Pros Gorgeous design, superb sound quality, remote works 10x better than iM3, seperate bass and treble controls. Just like an old school boombox, you can throw it on your shoulder and walk down the street.
Cons Quality sound brings added weight. No indicator for bass and treble adjustment, you might get mugged walking around with this on your shoulder.
Summary Ordered this from BestBuy.com (they are on sale right now, hurry) Monday (July 18, 2005) evening, it just arrived a few hours ago. Next day shipping only 11 bucks? Sold!
I felt like a kid on Christmas morning when I opened this up. The box does provide quite a bit of ooh and ahh factor, so it should do well in the retail sector. I bought this item without seeing or hearing it first, but I do own the iM3 already and if this was anywhere near as good as the iM3, I really couldn't go wrong.
Let me address the possibility that this unit can scratch your iPod. Bottom line is, 5 seconds after you take your iPod out of the box (unless you are wearing gloves), your iPod is marked with fingerprints. The first time you insert your iPod in a holster or case, it acquires minor scratches. Any accessory you buy for your iPod has the chance of scratching your iPod. If you want a virgin iPod never touched by human hands...don't take the iPod out of the box, just look at the box.
When my iM7 arrived, I fought the urge to just jam my iPod in the cradle for a test run. I decided to examine the mechanism a bit. I opened and closed the cradle several times and played with the ratcheting mechanism. I tried inserting my iPod at the widest setting, then ratcheting the cradle closed, it is still possible to get scratches, but less likely this way then sliding the iPod in and out. I will say I have a 30GB iPod Photo and can see how a 60GB model with the extra depth, might be a little snug.
Apple likes to change the size of the iPod, it seems, on a quarterly basis. Altec-Lansing is trying to make this product work with every iPod ever produced, hence the design compromise. If there was an iM7 model built custom for each iPod model, they would cost up to $400.00 each to compensate for the increased design and distribution costs. This is why a custom piece of plastic we stick our iPod in at home (dock) costs $40.00.Speaking of docks, you can scratch the bottom of an iPod just by placing it in an Apple produced dock.
The sound quality is, hands down, the best I have ever heard from a TRULY PORTABLE iPod sound system. I define truly portable as being able to carry the entire unit comfortably with one hand. The highs are great without being overly "wispy", the bass is not earth shattering, but more than adequate for just about any type of music you wish to listen to.
I do find the unit to be a little on the weighty side and I haven't even put 8 "D" batteries in it yet. The rubberized handle fits my hand comfortably, the garage or dock for the remote is an ingenious idea. My only criticism of the design would be to have an indicator that the remote is working and that bass and treble are going up and down. Volume indicator would be nice so when I press play, I don't get blasted with sound because I forgot to turn the volume down last time I used it. Even something as small as the single LED blinking to indicate when the unit is receiving the IR signal. I also would rather have a pop up handle, it would make me feel more comfortable when transporting $650.00 worth of hardware in one hand. My iM3 came with a nice faux velvet case, this was more expensive and much better looking, I really think for $250.00, we should get a padded case.
I own several small power inverters which I will use in various boats and cars to power the unit. This way I can crank my tunes and charge the iPod at the same time. DC power cord would be nice, but I think I have that issue covered.
The unit is packaged with remote (and battery), several clever power adapters for use outside the USA, AC adapter with fairly long cord, user guide in 10 languages (wow), and a 1/8" to 1/8" patch cord. To prove Altec-Lansing is listening, people were complaining how short the patch cord was with the iM3, now the cord is roughly 15ft long. Ask and you shall receive.
I think this would look great on any desk in any office, especially if that desk is occupied by a PowerMac G5, the two look like they are related. It certainly would be a conversation piece in any home.
Number one question I got today when walking around with the iM7. "What in the world is that?" I told them it was an air filter for a diesel engine. Please Altec-Lansing, make me a padded case for my iM7, so I don't have to continually answer stupid questions.
Pros Amazing sound, powerful bass, portable, seperate bass and treble controls
Cons Turning off the speaker doesn't turn off the ipod
Summary I own 2 Bose SoundDocks (one for my bedroom and one for my office) and the InMotion iM7 sounds at least as good, and costs $50 less. It is now one of my two favorite iPod accessories. The other is my Etymotic ER-4P MicroPro earphones.
Pros all that a portable speaker system should be.
Cons none at all
Summary Looks great. Sounds great. and so what if theres no radio, who listens to radio anyway if they have an ipod. and xm is the way to go anyway. this is the most perfect ipod speaker system yet. with this, you can throw away that 10 year old home speaker system sitting on you desk. and well worth the price.
Pros Excellent Sound Quality
Cons Don't Lose the Remote
Summary I was a little disappointed at first. My iPod Nano wasn't seating correctly using the Nano caddy that came in the box. I saw here that another reviewer had a similar issue (see: scubadiver59 April 27, 2007). I emailed Altec Lansing's customer service and they got right back to me. Apparently the nano caddy that came with my im7 purchase was fitted for the 1st Generation nano, but that the 2nd Generation nano, which I owned, had slightly different specs and wouldn't seat correctly. The email response from the Altec Lansing CSR pointed me to a site where I was able to order, for free, the correct nano caddy. It arrived in about 4 days and fit perfectly. The im7 sounds and looks great. It's great for parties when you set your ipod to randomly play your playlists.
Pros Sounds good, like the different types of electrical adapters, like the ability to connect to various devices with the supplied 3.5mm male-male cable and via SVideo
Cons The supplied Nano caddy doesn't line the iPod Nano correctly and is useless
Summary As long as you don't plan on carrying your iM7 anywhere it's a decent system; if you do, beware that the Nano caddy is quite useless since it lines up the connector about 1/8in too far to the right and you can't connect your Nano to the iM7. So, if you carry the iM7 around you could lose your Nano as it will probably fall out if not damage your iPod connection port. I haven't contacted Altec yet but I'm going to so I can find out if they have a fix for this problem.