With such a wide variety of iPod docking stations and accessories for Apple's iconic and highly successful MP3 player, you can basically find an iPod dock that fits any need and performs any function you want from a speaker dock for iPod. Our iPod dock review and iPod alarm clock review cover the best iPod docks in these two categories, but they are by no means exhaustive in terms of showcasing the wide variety of iPod docks and unique features available to amp up your MP3 listening experience both at home and on the go. One exciting innovation in iPod speaker dock technology comes from XtremeMac a company that specializes in accessories for all things Apple.
The XtremeMac Tango is a remarkable iPod docking solution that infuses a traditional iPod dock unit with Bluetooth wireless connectivity. The Tango TRX is an attractively designed 2.1 stereo system with dual tweeters and midrange drivers and an integrated subwoofer within a lightweight and highly portable enclosure. The main unit has an integrated dock that is compatible with iPhone and most iPod models without the need for dock adapters.
Don't All Docks Do That?
Both the onboard and remote controls are simple, straight forward and to the point. The large, orange-encircled volume knob on the unit is prominently placed on the front of the Tango on the right-hand support stand opposite the dock on the left support. An flush row of buttons along the top of the Tango let you turn the speaker dock on and off, raise and lower the volume, bass and treble, and select the source integrated dock, remote dock or auxiliary 3.5mm audio input jack that allows you to connect any audio source with an audio line output.
The compact, lightweight remote has the same functionality as the onboard controls. It's not the best for skipping through tracks, and is fairly limited in terms of playback controls, however. In addition to controlling playback from the speaker dock and remote, you can also use all of the controls on your iPhone or iPod to select songs and playlists, adjust EQ and volume, and start, stop, skip, fast forward, rewind or pause tracks. Sounds like a pretty standard speaker dock, right?
A Wireless Work and a Wonder
What makes the XtremeMac Tango TRX standout from other iPod docks is its integrated Bluetooth EDR 2.1 technology that enables wireless connectivity over impressive distances. The Tango comes with a separate signal-transmitting mini iPod and iPhone dock that communicates wirelessly with the main unit, which allows you to dock and charge your iPhone or iPod in one room and listen to your music on the main unit in pretty much any other room in your house or office. All you need to do is download and install the free Tango TRX app from the iTunes store or XtremeMac's website on your iPhone or iPod and enable Bluetooth on your device and you're ready to experience the Tango's excellent sound quality remotely.
Apart from being a flat-out cool idea, the Tango's Bluetooth functionality allows you to dock your iPhone or iPod near your computer or in your bedroom and bring the speaker unit with you into the basement, living room, game room, garage or kitchen or wherever, really, within a reasonable distance of several hundred feet and manage your music playback with either the remote or onboard controls. This is perfect for parties or social gatherings, or just for listening around the house by yourself or with your family.
Unlike some wireless audio systems, the Tango actually works well, with virtually no technical difficulties or complex set up procedures. It comes with an instruction manual that is quite thin and doesn't require more than a once-over. After you've set it up and used it once, you may never need the manual again. If for some reason you do require assistance, XtremeMac's website provides tech support via an online support form or toll-free telephone support line, and a link to download their product manuals. Plus, the Tango is covered by a one-year warranty.
Wrap Up: Tango to Go
Of all the iPod docks and iPod clock radios we've reviewed, the XtremeMac Tango TRX is in a class of its own. Its unique Bluetooth connectivity and excellent sound quality that doesn't noticeably diminish over impressive distances make it an excellent option to consider if you're in the market for an iPod speaker dock solution that does what you'd expect and more.
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