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PURE Digital Chronos iDock review: PURE Digital Chronos iDock

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Using the iDock is extremely straight-forward and simple. For most people, looking at the instruction manual will be five minutes wasted. For technophobes or grandparents experiencing DAB for the first time, PURE's iDock won't offer any confusion. Buttons are clearly labelled and self-explanatory, and the chunky backlit screen is easy to read.

Sadly, while it's extremely easy to use, sound quality is very poor -- something we hardly ever say about a PURE product. Despite promising an exciting stereo performance for a clock radio, play anything other than voice or quiet music and you'll hear severe distortion. Anything with a bass line at medium to high volume gets extremely distorted and becomes practically unlistenable. It'll work perfectly in waking you up, but if you're a music fan you'll probably punch that snooze button harder than on any previous PURE system. A real disappointment.

In every other aspect of functionality, it performed well, though, such as setting alarms or plugging in external sound sources. Browsing the iPod's menus using the little infrared remote is a cute feature too, especially if you're lucky enough to have an emperor-size bed and the system's more than an arm's length away. You can browse through menus easily, select albums, adjust volume levels and skip through tracks and it'll work with the new iPod line-up too.

This DAB setup had so much promise, but it really let us down. It might be a delight to use, but when your favourite song comes on you'll want to switch it off. Still, features are implemented well, and as an alarm clock it can't be faulted. Just don't expect a lot from the audio performance side of things.

For far better sound quality and a less alarm clock-y form factor, check Intempo's RDI -- another iPod-docking DAB system. Should you not need the iPod functionality, check out any one of PURE's usually impressive line-up of products.

Edited by Jason Jenkins
Additional editing by Shannon Doubleday

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