A good speaker dock provides an attractive place to recharge your portable device and crank out some tunes, and it may even act as an alarm clock. They're a common fixture for most modern living rooms and bedrooms, keeping us entertained and ensuring that our iPods and iPhones stay charged.
With the iPad, Apple introduced a new portable product into our vernacular, and several companies, including iLuv, have responded with new lines of iPad-specific speakers and charging stations. The iLuv iMM747 ($149) is one such product, adapting a traditional, basic speaker dock design to the wider form of the iPad.
Arguably, the iPad's size and its tendency to be wrapped in third-party cases make it an awkward match for any type of docking product. As a consumer, it's certainly worth exploring other audio solutions that don't rely on a dock connection. Already, we're seeing companies such as Logitech and Aliph approach iPad owners with wireless speaker solutions, taking advantage of the iPad's Bluetooth audio capabilities.
That said, if you have your heart set on a speaker dock for your iPad, the iLuv iMM747 is one of only a few options out there. Its major competitor is the iHome iA100, which offers more features, but comes at a higher price of $199.
The iLuv iMM747measures 5 inches tall, 14.5 inches wide, and 5 inches deep, putting it in the same ballpark as most iPhone and iPod speaker docks. By comparison, the Editors' Choice Award-winning Logitech S715i speaker has nearly the same footprint.
The first thing we noticed when we picked up the iLuv iMM747 is its lightweight, flimsy-feeling design. The construction is plastic through and through, with a low-budget fit and finish that's a stark contrast to the iPad's glass and aluminum. There are some highlights, such as the self-adjusting dock stand that accommodates iPods, iPhones, and iPads alike. The dock connection itself also has a little back-and-forth give to compensate for devices that are different sizes.