I can't say that I was ever attracted to throwing myself down onto a square piece of vinyl in my youth, but I do remember being somewhat envious of the obligatory giant sound system that always went hand in hand with all that energetic popping and breaking business. Music technology has moved on a great deal since then, but the boombox still provides an excellent way to share music stored on a personal media player with friends. The House of Marley recently celebrated a certain Reggae legend's birthday with the release of the Bag of Rhythm portable stereo speaker system. Topped by a solid piece of FSC-certified Birch wood and coming in its own durable cotton canvas bag, the device can output 32 watts of sonic power through two 1-inch tweeters and two 4.5-inch woofers, and features an iPod/iPhone dock that can charge while playing.

Those of us who don't own Apple music players can still feed our tunes into the 7 x 21 x 8.75-inch (177.8 x 533.4 x 222.25 mm) Bag of Rhythm via a 3.5mm auxiliary input (and included cable), but won't benefit from having our media player's battery juiced up while doing so. Users can power the unit itself from the mains (it will weigh in at 10.6 pounds/4.8 kg), a 12V car plug, six D-sized batteries or a soon-to-be-made-available rechargeable battery pack.

Like other audio products in the House of Marley line, the Bag of Rhythm has undergone custom tuning to ensure premium sound quality. The system features a Class D amplifier, benefits from proprietary digital signal processing technology, has a frequency response of 56Hz - 20kHz, and total harmonic distortion of less than one percent.

The Bag of Rhythm is priced at US$349.99, and buyers will also be indirectly contributing to a charity which offers support to worthy causes around the world, as the House of Marley donates five percent of its annual takings to the 1Love organization.

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