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Jawbone MINI JAMBOX Bluetooth Speakers

Bluetooth wireless speakers are a great way to share your music by enhancing the sound beyond your smartphone or tablet's internal speakers.

However, there's an obvious trade-off between shrinking speakers for better portability versus loudness and audio quality. But the new Jawbone MINI JAMBOX breaks these constraints with impressive sound in a pocketable size.

The Jawbone Jambox family starts with the original Jawbone JAMBOX is around 6 x 2.3 x 2.3 inches and 12.8 ounces, and is still available for around $149.

And there's the self-explanatory BIG JAMBOX for larger sound (10 x 3.1 x 3.6 inches and 2.7 pounds), for $299.

And now there's the MINI JAMBOX, which is around half as thick and 70% the weight of the original (6.06 x 0.96 x 2.28 inches and 9 ounces) -- although you do pay more for the miniaturization at around $199.

But you don't sacrifice on performance -- the sound is amazingly clear, with great separation between voice and instruments from the dual front-facing stereo acoustic drivers and passive bass radiator. Plus the battery provides 10 hours of continuous playback, and up to 75 hours of standby.

The MINI supports the newer Bluetooth 4.0, so the wireless connection is especially strong and consistent, especially with newer devices. It can pair with up to eight devices, and connect with two devices simultaneously, which means it's easy to share among multiple people.

Plus it's a wireless speaker for phone calls, with a 360-degree omnidirectional mic with echo cancellation.

While cutting half the width does make the MINI more portable (albeit for larger pockets), the rugged design does mean that it's not featherweight -- It's constructed from a single piece of extruded aluminum for the face and body.

This construction also permits Jawbone to play with different looks for the exteriors to go with different colors, so the MINI is available with nine designs -- red, silver, yellow, orange, and green dot, plus graphite facet, blue diamond, aqua scales, and purple snowflake.

Jawbone also offers a free app for iOS and Android, including options to customize the controls and enable its LiveAudio 3-D sound enhancement.

The Jawbone MINI JAMBOX is an impressive product, with great sound in a nicely portable design. It works well from the office to the living room to the patio.

See my Holiday Gadgets & Portable Accessories 2013 coverage for more on portable audio and other fun devices.

Find the Jawbone MINI JAMBOX on Amazon.com

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This entry posted on November 17, 2013.

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