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The i-XPS 120 keeps your iPod safe from the perils of outdoor living, but its sound can’t match its protective abilities.
You might not think taking your expensive portable technology into rugged terrain, but there’s no reason to use the excuse that your MacBook or iPod are too delicate to take outside as to eschew the great outdoors—or an opportunity to exercise and breathe fresh air. With the proper gear, your tunes can venture outside with you and go back inside no worse for the wear.
Hercules i-XPS 120 Outdoor iPod Speaker Dock. Sturdy is the best word to capture the overall feel of this compact iPod speaker. That first impression is important for a unit that promises to keep your iPod safe from dust or water during use outdoors. Even more importantly, the i-XPS 120 keeps that promise, while providing respectable sound for small outdoor areas.
The dock hugs an enclosed iPod inside a padded clamp, which itself is locked behind a vertical door that latches at the bottom of the unit. The design keeps the iPod immobile and dry.
In terms of sound quality, the unit is similar to other speaker docks near its price range. The most noticeable shortcomings are bass response and distortion at higher volumes. The recessed handhold works best for carrying the unit short distances. Still, we loved the freedom of being able to listen to podcasts while the kids splashed in the backyard pool.Outdoorsy types will appreciate the i-XPS 120’s rugged design. Audio snobs should skip it.