Boombox or portable party speakers are a fun way to perk up the weekend with friends and family. These portable speakers can be a nice add on at family get-togethers and house parties. There are few good ones out there, and we tested the newly launched Blaupunkt BB50 to see how effective it is in a home, and somewhat outdoor, environment.
The iconic German brand is known for its well-built audio products, but boomboxes are not its mainstay, though this is the second generation in its boombox series. So, we were unsure about how this portable device was going to turn out. The second generation Atomik series - BB25 and BB50 - are different from the first in terms of the audio output, design and the complete absence of cables.
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The BB50 we received produced a clear sound with a deep bass while retaining the audio fidelity by keeping distortions down. The 50-watt speaker unit weighed 2.5 kgs, half kilo less than the BB20, and it was easy to carry around with the built-in handle. Once turned on, the speaker lights up with mood-setting RGB colours encircling the two passive radiators in front and two four-inch speakers on the sides. The colour tones and how they ebb and flow can be adjusted. If someone prefers to keep the lights out, there is an option to turn them off.
The fun part of this unit is in the karaoke feature. Also, this is a step up from the BB20, which came with a cable attached microphone. With the BB50, the mic connects to the speaker using Ultra-high Frequency (UHF). The voice output is quite clear in a large room that does not have any hindrance. The mic has nice metallic finish, and is powered by two AA-size batteries. The EQ feature in the speaker lets users change audio output to make it sound as if the music is played outdoors. This setting works well when the unit is kept in an open place (for example: on the terrace).
The BB50 comes with a remote control that gives about half a dozen party options. These include clapping and wow sounds. And they opted even when a song is played. On the battery, this boombox claims to have 12 hour charge. But, we found it to be draining charge in about six hours. During our review, we tested the device keeping the RGB mood-setting lights on, and playing music at around 60-70% volume level. Blaupunkt usually recommends using the device at 50% volume to check its battery capacity.
Charging the unit is the tough part. The rubber part covering the I/O port attached to the rear side is hard to remove. Though Blaupunkt does not say anything about this device’s water resistance level, such a hard cover felt unnecessary for the unit. We had to search for a small flat object that can help us remove the rubber cover. Also, there was no way to know how long the device takes to charge as the device goes dormant when put on charge.
The BB50 Boombox is available on popular ecommerce sites at ₹5,999.
Blaupunkt’s latest boombox iteration builds on its strengths and provides a quality audio output with a host of Karaoke features that can make it a nice-to-have device during family get-togethers and friends reunions. It is easy to carry around and use. The one thing that this speaker misses is a good water and dust-proof feature. That add on could have made it get a spot near the swimming pool.