There is a huge variety of tech and gadgets stuff under the children-oriented brands — from tons of Hello Kitty merchandise to even Disney’s Vinnie the Pooh flash drives but Barbie managed to stay quite in old-fashion. but now is something completely different. Pinkaholics and girls cheer up — there is now pink iPod doc / FM radio / alarm clock in the pinkish fuchsia color imaginable.
This is madness. THIS IS BARBIE.
Belkin has introduced a new and really cool line of in desk hubs specially for that strange round holes in the desks. The trio of products includes two USB hubs and an iPod Dock. The first USB hub is a four port called the Front-Access In-Desk USB Hub and comes with a power adapter. The second USB hub is called the In-Desk USB Hub and uses the same three inch design as the other USB hub but the ports are flat rather for easy reach. The final hole product from Belkin is the In-Desk dock for iPod which is an iPod dock.
A new word in kitchen entertainment — Philips DCD778 Docking Entertainment System. This iPod compatible, under-cabinet multimedia player has an 8.5-inch wide screen LCD display and can play audio and video from an iPod, DVD, (S) VCD, MP3-CD, CD (RW) and Picture CD. The system also supports a built-in ATSC/NTSC TV tuner, digital AM/FM tuner, two 2-inch speakers, cooking timer and clock, and wireless remote. Compatible with the fourth- and fifth-generation iPods, the iPod mini, and iPod nano, the media player is ready for shipping next week
Pricey at $400, the Philips DCD778 Docking Entertainment System will add that geeky touch to your kitchen.
The iPod is a wonderful product hindered by one basic flaw - analog outputs. The digital format of its audio files are converted within the iPod, which negates any attempt to create true-to-CD audio. This means that no matter how much money an audiophile spends on iPod docking stations that boast great sound, the quality will not come close to a CD played on a high-end system.
A company called MSB Technology is attempting to tap into this lucrative and exclusive demographic with its iLink Docking System for the iPod. On its own the iLink isn’t particularly special, but when it’s coupled with an MSB-upgraded iPod it can output true digital audio, something the analog-only iPod has never been capable of doing. You can either opt to send your own 5.5G iPod to MSB — where they’ll upgrade it for you for $199 and provide their own warranty — or you can go for the full $1995 iLink system — which includes an iPod upgrade, and an iLink dock that taps into a digital audio enabled iPod’s dock connector. Although we don’t claim to be audiophiles ourselves, we see a couple of potential problems here, not least the issue of the iPod being an inherently flawed device to market to audiophiles (compressed music = bad). The other little niggle is the two grand price tag, which isn’t too far removed from the asking prices of the high-end CD players it’s designed to replace.