The Best Portable Speaker Systems for Your iPod

Since the introduction of the iPod, the electronics market has been flooded by a tidal wave of accessories and add-ons, capitalizing on the uniquely simplistic style, the clever technology, and the distinctive grace of the nifty little music player.

The current market for iPod speakers is no exception. At last count, there were nearly 100 different brands and styles of speakers for your iPod, some small enough to fit snugly in the palm of your hand, and others simulating the boom boxes of old, successfully capturing the retro look and instilling it with an updated flair.

With such a variety of choices, it can be difficult choosing the best. You have to base your decision on a number of criteria, such as how important is the quality and volume of sound, how stylish must the speakers be, how portable are the speakers, and of course, how much?

Because there is such an overwhelming variety of iPod speakers to choose from, for the purposes of this article, we will focus on speakers whose main attribute is portability, since it is likely that the portable speakers are in fact those most craved by iPod users. For use in parties, the workplace, on vacations, and many other applications, portable speakers for your iPod make listening to your music and playlists outloud in high-quality sound in any locale a simple procedure.

The Logitech mm50 Portable iPod Speakers produce a crisp, clear sound with a powerful bass, transforming your iPod into a device capable of delivering superior aural performance. Providing support for all iPods with a dock connector, the Logitech mm50 can be operated with an AC adapter, or with rechargeable Li-ion batteries. The batteries can keep your speakers functioning for approximately 10 hours. The AC adapter helps to keep the iPod charged while in use.

The Logitech mm50 Portable iPod Speakers also come equipped with a palm-sized remote control, secondary input for iPods without a dock connector, and a carrying case for easy travel. While the speakers are slightly larger than other available options, the Logitech mm50 speakers claim to deliver the best in sound quality, with an optimal 3D surround feature that rivals other speaker systems for your iPod.

The Altec Lansing inMotion iM7 Portable Audio System is a speaker system designed for use with 3rd and 4th generation iPod photos, and iPod minis. High-performance stereo sound is what Altec Lansing delivers, with digital amplification and powerful bass. Running also on an AC adapter that simultaneously charges your iPod, or 8 D batteries, the Altec Lansing inMotion iM7 Portable Audio System also features an adjustable cradle to fit iPods snugly, as well as a remote and auxiliary jack for connecting other iPods and other devices.

A universal power adapter is also included for overseas travel, so that the Altec Lansing inMotion iM7 Portable Audio System can be utilized anywhere. The stylish design and compact size is perfectly suited for portability and noticeability, and is an adequate competitor for the Logitech mm50 Portable iPod Speakers.

Slightly smaller, less stylish, and significantly less costly, you might want to consider the Altec Lansing inMotion im3C Portable Audio System. This smaller portable speaker system lacks a subwoofer but still manages to produce clearly defined bass and crisp, refined sound. A secondary input allows the connection of older iPods or other devices, and the unit also includes an adapter for the iPod mini.

The Altec Lansing inMotion im3C Portable Audio System comes equipped with a built-in dock for iPods with a dock connector, enabling recharging of iPods, and utilizes four AA batteries for approximately 24 hours of continuous music. The sleek unit also includes a remote control and folds to the size of a paperback book. Packed in the included traveling case, this is the quintessential portable speaker system.

The JBL OnTour Speakers are imaginatively designed for both style and portability. A sliding cover protects the speaker system when not in use, and otherwise acts as a convenient stand when playing the speaker system. Using a mini-jack connection, the speaker system can be used with iPods and many other devices. Easy touchpad controls set the volume, and the speaker system delivers a surprisingly refined, powerful sound using digital amplifier technology.

The JBL OnTour Speakers can be run either on AC adapter or four AAA batteries for approximately 24 hours of playing time. A handy alert system lets you know when the batteries are running low.

For the ultimate sound quality experience, the expensive but high-quality Bose SoundDock System is ideal. For use with iPods and iPod minis, this no-nonsense speaker system charges your iPod as it plays and features a remote control. The speaker system fills the room with vibrant, crystal-clear audio, and the sophisticated design enhances its appeal.

Designed for the music lover and audiophile in mind, the Bose SoundDock System is larger than other options but still portable, though it does not have the portable ease that smaller options possess. Easily replacing any stereo system, the Bose SoundDock System works with iPods that possess a dock connector.

The speaker systems in this list are just a small fraction of the best available. All the companies listed here have additional models that may suit you or your iPod better. Prices can vary greatly between models, and ultimately, you must ask yourself those questions about what you expect from your speaker system before making an easy decision.

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