2014 iPad iPhone iPod Buyers' Guide from iLounge.com


Kinivo M2 Bluetooth Speaker System

It used to be that computer speakers were simple things, plugging right into the back of your Mac to play your favorite tunes. Now though, we’re seeing many units with enhanced feature sets. Take Kinivo’s M2 Bluetooth Speaker System ($120). Not only are there two satellites and a subwoofer, but Bluetooth and NFC capabilities are built in, too. Read More


Edifier Luna Eclipse

If Edifier is known for one thing, it’s the unique shapes it comes up with for speakers. Not content with dull boxes, the company has explored all sorts of different designs. Its Mac-friendly Luna Eclipse ($200) is no exception. This handsome set of desktop speakers is unlike anything we’ve seen from other companies in the past, a design that uses its curves to create what’s almost a floating effect. Updated February 3, 2014 with hands-on details. Read More


Kanto YU2

No, we’re not just reprinting our look at Satechi’s AirBass from a few days ago, but we can’t blame you for thinking Kanto’s YU2 ($229) speakers look mighty similar. These are a unique set of speakers, though, visually set apart by handsomely glossy wood cabinets in a bunch of different colors. Some are neutral, but there are also options that may match the decor of an office or home. Read More


Satechi AirBass Active Bluetooth Speakers

Satechi’s AirBass Active Bluetooth Speakers ($130) are a good example of how simple design, executed properly, can lead to an attractive product. Coming in either black or white, these desktop speakers would look really nice next to an iMac or a MacBook. They’re not the fanciest things around, but at this price point, they don’t have to be. Read More

January 7, 2014

Harman/Kardon Aura Wireless Home Speaker System

Harman/Kardon’s Soundsticks speakers have been around for years and years, virtually unchanged aesthetically. Now the company has taken the iconic design of the central component and expanded it to a new product. Aura ($400) is a new speaker system that looks a lot like the Soundsticks’ subwoofer, which was once known as iSub. This time, the transparent dome houses the entire speaker system, and offers pretty much every conceivable way to connect to your Apple devices. It’s a particularly interesting option to pair with Apple’s upcoming Mac Pro, as it’s similarly sized, and can operate wirelessly or with wires as you prefer. Read More


Harman/Kardon Nova 2.0 Wireless Stereo Speaker System

There’s no question Harman/Kardon has extremely talented designers, and its latest speaker set, Nova ($300), is just the latest example. The beautiful system comes with a pair of stereo speakers, each with a clear body, and either white or black accents. Its various input methods allow you to connect to pretty much every device; there’s a 3.5mm plug to connect to standard headphone ports, optical audio for Apple TV and the like, plus Bluetooth. Read More


JBL Pebbles Stereo Computer Speaker System

JBL makes some truly great portable Bluetooth speakers, as well as some nicely priced multimedia speakers. That’s why we have high expectations for the Pebbles Stereo Computer Speaker System ($59). Visually consistent with the company’s recent iOS audio systems, this new pair of speakers will sit on your desk and make a great addition to an iMac. JBL has packed them with 50mm drivers, as well as built-in cable management to reduce clutter. Read More

August 2013

Logitech Bluetooth Speakers Z600

Borrowing the unique soft touch rubber and fabric grille design debuted in UE Boom, Logitech’s new Bluetooth Speakers Z600 ($150) have been tweaked to match the looks and needs of Apple’s MacBooks. Featuring a tapered tube shape that may remind some users of a nuclear power plant, Z600 now consists of two satellite speakers, each packed with three audio drivers. All the controls are hidden on the right speaker, which connects to the left speaker with lay-flat cabling, then to your Mac with either Bluetooth 2.0 wireless or a 3.5mm audio cable. Read More


UltraLink UCubeTrio 2.1 Multimedia Speaker System

While it’s not uncommon for USB-powered stereo speakers to resemble Macs, a subwoofer is almost never part of the equation. But that’s exactly what you get with UltraLink’s UCubeTrio 2.1 Multimedia Speaker System ($350). Along with a pair of 3” square speakers, a 5” square USub subwoofer brings the bass. The silver aluminum and black lacquer materials perfectly match your MacBook or iMac.  Read More


Satechi Dual Sonic Speakers

Satechi’s range of computer accessories is pretty wide, ranging from power strips to USB hubs to remotes and more. The lineup also includes speakers, such as its newest product, Dual Sonic Speakers ($30). Coming in both black and silver, these speakers are designed to augment the sound from your MacBook or iMac, while not taking up too much space on your desk or hitting your wallet too hard. Read More


Orb Audio Mini-T Amplifier V2

It’s not that there’s a lack of speakers that can connect to your Mac, but Orb Audio’s Mini-T Amplifier V2 ($69-$299) expands the range of options you have even further. With the tiny black box—it’s small enough to sit on the foot of your iMac—you can connect standard, non-powered speakers that you might have lying around the house. This newest edition features upgraded hardware and more outputs, as well as a brand-new housing. Read More


Edifier E10 Exclaim 2.0 High Performance Speakers

Edifier’s new E10 Exclaim ($100) speakers are pretty funky looking; it’s a trend we’ve come to expect from the company, and we’re cool with it. Decked out in black and silver, they fit in perfectly next to your iMac or Thunderbolt Display. If the set is anything like other speakers Edifier has put out recently, we expect that neat design to be augmented by truly nice sound. Read More


Edifier Sound to Go Plus

Although it bears more than a passing resemblance to XtremeMac’s Tango Bar, Edifier’s new Sound to Go Plus ($50) is a different kind of speaker. Instead of being designed to sit under your iMac’s screen, this much smaller sound bar can be tossed in a bag and plugged into your MacBook. With a rechargeable lithium battery inside, you’ll get ten hours of playtime off of each charge—more than enough for a day’s use outside. Updated x2 with hands-on pictures and impressions! Read More


Nixon The Block

Nixon’s The Block ($80) is all about convenience, and makes a nice audio solution for desktop or portable Mac users. Rather than requiring two cables—one for audio, the other for USB power—Nixon joins the two cords into one just a few inches from the plug’s end. If you’d rather not drain your MacBook’s battery, the lithium-ion cell inside the speakers can last for up to six hours of playback. But the signature feature here has to do with the speakers’ unique wedged shape.  Read More


JBL Studio 130

If you loved JBL’s recent “weave” design theme but need more power than its inexpensive Jembe speakers, good news: Studio 130 ($299) is here. Incorporating the company’s signature weaved lines into a more traditional boxy wood chassis, each Studio 130 packs a 1” dome tweeter and 4” cone woofer—a driver combination with the crisp treble and deep, powerful bass JBL is known to deliver. Sold as a set of two speakers, this package offers great value for the dollar, though there’s also a catch. Read More

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