It’s 2017, and wireless music is everywhere, but that isn’t to say it’s to everybody’s taste. There are people who still prefer the more “classic” approach to playing music. Now, I’m not talking about turntables and tape decks, I’m talking about docking stations…
Remember them? Keep your iPod/phone on charge while playing music through your device? During the 2000’s these were a very popular product, with the B&W Zeplin gracing the homes of many around the world but as time moved on, the likes of Bluetooth and multiroom systems have since sent docks into a bit of a decline.
Bucking the trend, German design mavericks Loewe have introduced the Soundport Compact, a beautiful aluminium Bluetooth speaker with a rather nicely hidden little docking station in the top. It doesn’t protrude from the unit or cause any strain to the eyes, it remains hidden until required. So, why have they released this product almost 5 years after the demise of the dock? It may seem a bit of a bold move, it’s not exactly a bad thing.
The Soundport is a 2.1 80W Bluetooth speaker with NFC (near field communication), that is built like a house and sounds fantastic. Now, those of you who do your homework will be aware that Bluetooth, while handy, does have its flaws. Firstly there is an immediate drop in quality, and no amount of money or high resolution audio playback device will prevent that. It’s not a huge drop by any means, but it is a dip in quality none the less.
Bluetooth’s range is also quite limited. Ideally the speaker and the device must be in the same room to ensure a solid connection with no drop outs; not always ideal if you’re bouncing between rooms. This is why the likes of Apple Airplay or multiroom systems that establish connections though your internet are so popular. Not to mention the added battery drain caused by streaming. While device batteries have gotten better over time, this can still cause some headaches if you’re not careful.
Many of these issues listed become irrelevant with the introduction of a dock. A dock will keep your device charged, offer a lossless audio playback as it’s a physical connection and a digital one at that, eliminating drop outs.
For the times you do want to stream without using the docking feature, it’s worth noting that the built-in Bluetooth connection is still a very viable option, and I had no problems connecting my device, with the unit providing a rock-solid performance. For those who aren’t tethered to their phones, and just want to come home, plop their phone into a dock and press play, the Loewe Soundport could be perfect for you. With three class D Amplifiers inside it offers a HUGE sound for the size of it. It’s a very impressive Speaker that puts a smile on my face.
If your searching for a dock then look no further. Pop in to your nearest Richer Sounds and arrange a demo to hear this unique speaker in action.
Author: Garrett, Plymouth store