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Apple iPod Hi-Fi

What’s good is that it won’t distort horribly, when you really push it. The sound is very full and deep with plenty of presence and expression. The delicate stripped down introduction to George Michael’s Patience album were rendered better on the Apple set than any of the other’s with the vocals and piano sounding more real. In tracks like this the sound was warm and inviting. Bassy, dancier tracks also sounded great. However, when it came to music with more complex passages the sound simply got muddled. The problem is that the frequency response at the upper range is lacking, and that affects the whole nature of the sound. In brighter, guitar filled rock tracks however, they actually sounded pretty harsh. Additionally, the Apple set struggle to hide the fact than the cones are contained in one box, which means that the sound stage in inherently restricted.

Are the Apple’s speakers truly Hi-Fi then? Well simply put, no, they’re not. If you want something that Hi-Fi and you want to combine it with an iPod the best route will be something like this dock from Onkyo, which connects up to one of its amps combined with a decent set of speakers. Denon also has a similar system. It will cost more than the Apple one box but it will sound better. The disadvantage of these set ups is that they’re not easily portable. If you’re looking for a Hi-Fi that you won’t be moving then don’t buy the Apple speakers - go for one of the aforementioned proper Hi-Fi systems. However, if the portability and convenience appeals then the Apple Hi-Fi has a niche, though we still have our reservations over the name.

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