Hands on: The absolute best portable iPod speaker

It’s black and unassuming but the Logitech Rechargeable Speaker S715i packs a surprising punch. If you expect the usual flat and tinny performance we have come to accept from portable speakers, prepare to be amazed.

The Logitech S715i is 15.5-inches wide by 5.25 inches-tall by 2-inches thick. While it’s a little bigger than tiny, it can still fit in a backpack or bag and it is not at all heavy. On the front panel there are buttons for power and volume as well as a covered iPod dock that flips back into a  kickstand.  The back is pretty bare with two rear facing passive drivers and a rubber flap covering the power port and the auxiliary stereo input jack.

I used that auxiliary input to try out the S715i with my old Zune player and the Orb Music Player..see recent review.. that allows me to play music from my PC over my home network. They are sitting on the included carrying case.

The iPod connecter swivels just enough to accomodate all current iPods and iPhones. But, if you have a first, second or third generation iPod you will need an adapter to connect to the auxiliary input on the back. When the iPod is plugged in to the connector it is not being charged by the speaker so bear in mind that it is running on its own battery power.

This tiny little remote control is pretty limited..it controls the power, volume and will allow you to pause, skip forward and backward, turn on shuffle and repeat. To do anything more complicated you must use the iPod interface.

Ihe S715i is pretty bare bones, no FM radio, no clock but then you have those on your iPod anyway.. it makes up for those minor shortcomings by the noise it makes. The sound from all three sources I tried was nothing short of outstanding. distortion free with reasonable bass..and enough room on the volume to wake up even the heaviest sleeper or disturb the neighbours. The performance is better when it is plugged in..more volume and better bass but there is nothing wrong with the preformance when running on the rechargeable battery. At moderate volume you should get about 8 hours from the battery.

I can’t be too clear about this, I have tried over a dozen less than $250 portable speakers and none hold a candle to the Logitech S715i. It is absolutely the best in this price range and even better, it sits at the bottom of this range at a street price of $149. If you need a portable speaker to take on the road or bring music to different rooms in the house the Logitech S715i is the one to get.

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3 Responses to Hands on: The absolute best portable iPod speaker

  1. Steven Bely says:

    Hi Bob, a friend recently asked me to suggest a Apple iPad speaker. I suggested that since he also had an iPhone, that the Altec Lansing Octiv Duo might fit his needs. It is not portable, but does allow you to charge two apple devices at the same time, and also sync them using an app, has excellent sound ( for under $100) and comes with a cool remote and additional aux input and USB charging port. It recently won 2011 CES award for design and engineering….

    My friend was quite surprised at the sound, and says it looks great on his desk.

    Cost $99.95

    Here is the link: http://www.alteclansing.com/ae/us/ipod-iphone-speakers/octiv-duo-m202/invt/m202/

    One note: I would wait and see if it becomes available in local stores, because there is a catch when ordering from the Altec Lansing US site; they use UPS, which charges a ridiculous $30 brokerage fee, on top of HST and shipping fees….they really should swap carriers, I believe Fed-Ex has a more reasonable flat $10 rate for brokerage….

    The product should be soon available in Canadian stores that carry Altec Lansing products, and hopefully will be priced similarly, thereby avoiding the shipping and brokerage fees.

    Steve…

  2. Pingback: Tweets that mention Hands on: The absolute best portable iPod speaker | Home Technology in Montreal -- Topsy.com

  3. Perfect just what I was searching for! .

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