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updated 4/20/2012 9:19:23 AM ET 2012-04-20T13:19:23

There are lots of options for boosting the sound on your music player or smartphone, but Braven's eponymous line of wireless speakers amp up your devices in more ways than one.

First, there's charging. The Braven speaker holds a battery that juices up your player even as it amplifies the sound. The power connection is via a USB port, while the sound is transmitted over Bluetooth or by plugging in via the player's headphone jack.

The built-in battery adds hours to the playing time, so when you're on the beach or at a barbecue, there's not the panicked feeling of needing an outlet. The company says it can charge an iPhone one and a half times, and the speakers can operate for 12 to 20 hours (depending on model).

If you want to further boost your sound presence, you can also daisy-chain multiple speakers using a cable with 3.5 mm jacks (the same size that most headphones use and available for a few bucks at places like Amazon or Best Buy). The Braven also has a speakerphone function.

Braven sells three models — the 600, 625S and 650 — that differ in features such as color, audio quality and ruggedness (the 625S even has a built-in flashlight). Prices range from $150 to $180.

Each Monday, Wednesday and Friday on TechNewsDaily, That's Useful! finds practical new gadgets, computing hardware, apps and appliances that make sense and simply make life better.

© 2012 TechNewsDaily

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