Product News: Portable speakers

11 Apr 2006

We preview the latest releases in portable speakers for any audio device, from dockable iPods, portable CD player or even a mobile phone

Klipsch iFi (pictured)
What is it? Speaker system for iPod
Price: €379.99 approx

Who says digital music has to be for your ears only? American speaker manufacturer Klipsch claims its iFi speaker system for iPods offers 200 watts of sound to appease audiophiles.

Operated by a long-range remote control, the iFi works with most dockable iPods, including the iPod mini and iPod photo. First and second-generation iPods, shuffles and the new Nano can connect via the audio port on the rear of the dock or subwoofer. The set includes two self-standing or wall-mountable RSX-3 satellite speakers that are magnetically shielded and which use a 3.5-inch aluminium woofer and a 0.75-inch titanium dome compression driver.

Also included is an 8-inch subwoofer with a built-in Class D amplifier that distributes 200 watts of peak system power. Klipsch says it uses different sound technology than other iPod speaker systems for a more controlled dispersion of sound quality commonly found in larger subwoofer boxes.

Klipsch iGroove
What is it? All-in-one iPod speaker
Price: €249.99

Klipsch’s iGroove is an all-in-one speaker system that works with any iPod. A sliding back rest can be adjusted to support any of the Apple music players securely; the iGroove then charges the player while it is docked.

The set even comes with a J-Cup adaptor so that any audio device with a standard headphone jack – be it an MP3 device, portable CD player or even a mobile phone – can play through the speakers. By using a clever air compression method around the horn of the speakers, the iGroove gets a loud sound with minimal distortion. The iGroove can also reproduce deep bass frequencies thanks to a low-turbulence, tuned port located on the rear of the cabinet.

Apple iPod Hi-Fi
What is it? Integrated speakers for Apple music player
Price: €379

Having seen many third-party manufacturers climb aboard the iPod bandwagon with a variety of accessories, Apple has joined the game with its iPod Hi-Fi. The system is housed in a 17×6.6×6.9in white and black box that’s intended to reproduce the sound of a much larger speaker stack. A remote unit, supplied with the set, controls music playback from anywhere in the room.
When connected to the mains, the iPod is charged through the Hi-Fi dock while the music is playing. Alternatively, it can be run on battery power and for added mobility the unit also has built-in handles.

By Gordon Smith