Polk Audio miDock 10: First Look

Polk Audio miDock 10: First Look

Yes, it's dark in the iPod cradle area, and yes, you do have to squint to figure out what you're doing.

 

According to Polk Audio, the miDock 10 accommodates all dockable iPods in the depths of its cradle area, which gently opens on oil-dampened hinges when a chrome-plated, easily fingerprintable eject button is pressed. Different sized 'Pods are accommodated by using one of three different "Docking Cradle Adapters" for nanos and minis, or a simple slab of plastic designed to slide into slots in the sides of the cradle area for full-sized iPods. Unfortunately, those slots are labled (above) in a squint-inducing fashion, and the instructions for inserting the adapters are cursory, at best. Trial and error were my installation buddies, but eventually they helped me get the miDock 10 set up to accept my fifth-generation 60GB iPod video.

 

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The miDock 10's ports are dead-center on its back, and clearly labled.

 

As I mentioned above, the miDock 10 will allow you to connect your Mac for syncing your tunes, to other devices for playback, and to headphones for listening - but you'll need to supply your own cables. The "open - close" slider in the photo above gives you access to the miDock 10's battery compartment, which will gobble up eight C-cell batteries for a total of 12 volts of power. That's a lot of batteries, to be sure, but that much power helps the miDock 10 achieve its high-quality output.

 

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Simple and effective - and the remote's battery is included.

 

The miDock 10's remote is small, unobtrusive, and straightforward. Being an infrared remote, it does require a line-of-sight path to the miDock, but we found it to work well even at 10 feet or more. No big deal - it just works.

 

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The Shaggs never sounded quite so good on any affordable iPod bookbox that I've ever listened to.

 

After the mildly annoying setup song-and-dance, and with my iPod finally snuggled comfortably in the miDock 10's cradle, I turned off my iPod's EQ as requested by the manual, pressed the power switch at the top of the unit (which lit up red when switched on), pumped up some bass-heavy rock - and was, quite simply, blown away.

 

This little box sounds great! Althought the miDock is relatively small for a boombox - it's 6-by-16-by-4 inches - and weighs almost nothing without batteries, its side-ported 3.5-inch speakers provide truly impressive sound. I played ska, rock, funk, jazz, string quartets, symphony orchestras, and even a baroque solo violin, and was consistently impressed by the clarity and definition of the overall sound, the precision and separation of the bass, and the crispness of the higher registers. My daughter Roxanne, an Official Teenager™ and thus a highly experienced listener to all things new, also gives it an enthusiastic thumbs-up.

 

I look forward to Roman giving this little guy a full-on review, listening to it in direct comparison with some other well-regarded (and not-so-well-regarded) iPod speaker stands. All on it's lonesome, though, the miDock 10 is a fine little music machine.

 

Points to Consider:

> Small and lightweight

> Great sound - capable of being pretty damn loud, as well

> Effective remote

> About half the price of an Apple iPod Hi-Fi

 

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