has been aggressive with their line of audio products making noticable
improvements over the years. The recent acquisition of Slim Devices
(makers of the Squeezebox) shows their commitment in this market segment.
Slim Devices has been known for their superior audio quality
with products geared for audiophiles and others critical of sound quality.
The Squeezebox Boom continues this legacy, yet looks more
like a fancy clock radio than something that actually sounds good. However,
looks can be deceiving. This audio media player is designed to impress
with the ability to stream audio from thousands of Internet radio stations,
your personal music collection, or online services such as Pandora®,
Rhapsody™, Sirius®, Last.fm, Slacker, MP3tunes,
RadioTime, Radio IO and Live365. The platform supports a wide variety
of non-DRM content including compressed formats (MP3, AAC, Ogg Vorbis,
MP2, MusePack, WMA) and uncompressed formats (AIFF, WAV, PCM). Unfortunately,
the Squeezebox Boom cannot play music directly from an NAS
(Networked Access Server), but instead requires a PC loaded with the SqueezeCenter
The SqueezBox Boom has a bright, high-contrast VFD display
with an ambient light sensor for automatic dimming which makes it less
harsh to see in the dark. Several easy to use buttons occupy the front
panel. The large knob is used to select an option and pressing it confirms
the selection. The Boom has an intuitive user interface and relies
largely on the SqueezeNetwork software running on a PC to configure
and control content. Six preset buttons can be programmed to select your
favorite content. The display brightness automatically adjusts to the
ambient room lighting.
The Squeezebox Boom includes a 30-watt digital amplifier
with a set of ¾-inch soft-dome tweeters and 3-inch long-throw woofers
that sound fantastic. The back of the Squeezebox Boom has
an ethernet port along with a built-in 802.11g wireless interface. We
prefer the convenience of the wireless connection, which allows us to
place the music player virtually anywhere power is available. In addition,
the connection is fast enough for uninterrupted music streaming. The Line
In jack accepts audio from other sources and the headphone jack can
also be used to drive a powered subwoofer. The universal power adapter
can run from 100-240VAC, 50-60Hz making it compatible around the world.
The IR remote included with the Boom has many of the same basic
controls found on the front panel of the unit. The top of the Boom
has a special location for the remote that magnetically holds it in
place, making it less likely to get lost. There are buttons for Home,
Sleep Timer, Power, Add, Play, Navigation,
Volume Up/Down, Rewind, Pause, and Forward.
The Home button takes the user to the home display. The Sleep
button selects a time period between 15 and 90 minutes.
The Squeezebox Boom is a solid product with a compact design
and rich set of features. The convenient Wi-Fi connection makes it easy
to stream program material from a variety of sources using the SqueezeNetwork
software running on our networked PC. The Squeezebox Boom
is also an alarm clock that can be configured to play many different sounds
in addition to music. We configured our unit to play a natural ocean surf
sound that was very soothing in the morning.
The Logitech® Squeezebox Boom ($299.99) is by far the
best music player to have graced my night stand. The bright, high-contrast
VFD display with ambient light sensor for automatic dimming works great.
The unit can stream internet radio stations, subscription based content
as well as music from personal MP3 collections thanks to the built-in
802.11g wireless with dual internal antennas and 10/100Base-T Ethernet
ports. The Squeezebox Boom is not only easy to use, but also
- Kevin Nakano
Update: It has been almost a year since I have been using the Squeezebox Boom and it is still my favorite music player to wake up to with excellent alarm features.