Altec Lansing inMotion iM7 Portable Speakers | iLounge

Reviews

1

I admit it...I'm smitten with this accessory. All the Altec Lansing products I have purchased have always been above average and worth their price. This unit is comprehensive, complete, and a wonderful design. It looks as though Apple actually made it.

Posted by FahrenheiPod 451 on June 15, 2005 at 10:13 PM (PDT)

2

I still say that buying an old JVC Kaboom Box and using the AUX port is a MUCH better alternative, and cheeper. More volume, more bass, DURABILITY, shoulder strap, and a "full" remote. You can plug the iPod into the remote control case and run the AUX line to the box. I've even seen the on several occasions being used as monitors for dj's at clubs.

Rich, THUMPING sound, even in open spaces outdoors.

http://www.jvc.com/product.jsp?modelId=MODL027366&pathId=37&page=1 (ignore the MSRP, you can find them at many places for under $200)

Posted by LilAlienD in Maryland on June 16, 2005 at 7:00 AM (PDT)

3

shweet! could you roll it around and still listen to the music?

Posted by punkrockavocado in VA on June 16, 2005 at 7:29 AM (PDT)

4

I've been captivated by the iM7's design since I first saw it. If it's loud enough for me to use as PA speakers, I'm going to have to seriously consider purchasing it, even though my iPod is a 2G.

Beautiful dock design, it does look very much cassete inspired.

Posted by minty on June 16, 2005 at 2:13 PM (PDT)

5

Hey Lil AlienD good idea for the JVC product but I have one question after looking at the website of the JVC product you linked above. It doesnt state or say if the JVC is battery powered or not? is it? I know most people dont want the battery option or the weight. But being out and about on job sights its nice to have the battery option when there is no power source like out by the pool on summer vacation. I love the new IM7 I saw it last night at the Apple store. It it sounds fantastic! even in the large echoing Apple store. It still showed great deep rich sound in that stores challenging room. It looks so ultra cool and stylish and futuristic "Can we say Space Oddyssy 2000" Would look really good in my bedroom on or near a nightstand. But Lil AlienD let me know if the JVC is battery option or not.

Posted by viscara on June 16, 2005 at 3:52 PM (PDT)

6

If we bought a programmable IR remote and reprogrammed it for the IM7, I wonder if we would get better range....

Posted by K Nakamura on June 17, 2005 at 3:09 AM (PDT)

7

viscara,
Yes it is battery powered. I've taken it to several events and occasions, boardwalk, beach, pools, etc. etc. I forget what it actually takes though.

Posted by LilAlienD in Maryland on June 17, 2005 at 6:01 AM (PDT)

8

Does anyone know when dealers will have the iM7? Altec's store says they're "now shipping" but they also quote a 2 week lead time. Altec's store is accepting orders (at the full MSRP price of course) but nobody else I can find, even Amazon, lists the iM7 on their websites yet. It would seem they're either not released yet or Altec is holding them back from dealers to milk some extra profit out of the initial demand by only selling them direct at full price? Does anyone here, besides the reviewer's sample, actually HAVE one?

Posted by avguy on June 17, 2005 at 10:22 AM (PDT)

9

I had ordered one from the Altec Lansing Website on Wednesday(It said 2 weeks shipping). I then decided to call the Apple store in Santa Monica yesterday and they had a few in stock, so I called and cancelled my order and went and picked one up at the Apple Store. I didn't have too much time to play with it but when I did the sound was great. The system was more compact than I thought, which I liked but still has enough power and clarity to really liven up a party. I definately recommend it so far. My only complaint is that it seemed to scratch my ipod lightly on both sides(40gb photo).

Posted by sws5 on June 17, 2005 at 12:15 PM (PDT)

10

LilAlienD - I am a proud owner of one of the original (black and silver) JVC Kaboom boomboxes you're referring to. I paid $250 for it new about 5 years ago. It sounds pretty decent for a boombox, but makes no effort to sound natural. The bass is amazing (2 6" side drivers for bass) and it actually pushes a fair amount of power. No real sound tuning options, and NO skip protection on the CD player. It wound up collecting dust for pretty much that reason alone. Horrible CD mechanism. Once I finally got an iPod (mini) though, this baby is suddenly a fire-breathing ghettobox of doom! It's got a set of aux inputs that can handle either a headphone-size line level input or a guitar-sized plug (adjustable)! It's really more of a "luggable" system, the thing must weigh over 20 pounds without batteries (8 D cells, I think). The model that followed mine was a little cheaper and smaller but had a drum pad on it! I was really surprised to see that JVC is making an updated version of the one I own. This new one has a better CD player and can play mp3 CDs, apparently. Otherwise it's pretty much identical to mine, right down to the "Active Clear Sound" and "Super Exciter Bass Circuit" hooplah. This is the portable equivalent of the plasticky Aiwa-style 3-piece dorm room stereo kit. Plays decently loud. For a boombox, this thing goes up to eleven. I've been thinking about hot-gluing an Apple iPod Dock to the top of the darn thing - patent pending!

Posted by keville on June 17, 2005 at 10:24 PM (PDT)

11

Just an update. My im7 ipodholder, would not clip back in so I took it back to the apple store to exchange it. There, they told me that they had sent back all of their Im7 units due to a recall because of an issue with the power supply. Does anyone else now anything about this? I intend to go get antoher one when they restock them but for now I am just going to wait.

