Part of the problem has been that amongst the hundreds of docks available on the market, I was struggling to find one that met my specific criteria of:
- Size - portability was a must-have as I'm on the road a lot
- iPhone - fully compatible without having to shift into Airplane mode
- Charger - a given, as I don't want to carry extra docks and cable around
- Sound - good quality sound in a bedroom or hotel room
- Good looks - I don't want to wake up with something ugly
- Clock and Alarm - basic functions with sleep and snooze facilities
- Price - under £100.00; it's an alarm clock for goodness sake
To be honest I would have liked a dock that could also sync with my MacBook Pro, but that wasn't going to be a show stopper.
iHome's Reson8 or Model iP27 gets a tick mark in all the boxes. It has a relatively small footprint (W26xH4.5xD17 cm) when flat and when unfolded in normal operation (W26xH12xD13 cm). That gives a clue to it's canny design. When travelling the Reson8 lies flat (in it's own included carry case) and when you get to your destination you simply lift up the hinged speaker, plug the iPhone or iPod into one of the provided dock adapters and away you go.
All iPhone functions are available while the iPhone is plugged in, but there is no sync facility as I mentioned. The phone will automatically charge as long as the system is plugged into the mains.
For such a small piece of kit, the Reson8 gives out a belting sound, easily enough to fill a reasonable size bedroom or hotel room without distorting. Pushing up the volume will certainly attract unwanted attention from other paying guests or family members depending on your location. A side mounted switch turns on the EXB or UPRO Wide Stereo function giving extra sound enhancement in the same way that the loudness button works on some stereo systems.
There is a simple LCD clock with a single alarm. Both snooze and sleep functions are provided allowing auto shut down at 90, 60, 30 or 15 minute intervals. The volume in sleep mode is independently adjustable from the normal volume. A four way dimmer switch is available for the display. The alarm works perfectly well in combination with the sleep function. A DST switch is incorporated into the unit for good measure.
The glossy black finish attracts a bit of dust and some grubby fingerprints, but the overall look and feel of the unit is very pleasing. A remote control is provided for many of the functions which has a very firm and durable feel to it.
I paid less than £90.00 including P&P for my Reson8 and I'm delighted with it. It's been well worth the wait. looks good, sounds good, and does everything demanded of it. You can't ask for much more than that...