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Altec Lansing Orbit iM-237 review: Altec Lansing Orbit iM-237

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MSRP: $39.95

The Good The Orbit MP3 iM237 is a compact, attractively designed portable single speaker that runs off three AAA batteries and comes with a protective carrying case; sound is OK for a speaker this small; integrated cable plugs into headphone jack of MP3 players and other devices.

The Bad While it's inexpensive, this model is a bit pricier than the previous Orbit; overall thin sound; distorts at higher volumes.

The Bottom Line We like the new and improved version of Altec Lansing's portable single speaker, the Orbit MP3, better than the previous model--but it costs a bit more.

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6.7 Overall
  • Design 8
  • Features 6
  • Performance 6

It's the little iPod speaker that could. The Orbit iM207, Altec Lansing's inexpensive mobile iPod speaker, has a new design and new name: the Orbit MP3 iM237. The new model's got a handful of little upgrades that make it a bit better than its predecessor.

This single speaker is about the size of two hockey pucks stacked on top of each other and weighs only 6.7 ounces (with batteries). That shape doesn't quite make it pocket friendly, but it takes up very little room in a bag when traveling.

The Orbit runs on three AAA batteries for about 24 hours and has a hideaway cord that plugs into the 3.5mm headphone jack on just about any portable electronic product--any MP3 player, all iPods and iPhones, laptops, and portable DVD players. The $40 speaker ships with a protective carrying case (with a convenient belt-clip carabiner) and a lanyard to strap around your wrist (at least, we think that's what it's for).

The understated Orbit iM237 now features an on/off button that lights when the speaker is on. On the earlier model, some people complained that without a light it was easy to forget that the unit was on and the batteries would run down.

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