iHome Audio iP1 Review Yorktown Heights NY

What if you could have your MP3s and your high-quality audio too? That's the promise of iHome's iP1, an iPod speaker dock that claims to restore what compression technologies like MP3 take out. The iP1 is visually striking, and its digital enhancement of compressed music is helpful with some genres.

Local Companies

Apple Store Palisades
(845) 353-6756
1591 Palisades Center Drive
West Nyack, NY
Staples
203-323-1441
2299 Summer St.
Stamford, CT
Staples
845-624-3161
230 West Route 59
Nanuet, NY
Staples
914-937-8193
515 Boston Post Road
Portchester, NY
Sony Style
(914)289-2960
125 Westchester Avenue
White Plains, NY
Apple Store Greenwich Avenue
(203) 302-6691
356 Greenwich Ave.
Greenwich, CT
Apple Store The Westchester
(914) 428-1877
125 Westchester Ave.
White Plains, NY
Staples
203-830-6978
67 Newtown Road
Danbury, CT
Staples
845-353-3774
2653 Palisades Ctr. Drive
West Nyack, NY
Staples
914-345-9401
339 Tarrytown Road
Elmsford, NY

by Edward N. Albro , Macworld.com

Over the past few years, most of us have made a musical sacrifice: We’ve switched from listening to CDs to listening to MP3 files, and in the process we’ve lost some of the nuances of the music in order to have easily portable digital tunes. But what if you could have your MP3s and your high-quality audio, too? That’s the promise of iHome’s iP1 , an iPod speaker dock that claims to restore what compression technologies like MP3 take out.

  • Recent Playlist Posts
  • News Corp. exec suggests Hulu may begin charging in 2010
  • Review: iHome Audio iP1 iPod speaker dock
  • All about iTunes windows
Playlist home View all Macworld blogs

iHome says that the iP1 uses “a complex chip-based algorithm” developed by Bongiovi Acoustics to restore “harmonics, brightness, clarity and presence” while also boosting the bass. How well does the technology work? To my ears, it sometimes works a little too well. The iP1 has a blue button marked with a B that turns the special technology on and off. There’s no doubt that engaging the algorithm makes a big difference. The volume jumps up, and both bass and treble become more pronounced. iHome says that the iP1 boasts 100 watts of power distributed among four speakers; but I found that without the B button on, the iP1 wouldn’t be loud enough to drive any self-respecting party.

iHome iP1
iHome iP1

With rock and pop music especially, using the algorithm can have a good effect. But I found it harsh and unnatural on a jazz piece like Dexter Gordon’s version of “Don’t Explain.” The sound of brushes on cymbals was so bright and distinct that I found it grating.

I also heard a consistent and annoying fuzzy sound below the music on the iP1 I tested. It was particularly noticeable on quieter pieces, such as classical piano works in which it came and went rhythmically, almost like the noise that a scratched LP would produce. I tested the same track on other iPod docks, and the noise disappeared.

The iP1 has a sleek, modern design that I like, but it won’t necessarily be everyone’s cup of tea. The dock’s two 4-inch woofers and two 1-inch tweeters are stuck through a plate of smoky plastic, with the backs of the speakers on display. The arrangement does provide more separation between the speakers than you find in many iPod docks, and that seems to contribute to good voicing between different instruments.

The iP1 comes with a remote that follows the current superslim-controller trend. At about 4 inches long, 2 inches wide, and 0.25 inch thick, it’s pleasantly light (but easy to lose in the couch cushions). The buttons don’t give much tactile response, since they don’t travel far when you push them.

The iP1 will accommodate any iPhone and any dockable iPod. If you don’t have an iPod or iPhone, you can plug anything with a headphone jack into the back of the iP1. The unit also has component- and composite-video outlets, so you can send video from your iPod to your TV.

Macworld’s buying advice

The iP1 is visually striking, and its digital enhancement of compressed music is helpful with some genres. But there are other speaker docks that produce a more natural sound, and I was annoyed by the fuzzy hum underlying the music on the iP1.

[Edward N. Albro is a senior editor for PC World.]

Click here to read article at MacWorld

Related Articles
- DSP Audio System Processors Yorktown Heights NY
Targeted for commercial audio use, the NAV8800 (eight input and eight output, pictured here), NAV4800 (four input and eight output), and NAV3600 (three input and six output) Navigator DSP audio system processors from Sabine feature multiple input and output controllers, control and security options, full matrix mixing, and distributed audio functions.
- Furman Sound ASD-120 Yorktown Heights NY
- Hosa Cables and HDMI Yorktown Heights NY
- HDcodex DML-200c and OEX-400 Yorktown Heights NY
- FIC AZ11EA Motherboard Yorktown Heights NY
- Hotel Sound System Yorktown Heights NY
- Extron's FOX 500 Tx/Rx Fiber Optic Extender Yorktown Heights NY
- Edifier E3350 Yorktown Heights NY
- Independent Transmitters Yorktown Heights NY
- FourTrack for iPhone Yorktown Heights NY