In a market swimming with 2.1 speakers it's difficult to find a product that stands out from the crowd.
Combining a sub and separate speakers into a portable travel solution isn’t something we’ve seen a lot of, but ThinkOutside's BoomTube H20 certainly falls into this category.
It's a very stylish unit, innovatively designed so that the terminals slot neatly either side of the sub for transportation in the carry case provided.
Simply twist off the terminals and wire them into the subwoofer and you’re ready to go. Reinforcing its capabilities as a portable solution is a built-in rechargeable battery; once charged from the mains you can expect around 5 hours of use - a handy coloured LED warns you when the battery is getting low so you have some idea of when it’ll need a charge.
You'll find controls on the sub for volume and bass boost, along with a line-in and headphone port on the back. It's an excellent start then, and we were really hoping the performance did justice to the effective design and features.
As part of a tongue-in-cheek marketing strategy ThinkOutside provides you with a pair of foam earplugs in the box, humorously entitled "for your neighbours". This is perhaps a tad optimistic coming from such a compact and portable speaker but we were none the less surprised at the excellent clarity and an impressive 40W of power that can certainly do justice to your audio through a range of environments.
The 2.1 arrangement means you’re getting a better audio image than most other travel-oriented speakers, and with this much power under the hood we found them perfectly suitable for a more permanent placement next to a television or alongside your PC.
Considering the name and conscientious ear-plug inclusion we were a little let down by the impact from the sub. Although you can’t expect anything overly dramatic from something this size we were hoping for a little better.
Overall the sound quality is excellent though, easily loud enough if the situation warrants it yet crisp and clean enough for a subtle addition to an A/V setup or for using with an MP3 player.
At £99.99, they're reasonably priced considering the performance and versatility on offer. You'll find better solutions around for specific environments but in terms of something you can either carry around on the move or use as a more permanent audio solution in almost any situation, this is one of the best setups we've seen for a while.
If you’re looking for a portable speaker solution and this sort of versatility appeals, the BoomTube H20 is an extremely impressive offering.
While you’ll find more targeted rivals that perform better in their intended environment, we were pleased by the overall performance and consider the BoomTube highly recommended.