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MP3 Players

Wireless, widescreen and wafer-thin: Altec Lansing's new gear

Get set to annoy your neighbours: three new speaker systems from Altec Lansing will be hitting our shores very soon.

Get set to annoy your neighbours: three new speaker systems from Altec Lansing will be hitting our shores very soon.

The black-and-silver, iPod-focused range features a slimmer-than-Nicole-Richie portable model, a wireless home system and an all-in-one speaker dock with a screen that displays iPod video content.

New Altec-Lansing speaker systems M812

  • Price: TBA, but available in North America for US$399.95
  • Wireless home speaker system with a range of up to 30 metres
  • Two 4-inch woofers and 1-inch silk dome
  • Remote control
  • Built-in FM tuner
  • Optional additional speaker for placing in another room
  • Wall mountable

Any good?
iPod in one room, speakers in another? Sounds pretty nifty to us, especially for those parties where you don't want to relinquish music control to your philistine friends -- just program the playlist and hide the iPod dock in a linen closet.

iMV712

  • Price: TBA, but available in North America for US$349.95
  • "Mini-theatre" system that displays video content
  • Two 3-inch neodymium speakers and a 4-inch side-firing subwoofer

Any good?
Expect powerful sound, but the screen resolution is limited by the image quality of your iPod videos. Component and 3.5mm audio-in connections at the rear of the unit allow non-iPod owners to hook up their players. No play or pause buttons on the remote control, which is a little annoying.

We like the idea of watching video content on the iM712's screen rather than on a thigh-burning laptop, but with movies and TV shows not yet available through the Australian iTunes store, there may not be a whole lot of stuff to see. Still, having a video clip play while the song booms out of the speakers gives a jukebox effect that'll make your house feel like the local pub.

iM600

  • Price: TBA, but available in North America for US$149.95
  • Portable stereo sound system
  • Dual 2-inch neodymium drivers optimised for high-frequency extension
  • Built-in FM tuner
  • Comes with rechargeable Li-ion batteries and remote control
  • Can double as a clock radio when plugged into mains power (an AC adaptor is included)

Any good?
We laid our greasy mitts on the iM600 at CES 2007 in Las Vegas early this year. We dug its subwoofer-out feature, which allows for that phat bass line so often missing from ultraportable speaker models (a compatible but non-colour coordinated subwoofer, the BB2001, is also soon to be released by Altec Lansing).