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We pay a significant premium for size in the tech sector: the smaller it is the more it costs. This logic would be maddening to most markets – what would your reaction be to an estate agent or car salesman? – but, with the exception of displays, when it comes to our gadgets we except it without question. If some cases we really shouldn't...
Making a case for the more traditional argument that size matters is Lenco. The Swiss audio specialist has unveiled the second generation of its 'iPod Tower', the apty named 'iPod Tower 2' (IPT-2) and it is good enough to cause a serious rethink for those looking to buy a new dock.
Before we get to that, however, let's address the key talking point: size. The IPT-2 is 208 x 189 x 870mm or 315 x 305 x 933mm with the bundled base stand. The shock for a world used to ever smaller and more powerful iPod docks is the height, but we'd argue the footprint is actually more interesting. At 208 x 189mm the IPT-2 is actually smaller than Arcam's remarkably compact rCube and since it is designed to be freestanding the near one metre height is crucial. Given the IPT-2 also won't use up any desk space it's arguably far more compact than it appears.
So how has Lenco used this space? It all truth, quite simply. This is no bad thing. There IPT-2 has a 33 per cent increase in power for the Tower 1 outputting 80W RMS (composed of two 25W speakers and a 30W subwoofer), plus an SD/MS/MMC card reader, LED display, sleep timer and FM radio with 60 presents. An auxiliary input backs up the iPod dock (which, as expected, charges the iPod/iPhone connected)and front controls allow the treble and bass to be adjusted. Build quality is good even if we'd have preferred the matt finish of the top to replace the piano black used on both sides.
There are hints of cost cutting. The base stand feel cheap, but does its job keeping the dock securely upright. Meanwhile the remote is well looks and feels like one you'd find in a cheap supermarket. Response requires direct line of sight and there are layout questions with small volume buttons positioned at the very bottom of the remote. That said none of this matters given how the IPT-2 performs...
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