Photo by Amelia Holowaty Krales / The Verge

The button is simple, almost plain. A flat black circle, simple dye-sublimated letters, and a small LED pinprick to let you know that it’s on. “EXTRA BASS,” it declares in tall, bold capitals. For indeed, the EXTRA BASS button only does one blindingly obvious thing: it adds extra bass.

The speaker in question here is a Sony XB90 Extra Bass High Power Audio System. It is a product without pretension, without guile or duplicity. It has Extra Bass in the name, and the eponymous button is a microcosm of the device, a thing that encapsulates the form and function in a neat, tidy shorthand.

This is not a speaker for listening to soft sonatas of Mozart or enjoying the sonic subtleties of a rare acoustic studio recording. It is a…

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