I think I’ve said before, in an attempt to be fiscally responsible (cheap), I try to do most home repairs and renovations myself. I often enlist the help of my children and employ them as my gofer’s. If you ask my children what the most important part of any job is, they will tell you it’s the music you listen to. I’ve previously written I need a Bluetooth speaker that can stand up to the messy environment associated with home repairs. I was recently given the chance to review the portable, water resistant Boombotix Boombot Rex Bluetooth speaker. Let’s find out if it will be a mainstay in my gadget arsenal.
In The Box
- Boombot Rex Bluetooth speaker
- USB charging cable
- 3.5 mm audio cable
- Warranty/Quick start card
- Skull sticker
- Bluetooth 2.1
- Volume – 94dB@2ft (wired)/90dB@2ft (wireless)
- Dimensions – 85mm(w) x 80mm(h) x 54mm(d)
- Weight – 180 grams
- IPX5 rating
The Rex is available in over 10 colors or designs; I was sent the gunmetal gray to review. The body of the Rex is rubbery and feels like it would survive most falls or bumps.
Hidden in the speaker grill is a small LED indicator. It flashes green when charging, remains green when charged, flashes blue when pairing, and remains blue when paired.
The top of the Rex has four function buttons. You have the power button, a multi-function button, and two volume buttons.
The right side of the Rex contains the micro-USB charging port, concealed behind a rubber protective cover.
The left side of the Rex contains two 3.5 mm audio ports – one input and one output – that are concealed by a protective, rubber cover. Neither the Boombotix website nor its manual go into much detail, but I get the impression the output can be used to connect multiple speakers for better sound.
The back of the Rex has a clip that can be used to attach the speaker to a shelf when working or to your clothes when on the go.
I was pleased with the design of the Rex. It’s neither ugly nor attractive, but it looks and feels sturdy. The clip on the back is a great addition, one I haven’t seen on any other Bluetooth speaker.
Setting up the Rex was very easy. As soon as you power it up, it enters into pairing mode. From there, you enter your device’s Bluetooth menu and select the speaker. There were no codes to enter during the pairing process.
I tried pairing the Rex to multiple devices, but wasn’t successful. Despite the fact the Rex can only be paired to one device at a time, it wasn’t too hard to jump back and forth between two devices. Since there is no code required to pair, you only have to re-select the Rex from the Bluetooth menu to jump back and forth. It’s not the best method, but it would be much worse if the Rex required a code to pair.
Once paired, you can use the Rex to stream audio or to make calls. The multi-function button controls almost everything. You press it once to play and pause music, twice to skip to the next track. If you have an incoming call, you press the button to answer it; pressing the button again ends the call. The volume buttons work exactly as one would expect. You can slowly adjust the volume by pressing them repeatedly or quickly change the volume by holding the button down.
The Rex has a IPX5 rating which means “water projected by a nozzle against enclosure from any direction shall have no harmful effects.” From what I’ve read before, this basically means the Rex should be fine in rain, in the shower, and by the pool; although, according the the Boombotix website it means it’s only rated for “light rain/snow”.
The “X” in the IPX5 rating is where the number that provides the device’s dust protection normally is. Officially, the Rex doesn’t have a dust protection rating; however, from what I’ve read, if a device has a moderate level of water protection, it usually has some level of dust protection as well. With that being said, use the Rex in a dusty environment at your own risk; there may be a reason Boombotix chose not to give it a dust rating.
One of the most useful features of the Rex is its clip. I love being able to clip it to my clothes and have music go with me wherever I am. While testing the Rex, I was packing for a getaway at the beach. It was great being able to go from one room to another and always have something to listen to. Additionally, if someone called me, I could carry on a conversation while continuing to pack. The only negative with the clip is it is really tight. I found it difficult to press using one hand, but overall it’s a great addition.
I also attempted to test the battery life on the Rex. I fully charged it and began streaming audio. As I write this, the Rex has been streaming audio for approximately twelve and a half hours. Battery life generally depends on how loud you stream your audio and I wasn’t streaming audio particularity loud. Boombotix claims the Rex will stream for 6 hours; that’s probably based on a higher volume than I was streaming.
I was impressed with the sound quality on the Rex. Streaming audio was extremely clear. There was no distortion or static at all. I raised the volume all the way to max and still did not experience any issues with the sound.
I also tested the Rex while holding it under my running shower. While under the shower the sound quality took a hit; it was more muted than before, but nothing I wouldn’t expect from having water beating down on it. As the Rex dried out, the sound quality returned to normal.
Next, I placed the Rex on my shower floor and let the water run for a minute. Again, the sound quality suffered, but returned to normal as the Rex began to dry out. Overall, the water didn’t have any long-term adverse effects on the Rex.
When making calls, I also found the sound quality to be excellent. I could hear the person I was speaking with perfectly and I did not receive any complaints from them about sound quality from my end.
Finally, Boombotix doesn’t provide a range for the Rex, but I was able to go from one side of my house to the other without losing the signal. The Rex received the Bluetooth signal through multiple walls and appliances without issue.
I was impressed with the Rex. It has a sturdy design and can survive the elements, while packing great sound in a small body. It’s exactly what I need when doing work around the house.
Being the Rex is so tiny, I wouldn’t expect it to be useful if you are having a large party or BBQ; however, if you are hosting a small group of friends or just need some music in the background, the Rex is an excellent choice.
Source: The sample for this review was provided by Boombotix. Please visit their site for more information.