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Sony SRS-GD50iP review



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One of the things I like about Sony is that – most of the time – it’s realistic about conditions in the market. How else could you explain this premium PC desktop speaker set which doubles as a dock, not for Sony’s own excellent Walkman players, but Apple’s more successful iPod line? In fact, this is a fantastically sensible product all-round, combining a USB PC speaker system with an iPod charging cradle, and allowing you to output PC and iPod audio and sync your iPod with iTunes all using the same bundle.

There’s no need to have multiple speaker systems in your living room or study, and no reason to fiddle around with lightweight cradles or USB cables. Instead, there’s always somewhere to keep your iPod charged and synced, and you can use the Apple player as your main music source with your PC switched off. It makes you wonder why so few manufacturers have tried something like this before.

The SRS-GD50iP system consists of four main components; a dock/control station which connects to your PC or notebook via USB, two 10W satellite speakers and a 40W subwoofer. The satellites are compact cubes which, thanks to their simple grille and matt-black finish, are very discrete. The subwoofer, meanwhile, is a similarly understated passive effort which could easily be mistaken for an old-fashioned bookshelf Hi-Fi speaker.

The control station is the really interesting bit, with the iPod dock sitting above a large rotary volume control which sits flush with the casing, with a circular red volume indicator inching steadily around it as you push the level upwards. Call me superficial, but I think it’s the coolest iPod cradle that I’ve ever seen.

At the rear of the control station you’ll find standard 3.5mm jack outputs for the satellite speakers, and a proprietary connector for the sub. The system is powered by a 19V external brick, and there’s also a 3.5mm line-in jack for use with other media players or (with the right adaptor) a games console.

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  1. Sony SRS-GD50iP iPod dock --used



January 21, 2010, 11:26 am

Did you test this with a 3GS? I have been struggling to find a dock that charges the 3GS so this may fit the bill for me.


January 21, 2010, 2:41 pm

I actually meant to put this information in - Sorry. I tested with a 2G iPod Touch and 3G Nano, but Sony explicitly claims compatibility with the iPhone 3G and 3GS, so I can't see any problem.



January 21, 2010, 5:00 pm

Slightly off topic, but could you recommend a 2.1 system for under £60? It needs to sound as good as it can, look good and have a secondary input, preferably an Aux/3.5mm headphone jack input.

The aux input I use for my PS3 is broken on my Sony SRSD211.CEK 2.1. I may just buy a second set of the aforementioned speakers, but any recommendation from people on her would be much appreciated


January 21, 2010, 7:36 pm

I'd be interested to hear what Hugo and Andy might have to suggest, but if it were my money I wouldn't go for a 2.1 system at all, but Creative's much-loved GigaWorks T20 set. The sound quality is brilliant for the money (roughly £55) and I've never found myself missing a subwoofer, whether playing games, listening to music or watching movies. I actually spent a couple of evenings in November playing Uncharted 2 with the T20s and a projector, and the little speakers never had any problem filling the room with immersive sound.

Otherwise, I'd take a look at Logitech's X-230 set. I've never formally reviewed them, but they're cheap and cheerful, and make s much bigger sound than you'd expect.


January 21, 2010, 7:46 pm

Not wanting to sound lazy or uninspired, but: what Stu said. The T20's are an excellent pair of speakers.


January 21, 2010, 8:32 pm

Thanks very much, I'm actually looking at the Creative Gigaworks T40 Series II now you have found those for me. I might go that little extra. Thanks


January 21, 2010, 8:40 pm

I have a Logitech X-230 downstairs, I bought them for my dad's PC last Christmas. I was pleasantly surprised at the quality for such a low price. I'm pretty sure I paid £35 then which is less than the now asking price I just saw on Amazon.

Anyhow, maybe a review of Logitech's X-230 would be very helpful to many others... after all, don't most people buy products in the lower price range. I have a vague memory of searching this site for a review for these speakers just before I bought them. Still bought though them as I'm usually happy with logitech

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