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Bose Soundock Portable Reviewed

Mar 21, 2008
Most people agree that when it comes to your iPod the Bose sound dock is the best set of speakers you can find. The only downside of the first iPod soundock is that it has an enormous power supply and A/C cord that limits its use as portable speakers. The new sound dock portable from Bose solves this problem. Its portable speaker system has all of the power and sound quality you'd expect from Bose and it's portable. This great portable sound and the Bose name comes at a high price...if you pay retail for the speakers you'll have to fork over $399.

You have a choice of two colors with the sound dock portable: black and glossy white. The portable unit is small enough to travel with easily and measures 12 by 6 by 5 inches. It weighs just over five pounds and looks very similar to its cousin the original sound dock except for its swiveling iPod dock that protects the dock when traveling with the unit.

The Bose sound dock portable shares a simplistic design with the original model and has no physical controls except for the volume controls. The included remote has eight buttons used to operate playback, volume controls, your play lists, and the unit's power. The remote is small and simplistic; however, its rubberized buttons have a slight lip making them easy to operate by touch. This infrared remote allows you to control your iPod from nearly angle in the room.

There are two connectors on the back of the unit; one analog input and a plug for the power charger. There are no USB ports or video outputs. The speakers are powered by a lithium ion battery pack that holds a charge for up to eight hours of normal usage. At its loudest volume settings the soundock operates for about three hours. The battery holds its charge for a very long time for considering the speakers power and the amount of bass it produces.

The only thing I don't like about the sound dock's design are the built-in volume controls. They are clumsy and not very sensitive to the touch. When your iPod is plugged into the dock the batteries are charged at the expense of play time if your charger is not plugged in. The carrying handle also serves as the speaker's Bass port which Bose cleverly calls the wave guide exit.

There is an LED light behind the speaker grill that flashes with the remote control is used or the lithium-ion battery needs to be charged. If you forget to plug the sound dock into its charger and don't use it for fourteen days the only way to turn it on is by charging the batteries. Bose did not include any dock inserts for the various iPod models so if you lost yours you can get replacements online or from the Apple store. The speaker's power cord has a universal cable winder built in that makes it easy for travel. The plug is a tad large though. If you pay retail you'll shell out $399 for the Bose soundock portable; however price shopping will get you a better deal with free shipping. Bose offers a carrying case; however, if you want one you'll have to pay $59 more.
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