Years ago if you wanted affordable audio, one of the first brands you thought of was Aiwa. For decades Aiwa produced good sounding products that struck a balance between price, performance and quality, until 2002. That’s the year Aiwa was acquired by electronics giant Sony and gradually phased out. By 2006, Aiwa was a lifeless shell of its former self.

Aiwa EXOS-9

 

Fast forward to 2015 and the now Chicago based Aiwa, has someone new at the helm, Joe Born. Born’s goal for Aiwa is to once again produce products that outperform their price tag. Born said “The idea is to take very talented acoustic engineers and give them more hardware to work with”. One of the first products being launched after Aiwa’s resurrection, is the EXOS-9 bluetooth speaker.

 

Speakers have become increasingly smaller the past few years. However, this usually comes at the expense of sound quality. With the EXOS-9 Aiwa wants to buck that trend. The speaker itself measures 20″  (H) x 7.5″ (W) x 12″ (D) and weighs about 13lbs. So unless you have an extra, extra, large back pack you probably won’t be carrying this thing around too much. In fact, at first glance the EXOS-9 is reminiscent of an old-school boom box.

 

The extra bulk of the EXOS-9 is put to good use. Under the hood you’ll find a 6.5″ woofer which is capable of hitting well below the 60Hz mark. The woofer is flanked by two 3″ mid-range drivers and two 1” tweeters. To manage the sound output, this modern-day boom box also incorporates an adjustable equalizer.

 

The included 18,500 mAh battery is said to provide about 10 hours of battery life. The EXOS-9 includes built-in bluetooth with Near Field Communication (NFC). And, for good measure, the EXOS also incorporates a 3.5mm input for wired connections.

 

On paper the the EXOS-9 definitely conjures up memories of old-school boom boxes while also including some modern touches. We’re eager to hear exactly what Aiwa’s engineers have concocted. The EXOS-9 is expected to go on sale the middle of 2015, but if you want to be one of the first to test out Aiwa’s new audio system it’s available for pre-order now.

Aiwa Exos-9 Portable Bluetooth Speaker

Price: $299.99

4.8 out of 5 stars (704 customer reviews)

4 used & new available from $204.50

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