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Big Blue Live - Bluetooth Wireless Speakers

You may know Brookstone from its amazing variety of electronic gadgets that you never knew you needed, or that you suddenly found out that you really did need at the airport.

But Brookstone has been doing some interesting new product development as well, as demonstrated by its Big Blue Audio brand -- with a pair of interesting Bluetooth wireless speakers to play music from your phone or tablet or computer.

The flagship Big Blue Studio is the table-top model (~ 9 1/2 x 5 1/2 x 5 inches and 6 1/2 lbs.), with two full-range speaker drivers (for stereo highs and lows) plus a subwoofer and passive radiator for bass.

It pumps out 30W, 7.5 per channel plus the 15W subwoofer, and is priced at $149.

The smaller Big Blue Live is mini enough to pack for trips (~ 5 x 2 1/2 x 2 1/3 in. and 1.4 lbs.), but large enough to pack stereo speakers for a strong sound, plus a down-firing passive radiator for bass, with a total of 4 W.

It's cordless, adding a rechargable battery for up to six hours of use on the go, plus a microphone so you can use it as a speakerphone.

I particularly appreciate the clear controls, with six distinct buttons on the top: power, volume up/down, forward/back, and phone/play control. Nicely, the forward/back buttons can be used not only to skip to the previous/next track, but also to scan within the track.

The Big Blue Live is great for desktop use, providing strong and clear sound. It's priced at $99.

See my update on gadgets -- Portable Accessories - Mid 2012 -- for more on portable devices and accessories.

Find the Big Blue Live on Amazon.com

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