Pros Although it's not the smallest portable speaker system, its light weight and clippable case make it more portable in real usage than many smaller or similar-sized solutions. Clip it to the outside of your bag and go! Battery life exceeds advertized.
Cons Could be louder for the price. Similar-sized Philips SBA1500 is a bit heavier and has lower battery capacity, but can be found for half the price, and produces similar sound output.
Summary I am a contract kindergarten teacher who travels to a different school each day, and I use my iPod with a portable speaker system in a noisy kindergarten classroom setting. My main requirements for a speaker are 1) portability and 2) volume. Sound integrity is not as important to me.
My first portable speaker system for this function was the Philips SBA-1510, which I bought for about $18. I carried these speakers for months and was generally pleased with them, though in an excessively noisy school, I felt the volume was just slightly too low.
When I first saw the Altec Lansing Oribt-M (iM237), the packaging caught my attention because marketing blurbs announced "exceptional sound" and "amazing volume from such a small speaker", and I have to admit, I was impressed with the attractive design, and the included case, which looked convenient. I figured I might get a volume boost and increased portability to boot, and realized I didn't need stereo speakers for my required function. I would be losing the external power source, but figured I could just carry one more set of batteries with me instead of the power adapter.
So how does the iM237 compare with the SBA1510 (and simliar SBA1500, which doesn't include an external power option)?
Sound: My not-very-demanding ears hear very little difference in either the volume or sound output of the two options. To me, they sound nearly identical. Treble, midtone, and bass output seems very similar. The Philips do provide limited stereo separation, which makes the sound cleaner, but they do have less clarity in the bass than the iM237.
So sound quality being so similar, where the Altec really wins is in portability. Making a slightly smaller package than the Philips, the iM237 really shines with the reduced weight and the clip-and-go case, which means I don't have to put it IN my bag, I can put it ON my bag.
Battery life is another advantage. I get at least double battery performance with the iM237.
And while the Philips are not especially unattractive, the iM237 is simply beautiful design. Altogether minimalist and functional, everything from the neutral silver color to the elegant look to the uncluttered short cord makes this a truly classy looking device.
So the bottom line is that if a slight advantage in portability or its elegant design is most important to you, go for the Altec Lansing iM237, but if you just want a nice sounding portable speaker solution, the Philips SBA1510 or SBA1500 are an excellent choice at a lower price.
Pros - great sound for a small mono spaker
- unbelievable battery life. used it for a week camping on the one set of AAA batteries
- cord is short and winds and clips to base securely
- seem solid and robust (only had them a month)
Cons - on switch sticks out a bit and could be turned on accidentally by a bump in tavel, which would drain the batteries. Should be recessed or a slider switch, but the pro is it's easier to turn on and off. As it is I take the batteries out for travel.
Summary Thoughly recommended as an easily portable self powered solution.
"Poor sound."on by Erwinner81
Pros compact, looks nice, battery life
Cons short cable, sounds very poor, disorts so easily
Summary After one week mine was already broken. I got a very annoying distorted sound while it never has been on a high volume.
Good idea but a bad product.
"Surprisingly Good"on by ascrrc
Pros Sound is smooth, size is easy to handle, batteries last
Cons No AC power option, Bass not overwhelming
Summary A great companion speaker for a laptop. The im237 is quite loud considering its size. The bass is really OK for a speaker of this size. Easily fits in briefcase/bag/purse. I take it with me to the operating room. Sadly, several Altec Lansing T612 speakers I left there were stolen, so I had to give up leaving anything portable in my OR room. If your place is safer, you have a little more space (and about $100), consider the T612. It has more volume and base and is a great product IMHO.
Pros the Altec Lansing Orbit MP3 iM237 has a good battery life of about 24.hrs
good sound four a speaker of its size its highly portable and simple to use it also has a common audio plug so it will connect to most anything you want
Cons the batteries have been place in a odd way that makes one of them difficult to remove and it has no volume or tone controls on the speaker
Summary the Altec Lansing Orbit MP3 iM237 is made to be port able and still have good sound it does both very well its not the loudest speaker around but you want the loudest go buy the WAS 3000