Apple iPod Hi-Fi Speaker System iPod

Apple iPod Hi-Fi Speaker System iPod 


Fill your home with sound, not stereo components. Keep your music collection at your fingertips, not in countless CD cases. Change the way you experience digital music. iPod Hi-Fi delivers crystal-clear, audiophile-quality sound in a clean, compact design. Hear, hear. Just slide your iPod into the built-in Universal Dock to turn on and tune in to digital music as you’ve never heard it before. From pumping bass to bright treble, iPod Hi-Fi delivers natural, room-filling sound. Close your eyes and you’d think you were listening to a huge stack of speakers.


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[Jul 18, 2006]
Audio Enthusiast


Excellent sound quality.
Well built.



This review will focus on the "home stereo replacement" claims Apple makes about this product, and not the integration with the iPod.

When I first saw pictures of this product I thought it was a bit ugly and a complete rip off; $350 for a boombox, ridiculous!

Now a few months later my brother bought one, so I have had the possibility to try it out, and this is what I experienced:

As always with Apple products packaging and build quality is top notch. The speaker is a bit heavy (6.6 kg / 14.5 pounds), and it has a rubber pad at the bottom. This combined with the thick plastic walls, gives it a very sturdy appearance, although I thought it would be larger. A simple remote control is also included in the box.

The first listening test was done at my brothers apartment. I put the Hi-Fi on a desk, behind a notebook, and connected them using an optical 3.5mm-3.5mm cable.
I used iTunes and played a variety of mp3 encoded music. It didn't sound bad, but it wasn't anything special about it. Something that was immediately clear was that this box was very powerful, with the ability to play very loud.

Although I was a bit disappointed with the ordinary sound, I still felt it might perform better in a bigger room. So this weekend I borrowed the speaker for testing in my larger apartment. I put the Hi-Fi on the center speaker of my 5.1 HT system, so I could sit on my sofa 2.5m away, with the speaker at ear level.

Now I was totally blown away by the rich, pure sound from this little "boom-box". Powerful tight bass where you can actually hear detail. I can't even hear this from my larger much more expensive 5.1 system. The clarity of the midrange is incredible, especially when listening to acoustic music. The treble is very good as well, but you need to sit in front of the speaker to hear the finest details. Overall the sound is very natural and powerful playing any kind of music from classical, jazz and rock to pop, soul and Hip-Hop. Some old punk-rock tunes didn't work that well because you could hear every little distorted screech all too well. For poorly mastered and mixed music the iTunes EQ can work very well, cleaning the worst mess out.
You can play it very loud without any noticeable distortion, and the sound isn't tiresome at all, just very fresh and enjoyable.

I remember reading a lot of bad reviews when the iPod Hi-Fi was released, and I think it has to do with the reviewers listening environment. It will work on a bookshelf in a small study, but it needs a larger room where it's placed at ear level to really excel.

Is it worth $350? Well, if you appreciate detailed and clear sound but can't afford true audiophile Hi-Fi, or if you are looking for a mini stereo that can double as a ghetto blaster, there's no doubt. But if you need a small speaker in the kitchen, there are cheaper solutions out there.

Similar Products Used:

None, but compared it to the following:

Creative 5.1 PC-speakers.
Pioneer VSX-1015 based HT system.
Kenwood 1990's stereo system.

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