At Macworld, the iMainGo booth had a steady flow of people in awe at what they were witnessing, portable iPod speakers that pumped out major dosages of great sound. By saying portable, the implication is not that these can be crammed into your backpack. The iMainGo unit can be held in your hand just fine. With simple access to your iPod’s controls through the device, its high output stereo speakers, and its 30 hour battery life. The iMainGo is one iPod accessory that separates itself from the competition through natural design and high quality well worth the $69.95 price tag.
From a purely aesthetic standpoint, the iMainGo unit looks very nice. From the front, the two stereo speakers are protected by a plastic caging, and the two holes for the subs foreshadow the sound that is to come. On the backside, a clear window to access you iPod through is the main feature. The entire unit is cased by a nice fabric rather than your average hard black plastic that scratches to no end. As you unzip the zipper and open the unit, it separates into two halves: one to house your iPod, and another that protects the amplifier and speakers. It comes with difference sized adapters to fit whatever version or generation iPod you happen to have, no one is left out. Everything in the iMainGo is made to withstand heavy impact, so don’t worry if you are the clumsy one, your iPod won’t feel a thing.
Here is an area where the iMainGo starts to really outstrip its competition. It has a 30 hour battery life! That’s more than double what your iPod can do. It takes 4 AAAs, so getting another set of rechargeable batteries is highly recommended. Another cool feature is its ability to be used as a wake-up alarm. There are three choices: off, music, and alarm. The alarm allows you to set up a specific time on your iPod, and have the iMainGo blast you out of bed. Also, as mentioned before, you can completely control your iPod without opening the iMainGo. The plastic cover allows your fingers touch to go through.
The motto that Portable Sound Labs has attached to the iMainGo is “Small system. HUGE SOUND!” From its looks, it’s going to be pretty hard to live up to this motto with these two tiny speakers. After inserting the iPod and plugging the iMainGo into the iPod’s headphone jack (yes, it works with anything that has a headphone jack!), it’s time to see if this baby can really scream or if it will just wind up distorting my precious music as nearly every other portable audio product does. Song of choice? Outkast’s Ghettomusick. Why? It’s a great song with highs and definite lows. At 25%, volume is good if you are in a small room by yourself, no distortion yet. 50% turns out to be a good level if you were outside without too much background noise. 75%, basses really come out now, you better not try this level at the office. 90%, still solid. 100%, full volume (remember, at this volume with earbuds, you are now degrading your hearing), quality starts to suffer because of the bass that the song requires. If kept at around 90-95%, sound is clear and LOUD!
So, does the iMainGo portable audio player deliver on its promise? 90-95% of it. Its design is solid, nothing too complicated, and you can fully access your iPod through the window. Sound is great until you hit that full volume point. Is the iMainGo for you? If you listen to your iPod at school or some other place where you have some downtime and other people won’t mind listening to your personal preference of music, then yes. Actually, the answer is yes unless you spend all day around other people who hate music and don’t want to be bothered by anyone or anything.
- Battery Life: up to 30 hours
- Maximum Speaker Output: 2.5w x 2
- Speakers: high output stereo
- Amplifier: state-of-the-art digital
- Bass: tuned porting
- Plug: 3.5 mm gold-tipped stereo
- Power Supply: 4 AAA batteries
- Weight: 9 ounces (255 grams)
- Size: 5.7″ x 3.8″ x 2.4″
- (145 mm x 96 mm x 61 mm)
— Nik Gomez