The proliferation of quality portable audio products is gratifying. There are many items at the low end of the market that don’t do much other than making the execrable sound from a mobile phone a bit louder.
And then there are designs that are thoughtful and begin to mimic the type of audio quality befitting the category of high fidelity. It is endemic that digitally sourced music [streaming, MP3/iTunes] carries less sonic information than CDs or vinyl, so comparisons aren’t fair. Given that all indicators point to a streaming world, it is products like the soundbook X3 that discerning folks should be considering.
Featuring up to 10 hours of power, the cool trapezoidal design folds easily into the size and heft of a nice hardback book.
The impressive 25 watts of power delivers rich and crisp sound. I enjoyed the X3 with everything from Led Zeppelin to Mozart sonatas, and I suffered no ear fatigue so prevalent in other outboard units. The latest Bluetooth functionality (v4.0) affords smooth linking. The FM radio and built-in microphone allow for versatility and phone call functionality.
I prefer the silver/blue combination, but a black/orange combination is also available. For $300 this portable unit will bring you solid audio quality in whatever room you are in.