When the iPod first came out, it was defined by its mobility. The ads featured jumping and dancing, no more lock-down for music
enjoyment. Whatever it was, it worked. Even though portability had been the last wish of the CD, the diskman never really got over the fumbly disk changing aspect. So the iPod came in strong with several smaller mp3 player cousins. Here we are now, a few years into jumping and dancing whilst enjoying mp3s, and truth be told, we want to kick up our feet once in a while. The market is changing, and an onslaught of different amplification methods for your iPod is at the door.
Give your earlobes a break from white-plastic headphones:
At $299, the new Apple Hi-Fi System appeals to those who want to “fill [their homes] with sound, not stereo components,” according to the Apple website. It has a D battery option for those still anxious to bring their libraries to group settings out of doors, weighing in at about 17 pounds (w/ batteries). From my experience, Apple knows how to make an mp3 sound good. This option will suit most consumers’ needs, but might lack the specs a true audiophile could celebrate.
A more compact option is the Altec Lansing In-Motion System, which asks $79.99. The speakers compare to any small portable speakers, meaning they’ll get the job done. An impressive element is the cross-company compatibility of all iPod types and sizes, including a dock that charges your device while you listen.
I luckily moved into a sublet recently that has offered me a bonus Bose SoundDock for my stay. Bose has a history of simply nailing every aspect of sound quality in tightly designed, compact systems. The SoundDock is no exception, and in the $300 range, there’s no match. Although it requires AC power, limiting its opportunities for outdoor travel, this system is designed for home or office use. I can easily transfer the speaker/dock from room to room, and these speakers (like all Bose) can really crank. Compatible and adaptable for nearly every iPod available (adaptor is required for iPod photo, etc), the Bose SoundDock is the tops.