For any music lover, the combination of ipod player and clock/radio offered in the iHome Audio Player, manufactured by SDI Technologies, is a perfect way to kill several proverbial birds with just one product. In one machine, you have a digital clock, a radio, an ipod charger and player, and even portable speakers for a hand-held CD player!
As a system, the player is as convenient as it is functional, with its light weight and battery/ac power capabilities. You can use two AA batteries for portable use, or you can simply leave it plugged in, safely on top of your nightstand. Also, the player comes with a small remote that allows for volume control, alarm setting, and song-changing. However, one of the few down sides to the machine, the included remote is potentially helpful, but generally does not work unless you are relatively close to the machine and point directly at it. Despite this minor setback, the player is quite easy to master manually – I was able to set the time and alarm within minutes.
As for sound, the player compares to any relatively high-quality clock/radio on the market. It would be a stretch to say it rivals a more expensive Bose system in sound quality and range, but this player is certainly not to be considered cheap in terms of its output. The “Reson 8 Sound Chamber Technology” boasted definitely gives the machine a good quality sound for general purposes. In other words, you wouldn’t be using the machine to run a school dance or corporate event, but it easily fills a room with a decent balance of treble and bass. In terms of its functionality, the mulitple ipod capabilities make it a great gadget to have as a personal alarm clock or at a party. The system comes with several very easily used plastic attachments and a “line-out” function allowing for its use with every type of ipod on the market, from “nano” to the biggest.
With its alarm clock capabilities, the machine is more versatile than any other clock/radio on the market that springs to mind. You can set the machine to wake you with the radio, a buzzer, or your ipod, all of which can be done with a “gradual sleep feature” so that you can ease into sleep or slowly awake. The alarm is easily utilized and the buttons are all lit for easy legibility, and the player distinctly beeps to insure you that it has been properly set.
Anyone who owns an ipod and is in the market for an updated alarm clock should definitely consider this easy-to-use, inexpensive machine which sells at many retailers for under a hundred dollars. Between its functionality as a music player and its ease as an alarm clock, it will surely be one of your best buys this year.
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