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Review - Boostaroo Revolution
Wednesday, March 21st, 2007 at 6:00 AM - by
Boostaroo Revolution is a tiny, high definition portable amplifier and splitter for use with your iPod or any other audio device that has a headphone mini jack.
According to its manufacturer:
"The Revolution will give your audio an expansive 400% increase in volume, while at the same time providing high definition sound. Our patented circuit breaks apart compressed audio signals into three separate audio channels. This effect not only produces a highly defined sound, but creates imaged surround sound as well."
I can neither confirm nor deny those claims. What I can confirm is that the Revolution improves the sound of my iPods quite a bit. It makes cheap headphones (like the ones that come with your iPod) sound better, and makes better-quality headphones sound fantastic.
I don't know about you, but there are times -- particularly in noisy places like an airplane or train -- when I find the iPod's amplifier somewhat lacking. And I prefer not to crank the iPod volume to 100% anyway, because when I do, I hear a bit of harshness that borders on distortion. So the Boostaroo Revolution is just what the doctor ordered (pun intended). While I don't know what they mean by "imaged surround sound" -- I never really heard that -- there is no question that the device improves the sound quality of my iPods quite a bit, adding not only volume, but also presence and clarity. Music of all types sounds richer, fuller, crisper, and, of course, louder through the Revolution.
In addition to being a kick-ass amplifier, Revolution supports two sets of headphones at a time. And unlike passive splitters, like you pick up at Radio Shack for a couple of bucks, there's no reduction in volume when two people listen. Revolution sounds just as good with two sets of headphones plugged into it as it does with only one set.
Alas, it's not all a bed of roses. For one thing, even though the Revolution is only the size of a couple of packs of chewing gum, it's awkward to carry around, as you can see in this picture:
And it uses teeny tiny AAAA batteries, which are hard to find, especially at an airport or train terminal.
The Bottom Line
Boosteroo Revolution may not be the most convenient device to dangle off of your iPod, but there's no denying it improves sound quality and level immensely. So, if you're dissatisfied with your iPod's sound quality or volume, and you don't mind a bit of awkwardness, you're going to love Boosteroo Revolution.
Note: If we gave half-microphone ratings, I'd rate this product 3.5 microphones instead of 3. The reason I didn't go the other way and give it a 4 rating is that I rarely feel like carrying yet another little device and cable around with me. So while I like the way Boosteroo Revolution makes my iPod sound, I don't use it very often.
Just The Facts
Pros: Improves sound quality, increases sound level, allows two listeners.
Cons: Awkward to carry around, unusual battery size.
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