used is being placed in the background as a break dancer showed off his/her moves.
Boomboxes are a perfect way to enjoy music wherever and whenever. They let you take the party to the beach, the park, or anywhere else you want. There’s no doubt that boomboxes are taking the market by storm, and are the new trend this summer.
Some people love the memories that boomboxes bring back, others enjoy the modern features, while others look for portability and functionality. Regardless of the reason for buying a boombox, it’s very important that you get nothing but the very best one for you.
With the details we have discussed above, you now have a better understanding of where boomboxes came from, what to look for in one, and some of the best ones you can find on the market today. Buying a boombox shouldn’t be a challenge anymore, even if you are ‘green’ in this sector.
I hope that you have all that it takes to ensure that you get the best boombox. For you to make the right choice, apply the tips above and make a selection among the boomboxes reviewed above. After all, these units have the features that a good boombox should include, and not only that, but most customers rated them as the best devices. So, for the best value for money, make sure that you invest in one of these.
Our guide will help you to easily find the best boombox that fits right into your personal taste and requirements. If you aren’t fond of the products we have chosen, don’t worry, there are a vast majority of products to choose from, and you can simply do some research based on the features you’re looking for. Keep in mind that as technology continues to advance, boomboxes will continue to add more features, and we will continue updating our list to help you make the right choice.Thanks for reading whole boombox reviews.