Bose Sound Dock for iPod

Bose has decided that the iPod is ubiquitous enough to venture into the iPod speaker world, but can the company bring its prowess to the world of iPod speakers? We take a listen and find out.

Compared to other speakers available for the iPod, two things stand out, firstly that they are a lot more expensive than most of its peers and secondly the main and only speaker is big and weighty (6.65in H x 11.91in W x 6.48in D and 2.1 kg). There is a reason of course for both. The first is because Bose is Bose and like Apple, everything it makes seems to be expensive. The second is because the sound the model produces from this large speaker is very loud, very clear and overall very good.

What's the catch I hear you ask? Well in our mind, the design while good just isn't up to what we would expect from Bose. The iPod, which slots into a charging docking station similar to the Altec Lansing iM3 set, isn't very supportive and just wobbles in its dock, additionally the dock moulding can be swapped out to fit 10Gb, 15Gb, 20Gb, 40Gb even the iPod Mini, you won't be able to plug in your 60Gb iPod Photo model because its too fat. Buttons, sockets and other such details are in that minimalist styling - thin on the ground.

The front offers volume up and down while the rear offers nothing more than a docking socket so you can connect it to your Mac or PC. Unlike the Altec Lansing model, the Sound Dock does not feature an additional input socket for a secondary source.

Controlled via a remote, it offers the basic functions like volume up/down, skip track and so forth and because the iPod sits like it does (see images) all information about what is being played is displayed clearly on the iPod's screen.

Bose's sound engineering shines through in spades and unlike the Altec Lansing iM3 there is no issues with getting the levels right on the iPod and the speaker system. This really is a speaker capable of beating most mini-systems.

Verdict

The Bose does what it sets out to do, however at a price. This model retails at £250 and while the sound is as impressive as they get, the iPod fitting, the lack of support for the iPod Photo and the rather bulky remote will put some off.

If you can stretch to the price this is a great speaker system, however do you really want to spend more on the speakers than you have on the actual player?