Summer weather means outdoor projects or even moving your sanding or finishing tasks outside the shop. If you want to bring your MP3 player along for the ride, charge your cordless tools and have a few extra outlets where you need them, one of Bosch’s updated Power BoxTM 360 sound systems might be just the portable unit you’re looking for.
You may already be familiar with these aluminum-and-rubber “roll cage” radios: Bosch has been making Power Box since 2004. But, the company is now releasing the next evolutions in the series with more speakers and added features. The new Power Box 360 employees a five-speaker design with an integrated subwoofer, so it can project high quality, enriched sound in all directions. The PB360S model produces twice the sound of the previous version, and the PB360D is capable of five times the sound output. Bosch says the added subwoofer is an “industry first” among jobsite radios.
Both machines have digital signal processing to optimize AM/FM reception, and you can select from four preset equalizer settings or customize your sound quality by programming separate bass and treble controls. If you’d prefer to use your MP3 player, the updated Power Boxes feature a sealed digital media bay for plugging in your player. The bay also contains SD memory card and USB ports so you can use a media card or USB thumb drive device instead, for cataloging your favorite tune libraries. The digital media bay will keep whatever you stow in it free from moisture, dust and debris in the shop or on the jobsite. External auxiliary ports still allow you to plug in a portable CD player or a satellite radio unit. The “D” model also comes with a built-in SIRIUSTM Dock & Play port for connecting to SIRIUS satellite radio devices.
Both Power Box models have a battery bay that charges your 14.4- or 18-volt Bosch tool batteries right on the unit. Or, when an AC power source isn’t available, you can use the tool battery to run the Power Box itself. The USB port will also recharge USB devices. Speaking of power, both versions of PB360 come with a pair of 110-volt outlets to help you run other tools or devices wherever you’re working. On the PB360D, these outlets are GFCI style. A 12-volt DC car charger, which comes with both machines, should add even more versatility.
Illuminated LCD displays make these units easier to use in low-light situations, and PB360D has a fully backlit control panel plus a separate remote for controlling the unit up to 40 ft. away.
The PB360D will have a $249 street price, and the PB360S will sell for $199. Both models are scheduled to be available later this month or shortly thereafter through authorized Bosch dealers nationwide.