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Klipsch iGroove SXT review: Klipsch iGroove SXT

MSRP: $169.99
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The Good Design; price; sound quality; S-Video output for older video-enabled iPods.

The Bad Video output not compatible with iPhone and 6th-gen video iPods; remote has limited functionality.

The Bottom Line An extremely likeable iPod system, with a superb build and great sound quality considering the price. It's ideal for students and wouldn't be out of place in a bedroom. It's no hi-fi alternative, but for £100 it's very good indeed

Visit manufacturer site for details.

7.5 Overall

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The most popular thing since the iPod is the iPod accessory, or the 'podcessory', if you're funky. Speaker systems for the iPod are among the most popular of the so-called podcessories, and thanks to the popularity of music in heavily compressed formats, cheap and low-quality speakers are plentiful.

But what about systems for those who appreciate high-bit rate or lossless music? The audiophile needn't ignore iPods anymore thanks to Apple Lossless encoding, and Klipsch -- a manufacturer of high-end audiophile hi-fi equipment -- has released an iPod speaker system, the iGroove. At £90 it's certainly affordable, but is it worthy of the Klipsch name in terms of quality?

Design
It would take a blind man with no sense of touch to claim the SXT was not well built. Truly, the affordability of the system belies its superb construction, putting it on par with what we saw from Tannoy's i30. Credit card-style remote controls are often flimsy and tacky, but the SXT's design doesn't cut corners. It's so refreshing to see.

Unlike Tannoy's offering, the SXT features physical volume and power buttons on the main unit itself, so you needn't rely on knowing where the tiny remote is. A pair of reflex ports sit on either side of the system, allowing for some bassy breathing room. Driver specs are pretty good, too: a pair of 64mm woofers team up with two 19mm horn-loaded tweeters, meaning separate drivers handle separate frequencies.

Features
Compatibility with all iPods is a good start, but it works with the iPhone, too. That said, the remote control won't let you browse an iPod's menus -- it simply lets you play, pause, skip forward and the like.

Thanks to a 3.5mm line-in socket to the rear, it will at least work with any other audio device you have lying around. There's no USB socket for using the system as an expensive dock though, unlike Tannoy's seemingly- comparable i30.

Sadly, while older iPod models will be able to output video via the S-Video output, new models -- including the iPod touch and iPhone -- will not. 

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