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  • A True "First" in Solar Powered iPod Speakers?



    Our awesome readers here at MMI have grown quite fond of being the "first" to comment in response to the articles, analysis, and other commentary posted to these hallowed forums. But when it comes to true "firsts," Hammacher Schlemmer - the maker of some pretty "far out there" devices - readily comes to mind. Case in point: the "First Solar Powered iPod Speaker." At least, that's what this nifty little thing has been dubbed. But what makes it unique?

    For starters, it's both solar powered and comes replete with a IPX-4 waterproof rating. In other words, you can take it outside, to the beach, or near the pool and not have to worry about a drop of water ruining your speakers. It does, however, require about 3 hours of solar charging to get one full hour of use. According to the maker, the system works with most iPods, iPhones, and MP3 players. And, in case you're wondering, yes, it can still plug into AC.

    Yes, there are drawbacks and limitations, but it is environmentally sound, and that's what the maker is stressing in its release. Additionally, Hammacher Schlemmer says their newest product is Housed within a "rugged, rubberized and aluminum body," making it extra durable. And if you're wondering about the sound quality, yours truly hasn't heard the system in action, but it comes packed with two 5-watt, full-range speakers to provide "crisp highs, balanced mid-ranges, and resounding, bass-boosted lows."

    As you might expect, the "First Solar Powered iPod Speaker" isn't cheap. They are available now for $199.95 each.

    Image via Hammacher Schlemmer
    This article was originally published in forum thread: A True "First" in Solar Powered iPod Speakers? started by Michael Essany View original post
    Comments 16 Comments
    1. rhekt's Avatar
      rhekt -
      they really need to incorporate this into the iphone. not as the individual source of power. but as a continuous backup.
    1. jot9011's Avatar
      jot9011 -
      Interesting idea however I wouldn't make a big deal about it being waterproof. When the solar panel is open for charging (which is the whole idea of this device..no?), the iPhone is exposed in the dock, which is most certainly not impervious to water destruction.
    1. iPhone3G[S]'s Avatar
      iPhone3G[S] -
      It looks like a big POS...
    1. rhart96's Avatar
      rhart96 -
      Quote Originally Posted by rhekt View Post
      they really need to incorporate this into the iphone. not as the individual source of power. but as a continuous backup.

      There are some iphone/ipod cases that do that
    1. vruls's Avatar
      vruls -
      OMG id rather buy another ipt in that price
    1. JacquesChirac's Avatar
      JacquesChirac -
      hahahah I'd like to see someone waste their money on this.

      "you can take it outside, to the beach, or near the pool and not have to worry about a drop of water "

      yea? What about when your ipod falls in the water with it

      "it comes packed with two 5-watt, full-range speakers"
      5-watts is like nothing. Those crappy portable $2 speakers from china carry more juice. If you want real sound, you want 1000 watt speakers
    1. BlackHoleSlam1994's Avatar
      BlackHoleSlam1994 -
      Will you guys be doing a give away of these speakers
    1. sandstorm77's Avatar
      sandstorm77 -
      Quote Originally Posted by jot9011 View Post
      Interesting idea however I wouldn't make a big deal about it being waterproof. When the solar panel is open for charging (which is the whole idea of this device..no?), the iPhone is exposed in the dock, which is most certainly not impervious to water destruction.
      If its raining out it is cloudy hence no charging from the sun.
    1. DisneyRicky's Avatar
      DisneyRicky -
      Quote Originally Posted by BlackHoleSlam1994 View Post
      Will you guys be doing a give away of these speakers
      I think they have to!
    1. whereswaldo's Avatar
      whereswaldo -
      The bit about firsts made my day
    1. thevmax's Avatar
      thevmax -
      Quote Originally Posted by iPhone3G[S] View Post
      It looks like a big POS...
      For $200 you can still buy a pair of AR Powered Partners, which have 35 WATTS EACH in dedicated amps built into the cabinets, with separate Volume, Treble, & Bass Controls on each speaker... 35 WATTS EACH versus 5 watts each!
    1. extremzocker's Avatar
      extremzocker -
      not something i will be wasting my money on
    1. sziklassy's Avatar
      sziklassy -
      Quote Originally Posted by JacquesChirac View Post
      hahahah I'd like to see someone waste their money on this.

      "you can take it outside, to the beach, or near the pool and not have to worry about a drop of water "

      yea? What about when your ipod falls in the water with it

      "it comes packed with two 5-watt, full-range speakers"
      5-watts is like nothing. Those crappy portable $2 speakers from china carry more juice. If you want real sound, you want 1000 watt speakers
      s far as your first point, you must be a pretty clumsy fool to drop something like that into the water. Furthermore, they are not selling it as something you would go diving or surfing with. The idea is, it is made for outdoor use. A splash of water isn't going to kill it. Drop your car into the pool and see how it does. That doesn't mean it can't take rain, snow, or other weather conditions.

      As far as your second point, you are right in that five watts is small. Again, it is not being sold as a surround sound for your home or even as a car stereo. It's for outdoor use such as poolside, picnics, etc.

      I am not defending the product, I wouldn't really consider one, especially at the price when much better options are out there. But the points you make are ludicrous.
    1. rhekt's Avatar
      rhekt -
      Quote Originally Posted by rhart96 View Post
      There are some iphone/ipod cases that do that
      never heard of em'
    1. JAG2621's Avatar
      JAG2621 -
      Quote Originally Posted by iPhone3G[S] View Post
      It looks like a big POS...
      I do not think it will be a big hit. i understand the makers idea but the speakers being waterproof does not do much good if the device mounted in it is not waterproof or protected for the water in some way. "Hey! the speakers still work but the iphone died after getting wet"
    1. Phillies2606's Avatar
      Phillies2606 -
      I need something for outdoors...so that would help a lot