Cool gifts for geeks, 2011: Portable entertainment

Presenting the gems in portable entertainment.

Page 11 of 11

Foxl personal audiophile loudspeaker, by Soundmatters

This portable speaker system lets users stream their music via a Bluetooth-enabled device (smartphone, iPod Touch, etc.) to produce great music or to provide great sound for watching movies or playing games. The unit is very solid, but small enough to pack into a travel bag.

On the technology side, the speakers utilize the company's patented "Twoofer" system, which are tweeters that also woof, providing wide response through two dual voice coil 25mm magnetic drives. The company says this is tuned to 100Hz, producing eight full octaves of music. The BasBattery is a rechargeable lithium-ion battery and an acoustic bass radio, which extends bass by an entire octave, the company adds.

In testing the system produced some great sound, although I needed to adjust the speaker's volume in the back of the unit, and not just adjust it on the iPhone I was streaming from. Bluetooth pairing was very easy, it automatically tries to pair when you turn on the device. An on/off switch on the back is a nice feature that can save battery life, but you have to remember to turn it off - there's no automatic shutdown if you stop playing the unit. Fortunately, there's a power adapter included should you run out of battery life.

I still preferred the design and sound from the Jawbone Jambox unit, but this is a very, very, very close second for my portable speaker needs. For the audiophile on your gift list, check this out!

Cool Yule rating: 4 stars
Price: $199
Reviewed by Keith Shaw

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This story, "Cool gifts for geeks, 2011: Portable entertainment" was originally published by Network World.

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