Bridging Gaps Between the Old and New

Photo by Yarcenia Garcia

Nestled inside of an old manufacturing building in the heart of Sacramento’s Southside Park neighborhood houses a company that is responsible for pushing the boundaries of impressive sound out into the world — and it practically flies under the radar to most people in the city.

BoomCase, described as handcrafted cases that blend classic boombox looks with the latest in speaker technology, have been featured in magazines like Rolling Stone and popped up in advertisements for Puma and Sprite. Even celebrities like Coldplay’s Chris Martin, NBA star Carmelo Anthony and most recently legendary rapper Common have BoomCases (Check out Common using it during the event we produced called The Resistance below).

“I built my own version just for fun. I didn’t really build it as a business at the beginning,” co-founder Dominic Odbert explained.

With a background in creating sound systems and love for the nostalgia of boomboxes, he toyed with a vintage suitcase to create his first prototype. He sold a few to friends, break dancers, and just quietly made his own for personal enjoyment.

Eventually, Odbert took his creation and displayed a BoomCase on his website. Within a few months serious tech blogs such as Chip Chick and Engadget started posting about his product.

“It was pretty crazy,” Odbert recalled, “I had just moved from San Francisco and was actually in St.Louis getting my Masters in Fine Arts–and it just happened. While I was in class someone sent me the link to a BoomCase article and I just didn’t expect it to be so popular.”

He had no idea it was something he could really profit from and he discussed with us how his product isn’t technically a new concept. Odbert was really inspired by people crafting radios into their own suitcases in the 1950s and 60s, and those who mixed car stereos with batteries in the 80s.

Photo by Yarcenia Garcia
“It’s not a new idea, I’m just making the idea more accessible to a younger audience, ” Odbert explained.

Since 2009 co-founders, Dominic and his brother JP Odbert have been providing their custom and original BoomCases to the public. Their intent was to create a sound system with unique appearance, rechargeable batteries, and brilliant sound quality.

At first, the Odberts and their team usually found themselves in antique stores searching for vintage and unusual items to put speakers in. From aged wooden barrels and lunchboxes, to even a dated Darth Vader-shaped Star Wars figurine holder. The creatives were determined to put sound equipment in anything and everything.

“I feel like at first we were trying to do everything we could possibly do– the craziest speakers and the most wild designs we could think of. We still do, but nowadays we kind of figured out what works best in certain places. What people are buying more of,” Dominic explained.

The usual process of creating a BoomCase’s style and design largely involves determining the size of whatever box used. From there, crafters can then determine the cut, the speaker size and how much power to put within.

Photo by Yarcenia Garcia

With the new Wooden BoomCases the Odberts based the look on a classic surveyors box. But rather than sifting through antique stores for vintage cases, BoomCase is making these editions from scratch.

The novelty of BoomCase is that every one is especially unique and there is usually only one or two of each version. With BoomCase’s new Wooden edition, the brand is intent on the product being more available to the public.

With the help of Tim White hand sculpting the Odbert’s designs, Dominic and his team then take the blank boxes and cut them for the insertion of amps and batteries.

Photo by Yarcenia Garcia

These new editions will have two sizes of 12” x 8” x 7” and 14" x 10" x 8” and both are offered in Alder or Zebra wood. The smaller version will have a 50-Watt amplifier with 3.5” woofers, while the larger will have a 100-Watt amp with 5.25" speakers. Both include Bluetooth, two tweeters and rechargeable batteries with 18+ hours of battery life.

Photo by Yarcenia Garcia

With stylish design and impressive technology the new cases will also have room for a few items like phones, keys and wallets to fit inside by lifting the leather belt or leather handle strapped to the top. Custom engraving of designs or names is another option for consumers.

Photo by Yarcenia Garcia

With such a distinct look and individual flair, it’s no wonder Dominic thought Sacramento was the place to build his sound enhancing creations.

He further expressed, “I think Sacramento has good opportunities in that it has cheap rent and resources for most businesses”.

BoomCase is bridging the gaps between old and new generations, further progressing the state of Sacramento innovations and individual style.

Photo by Yarcenia Garcia
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