Hands On: Soundboks’ Portable Hi-Fi Bluetooth Speaker Packs A Punch

Sep 18, 2019

Category: Tech

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The search for a great portable speaker is neverending, especially when you’re an audiophile. For guys like us, distortion, lackluster depth, or a rogue sibilant note can lead to immediate disdain for a product, whether that be a pair of truly wireless headphones, high-profile speakers, or a professionally-built PA system. Sure, it’s a hard life to lead, but the pursuit of perfection is an arduous process.

Luckily, there are a handful of companies out there who share the same insatiable thirst for premium audibles. After searching throughout the industry for the most transcendental speaker available, a handful of proprietors uncovered the single, inevitable reality: there is no such thing as perfect. Wherever you look, there are soured notes, excessive treble, an unhealthy encumbrance of bass, and questionable encoding practices that leave just as much to be desired. However, for each disheartening qualm, there is an opposing force; and while perfection might not be subjectively attainable, we can come fundamentally close.

In a world where our understanding of sound is so closely correlated with taste and preference, the search for an all-encompassing speaker might seem laughable. How does one define the perfect platform? What do we expect from the quintessential device? And how would one company go about producing such an example? Soundboks — a high-end audio outfit from Copenhagen, Denmark — once pondered these same questions. And now, they’ve introduced the new and improved Soundboks speaker — the audiophile’s latest bastion in the realm of unparalleled acoustics.

Over the past week, we’ve been in possession of Soundboks’ newest speaker: a large, capable, and beautiful beast that brings to light all of the qualities you would expect from a high-end system without all the drawbacks of modern, overly-expensive PAs. First, let’s touch on the handsome architecture of the device, and talk about a few of the uniquely-tailored characteristics that set it apart.

The Build

Materials & Dimensions

At just under 34-pounds, Soundboks’ newest speaker straddles the line between portability and static use. It takes up a generous amount of space, housing its prolific audio equipment in a 25.6 × 17 × 13 -inch Poplar enclosure; but, thanks to its sleek rectangular design, it fits effortlessly in the nooks and crannies of the office, home, or apartment. As with most entertainment systems, aesthetics play a larger role than we give them credit for; but don’t fret, the Soundboks’ stealthy powder-coated aluminum frame, grill, and handles embody a futuristic, albeit minimalist, design principle, giving it an aura of intrinsic luxury. On each corner, silicone balls protect the speaker’s surface from inclement wear and tear, while an IP65-rated electronic coating serves to keep its internals protected from moisture.

The Battery

Power & Longevity

One of the most attractive traits of the Soundboks speaker is its adaptability, and thanks to a bolstered 40-hour battery life at medium volume levels, you’ll be able to rely on its high-fidelity audio wherever you go. This comes courtesy of the device’s 12.8V, 7.8Ah Lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFePO4) cell, which features quality of life implementations like a five-step LED battery-life indicator and heavy-duty DC-connector for fast-charge operations. When you run out of juice on the battery pack, you’re able to swap it out for another, providing an endless stream of high-end audio throughout the day. If you’re a connoisseur of higher decibels, you’ll only be able to operate the speaker for five hours at max volume, but never fear; a quick, 3.5-hour recharge means that you’ll be ready to go in no time.

The Tech

Sound & Internals

Now, let’s talk about the most enticing aspects of the Soundboks. Inside of the device’s tasteful Poplar cabinet, you’ll find three 72W RMS Class D amplifiers, Advanced Bass DSP, and a Merus Audio eximo amp that provides the unit’s dual 10-inch 96dB woofers and one-inch 104dB compression driver tweeter with an esteemed foundational architecture. The result: distortion-proof clarity at ranges from 40Hz – 20kHz, or up to 126dB. If crystal-clear transparency isn’t your cup of tea, rest assured knowing that the Soundboks also supports custom-made sound profiles, allowing you to craft bespoke values for accurate manipulation of treble, bass, and mid-tones. With the ability to wirelessly pair via SKAA with up to four other cabinets, the company’s newest speaker allows listeners to create their very own professional soundstage — making it perfect for studios, theatres, and open areas where great-sounding acoustics are plentiful. On the exterior, you’ll even find two XLR, ¼-inch inputs, a 3.5mm Stereo Input, and a 3.5mm Stereo Output catered toward microphones and instruments.

The Verdict

A Special Soundscape

Soundboks’ most recent release is an awe-inspiring piece of hardware, gifting avid audio aficionados with access to a high-end peripheral that breaks free of the boundaries afforded by conventional audio systems. Not only does it provide a solution to the longstanding quandary of portable, battery-powered audio devices, it also boasts the title of the world’s first Bluetooth-connected professional speaker system, spurning an entirely new genre in the process. Over the past week, we’ve used the Soundboks speaker throughout the workday, at our homes, and even outdoors; needless to say, its exceptional clarity, immense decibel range, and durable, lightweight orientation has won us over. We’ll take five.

If you’re interested in picking up one of the best-sounding and best-looking high-fidelity sound systems on the market, head to Soundboks’ website, where their newest speaker is available for just $999.

Purchase: $999

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