Somebody really had their head on straight when they designed the Bosch Power Box PB360C jobsite radio. This upgrade to the original Bosch PB10-CD PowerBox has tons of features and speakers that seem to fire from every direction at once. It takes into account the fact that not everyone is going to be working directly in front of the radio. We set out to see whether or not it could truly fill a jobsite with good quality sound.
- Great coverage
- Lots of features
- Built-in battery charger
- 4 GFCI 120V outlets
- Bluetooth audio + App-enabled
- USB charging
- Accommodates larger Bosch batteries
Editor’s Note: Check out our best jobsite radio article for our top picks.
Bosch PB360C Power Box Jobsite Radio Features
Instead of the traditional front-facing stereo speakers, the PB360C features an array of four 1-3/4″ drivers that fire up and outward in all directions at once. A 4-1/2″ flush-mounted woofer fires downward to provide additional bass. Put this in the middle of your job site and everyone is going to hear your tunes.
Measured from any angle, the PB360C Power Box puts out a full 94 dB SPL of output. It’s not the loudest radio we tested from the front, but it certainly puts out more sound if you factor in how it fares when listened to from the sides or behind. I suppose this is the first truly “social” radio that cares about everyone in the room, regardless of where they’re working. Now you just all have to agree on the music!
All of the buttons are rubberized and easy to use with gloves on. Plus, they’re backlit, so you can see what you’re doing when the lighting isn’t so hot. The Tune and Volume knobs are simple to spin, but I wish they reacted with a bit more sensitivity. They seem to take forever when you want to dial forward from one extreme to another—fast or slow, the increments move at the same pace.
You’ll want to put your favorite stations into one of the 10 AM or 20 FM memory slots to avoid having to slow tune or seek from one extreme of the dial to the other. Also, unlike the fancier Makita LXRM03, the Bosch PB360C acts like most other job site radios and doesn’t “sense” inputs. You’ll need to cycle through AM, FM, Aux 1, Aux 2, USB, SD and Sirius to go between active sources—which can be a pain when going from FM to AM, for example.
Inputs, Outputs, and Power
There is so much going on with the Bosch PowerBox that each side almost needs its own description in order to take it all in. The left side features the Aux 1 input, line output, 12V DC (1A) port as well as a hinged compartment. Inside that is a 250V/1A fuse (for the 12V outlet), SD card slot, USB port, and Aux 2 inputs. You also get some hook and loop to strap your mp3 player to the door to keep it out of the elements.
That USB charger tops off your smaller portable devices when you connect the radio to 120V power. If you happen to have a favorite playlist, you could dump it to a 4GB drive and insert it into the USB slot for a week’s worth of music.
On the back, you have connections for the FM antenna (included) and Sirius antenna (optional). Open up the compartment and you’ll find the integrated 18V lithium-ion battery charger (which is also where you power the radio via Bosch 14.4V or 18V batteries).
Four GFCI Outlets
On the right side, you’ll find the four covered 10A GFCI outlets that let the radio double as a power distribution center for all but the most current-hungry power tools. I liked that Bosch thought to provide covers for the outlets. While they’re not waterproof, they will serve to keep out dust and dirt when not in use. This is a job site radio, after all, and it’s remarkable how many times details like that go unnoticed. The top of the Bosch Power Box has a handy carry handle that also stores the included key fob-style remote control. The remote gives you access to Volume, Skip, Source, Power, and Mute controls, and it will easily clip to your keychain or a belt loop.
Bosch PB360C Listening Tests
We really liked the sound of the Bosch radio. It plays loud and clean, with more real bass than most other systems out there. The multi-directional speakers are a great concept, and the entire design of the radio makes it incredibly durable because it does truly isolate the central radio from the surrounding roll cage.
The only downside of the Bosch PB360C Power Box jobsite radio is that it weighs over 25 pounds with a battery inserted. That’s nearly 8 pounds heavier than the next-heaviest model reviewed, the Milwaukee 2790-20.
If you can afford it, the PB360D is a feature-rich model that will take a beating and provide music to an entire job site. At around $199, this might be your best option for a loud, full-featured jobsite radio.