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HolidayBuyer's Guide
MP3 Players

Philips' spanking new iPod range: Please dock before entering

One, two, three o'clock, four o'clock, dock -- Philips has launched a big fat stack of new iPod dock systems. Peruse your way through our photo gallery for an eyes-on with the new range

Philips has launched a docktastic range of new iPod and GoGear docking systems. These new contraptions vary in form and function, and are each aimed at different areas of your lovely modernist abode.

First up's the MCM398D -- not the most memorable of names, but we've seen far worse. This snazzy little micro system packs two 50W channels, each comprising a subwoofer and a tweeter. Aside from working with your iPod, it'll suck in your data CDs and play back any MP3 or WMA files.

It's on sale this very month for £140. It comes with a Philips remote control which, from experience, is a nice feature -- Philips does make a lovely remote. Click through for more hot Dutch dock action.

Next up, the MCM138D -- this is the brother of the previously mentioned MCM398D, but slightly less powerful, not to mention a hell of a lot more cuboidy.

This model also offers MP3/WMA CD playback functionality, but with two 35W output channels, it doesn't quite have the guts of its big brother. Each of the three cube components can be separately positioned, which is handy. An FM tuner is also built in, should your CD collection and iPod's hard disk not hold quite as much music as you'd like.

This model's on sale this month for £90.

The DCM230 has an integrated docking function, meaning you don't need a plasticky dock hanging around your shelving. At £200 it's the most pound-thieving of all the systems on display and we really can't understand why -- the speakers squeak a comparatively meagre 15W per channel. Compared to the much cheaper MCM398D, 15W is just dung.

What this model does feature is a 'USB Direct' function which, apparently, plays music from 'every other' portable music player you can connect to the USB socket. Interesting. We'll believe this when we see it in action ourselves.

Moving on to our pick of the bunch, the DC199 is a 2.1 system with a chunky sub and separate satellite speakers. The sub houses a questionably sized 102mm (4-inch) driver, an FM tuner and an integrated docking station.

Each of the satellite speakers contain metal drivers and neodymium magnets (not 'neodynium', Philips -- you didn't mean to call it that, did you?) for that little extra touch, and each contain a 7.5W-capable driver.

The DC199 is also available this month for £140.

Finally, we come to the portable little AZ1330D. Like some of the other gear, this model has an integrated docking station, a built-in digital radio (we've not confirmed whether or not this is DAB, but we expect not) and a CD player.

The speakers offer 4W of power output each. That's enough for a portable system, right? We like the top-mounted control system of this model, but we're not entirely sure where the LCD display sits.

The AZ1330D is on sale this month for £100. -Nate Lanxon