Posted by sws5 on June 19, 2005 at 6:36 PM (PDT)

12

Don't mind me, I'm just nit picking. Sub sonic refers to "less than audible" sounds which are in the range of either under 20Hz or above 20kHz (which BTW most people cannot even hear that well). I beleive what you're refering to are the bass ranging from 80Hz and below. Soundwaves become nondirectional under 80Hz and technically a driver that is dedicated to soundwaves below 80Hz can be placed next to a listener facing any direction and not be deteceted. A subwoofer design with the driver facing down (down firing) are not designed to "shake" the floor. It is taking advantage of what is called the boundary effect, which the bass gets amplified when in close proximity to a wall or the floor. You can get more bass (with the expense of increasingly muddied sound overall) by placing a speaker at the corner of a room.

Posted by poisonfist on June 20, 2005 at 6:07 PM (PDT)

13

I had been watching the backordered status on this item on the Altec Lansing website, and when I noticed that it was changed to available last week, I ordered a unit.

Free shipping, and it said to allow 2 weeks for receipt. I was offhandedly hoping it would get to me before my July 4th week at the beach, but wasn't counting on it. Low and behold, it showed up this Monday after I ordered it just the previous Thursday!

First impressions: solidly built unit; iPod "door" seems a bit flimsy, but I guess no worse than any cassette door; the "carrying handle" is a joke, although comfortable; the short power cord is a real irritant. I don't have a problem with the remote--the operating distance hasn't caused a problem for me yet. Oh, and I'm a bit worried about losing the remote when moving the unit--not sure how tightly the slot for it will hold it in place.

For my preferences, the sound reproduction is incredible. If you like a nice solid bass thump, this is the choice for you, but it also has a nice mid and high range output.

My advice is that if your local Apple store has this in stock, bring your own music and listen to all the speaker choices, consider your usage needs (always at home, always portable, a mix of both) and make your decision that way.

Glad I waited and didn't get the IM3--this is much less portable, but the sound quality difference is worth the heavier weight/larger size. I doubt that I would ever use the batteries, since where I intend to use it away from home (beach house, pool, BBQ's) will always have electric power available.

RLC

Posted by RLC in New Jersey on June 22, 2005 at 2:12 AM (PDT)

14

My powerbook recently lost its audio so i was thinking of getting an im7 to get back the sound as the headphone jack still works. Unfortunately Ilive in Italy where it seems impossible to buy the im7 or europe in general.

Posted by Nick Dring on June 24, 2005 at 1:44 AM (PDT)

15

Beautiful.

Posted by TheCritic in Mumbai,India. on June 27, 2005 at 2:59 AM (PDT)

16

I inquired about the iM7 at one of the local Apple stores over this past weekend; apparently this store has yet to receive any replacement stock for the early inventory that they had to send back to A-L. They also didn't confirm or deny that the problem that caused the returns was due to the power supply, though the person I spoke to may not have been the sharpest tool in the box when it came to the iM7.

As for the portability of its size; this is PUNY in comparison to the ghetto blasters we used to lug around back in the '80s. However, it would have been NICER and cleaner solution if A-L made the unit rechargeable, instead of forcing a user to go with NiMH and a separate charger.

I'm surprised at how people complain about the price of speakers...in many quality STEREO separates systems (never mind multi-channel), the speakers are typically budgeted to be the AT LEAST same price as the most expensive component. Arguably, speakers dictate MOST how good a system will sound (the amp is next, IMO). As the reports on how GOOD the iM7 sounds keep surfacing, I'd think $250 would be money well spent, especially given the existing sonic quality--or lack thereof--of most of its competition.

Posted by flatline response on June 28, 2005 at 12:24 AM (PDT)

17

I visited one of our local Apple stores (Arlington, VA) last week to take a look at the IM7. None available and was told they had been sent back to correct a problem with the iPod door. The woman helping me indicated that she felt they sounded better that the Bose SoundDock. Yesterday I was at another local Apple store (Tysons Corner, VA) and they had an IM7 on the floor, but none available for purchase. The one on the floor sounded great but had a broken iPod door (it wouldn't stay closed). No timetable from either store as to when they expect the replacement units.

Anyone have any updates from Altec or Apple?

D/

Posted by DC POD on July 3, 2005 at 9:21 AM (PDT)

18

MY IM7 SCRATCHES MY IPOD PHOTO!

for those of you out there with ipod photos, i have to warn you to stay away from the altec lansing im7. mine has put some pretty deep vertical scratches on my ipod photo. even at its widest setting, the ipod tray is too tight for the ipod photo. on top of that, support from im7 is horrendous. 4 phone calls over 3 weeks and not even a promised return phone call so far...

Posted by James Yuan on July 15, 2005 at 11:38 AM (PDT)

19

I finally listened to one of these tubes at the Apple Store yesterday...over most of the frequency range I easily preferred these over pretty much everything else in the single-chassis speaker system market. The Bose SoundDock sitting next to it came in a distant second SQ-wise in my informal side-by-side. But I wasn't all that pleased with the bass performance with the unit as it was set up in the Apple Store; when the volume was turned up it was too easy to oversaturate the low end. There's plenty of bass, yes, but it wasn't CLEAN, TIGHT bass. I couldn't figure out how to adjust the bass level as mentioned in the Horwitz review, mainly because there was no remote to be found. I really dislike such utter dependance on an easy-to-misplace wireless control, but such is the age we live in. Give me built-in controls anyday.

Still, the iM7 seems like a relative bargain given the sonic quality it seems to be capable of. But someday I've got to listen to one with the bass leaned out just to be sure.

Posted by flatline response on July 15, 2005 at 5:52 PM (PDT)

20

My iPod 60 also SCRATCHED by IM7

I was able to get a refund, but it took a while after I contacted support by e-mail before "the appropriate department" responded. The guy who arranged the refund had the nerve to say they've never had any problems with scratches - he even had his own iPod 60 without any problems.

It's a terrible design to slide your iPod into such a tight holder, especially with the iPod Photo since it's thicker than other iPods.

Phredd

Posted by Phredd on July 31, 2005 at 12:31 PM (PDT)

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