I think it’s fair to say there are quite a few iPod speaker docks on the market today, and overall they range massively in terms of value, quality and style. In the past I have found Sony as one of the companies which tend to provide the best of all three.
Admittedly, I haven’t had much chance to test out all of those that Sony provide, but in my experience with a few of them, I have never been left disappointed by the audio quality and the style. As with everything Sony of late, style is imperative, but never do they compromise in quality either. Let’s hope the new Sony RDP-XF100iP iPod Speaker Dock follows suit and becomes exactly what it promises to be, one of the best portable speaker docks around.
There are a few main points made by Sony which determine the quality and all-rounded-ness of the device. Firstly, the sound quality comes from a newly designed digital amplifier which provides a ‘generous’ 20W + 20W output power in a twin port system which aims to provide powerful bass as well as a great range whilst keeping near perfect clarity in the sound. The device comes with five separate sound modes which provide versatility to suit each listeners personal preference. The preset sound styles are Rock, Pop, Jazz, Vocal and Flat.
Secondly, is the design and portability. The unit is fairly lightweight weighing in at just under 2Kg including the power supply unit. It has a retractable dock tray which is fairly common on a lot of portable speaker systems these days, but none the less increases its potential as a real portable device. In addition, it’s extremely slim at around 16mm in depth so it will slide nicely into a bag or suitcase allowing you to travel whilst keeping high quality audio from your music and video stored on your iPod Touch. Simply adding to the portability is the 7 hours listening time provided by the rechargeable battery when not connected to the power supply unit.
Finally, the looks and sleek design of the iPod speaker dock is pivotal to its attraction to potential customers. It’s smooth cover and glossy black frame provide a simple, yet elegant look allowing it to blend seamlessly into many home environments. Whilst writing this I am getting a sense of deja vu, as it seems only yesterday I was writing these same comments about an entire range of Sony home theater products including Bravia HDTVs and Blu-Ray players that featured the Monolithic Design Concept. Clearly, the company is putting a lot of emphasis on their designs and the suitability to home environments.
The Sony RDP-XF100iP iPod Speaker Dock features another couple of interesting additions, most notably the OLED display which allows the user to identify track names and artists etc. Also, a built in FM radio and a wireless remote control. All pretty standard with many premium speaker docks certainly, but definitely a few things which really sets this apart from the cheaper end of the spectrum.
I personally am becoming a big fan of Sony’s latest products. They are stylish as well as extremely functional, and what else could you want from such devices? Their emphasis on design is what really stands them out from their competitors and long may it continue!