What's cooler than a boom box for loads of street cred? A boom box powered with solar energy, of course. Aron Zingman, a designer from Cambridge, Massachusetts, has created just that – an updated version of the 80s music-playing icon. He named the unit after himself (ZingBox), which should make him quite popular in the outdoor party circuit.

In terms of design, Zingman went for cabinet style construction with a crafted, solid look about it. The ZingBox measures 20 inches (51 cm) wide x 13 in (33 cm) tall x 10.5 in (27 cm) deep. The eye-catching 30 lb (13.6 kg) structure is meant to evoke the style of its predecessors, mixing nostalgia and contemporary sustainability concerns.

The system was designed with powerful audio output in mind – Zingman says it can reach a volume of 106 dB with its 95 dB/W-m woofers, which is higher than standard speakers rated at 88 dB/W-m. Such audio potency doesn't translate into more electricity consumed, since “decibels are a logarithmic not a linear relationship," he says on his Kickstarter project page. He adds the sound put out by the 2 x 15W amplifier is tantamount to the sound produced by a 2 x 60W or even a 200W amplifier linked to a standard set of speakers.

Performance-wise, the system comes with a promise of eight hours of battery life. The 1/8-inch headphone jack allows the system to play audio from a range of sources including MP3 players, iPhone and Android devices, laptop computers, or any device with a headphone connection. There’s also a 12V car-style socket for gadgets that require powering, plus a wall charging converter and cable are included.

The optional Karaoke Kit allows users to show off their performing skills.

A pledge of US$545 will get you a ZingBox by next March, if the Kickstarter project is successful.

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