Product Type: Gear4 in PC Speakers
Newest Review: ... and good enough to create a good noise at all levels of volume. I bought the Gear4 House Party 4. From what I understand, Gear4 have be... more
Really good iPod player/dock!
Gear4 HouseParty 4
Member Name: mgrehan123
Gear4 HouseParty 4
Advantages: Easy to use/install, good value, great sound quality.
Disadvantages: Not many - a little difficult to control remotely.
As I had received an iPod Nano for my birthday this year (see my iPod Nano review on my profile page), I also received this gear4 Houseparty 4 dock/player from my brother as a gift. We usually struggle each year to buy each other presents for our respective birthdays (as we are men LOL!) but this was an easy gift for him as I had expressed a desire for both a dock and a iPod player for my flat that could work like a hi-fi. This combines both so it had an instant thumbs up from me before I even opened the packaging!!
So now to the actual review of the product. On receiving the gift, I immediately opened up the packaging and all the stuff, as expected, was all there - the product itself, all the product information, the iPod connector pieces for all the different types of iPod (Nano, Classic, iPhone etc), the remote control and all of the electrical leads for plugging it in. There is also a space in the back of the machine for batteries if that was the way you wanted to power it (it does, however, use those massive batteries so I can't imagine it being very cost effective to use them!)
It was fairly easy to install and once you have your iPod the way you like it with all your music on it, you just simply 'dock it' into your Houseparty 4 and away you go! You can control the iPod from its screen or by remote control. One minor drawback is that because you are so far away from the screen, it is very hard to control what music you want remotely unless you are choosing a pre-made playlist as you can't possibly see what your flicking through from the distance that you would be using a remote control from. However, the trick here would be to select some Houseparty 4 playlists and control them remotely......so much easier!!
The sound quality really is excellent. My brother had stated that he had gone into the stores to sample all the different players and that this was streets ahead of the competition. Once he had sampled this player, he said he went straight ahead and purchased it. You can also adjust the volume remotely using your handheld control which is a nice touch....if the phone rings or something in your flat it means you don't have to run over to the dock and manually turn it off. Bonus. The sound quality doesn't get compromised when you turn it up quite high, as is the case with some of the poorer quality machines.
Gear4 seem to a fairly reputable brand for iPod accessories. They have a wide range of stuff (I also have a gear4 leather Nano cover-case) and I would recommend their stuff to anyone. The quality of this piece is undeniable, and I think they have a really good niche in the market as most people look for an alternative to Apple for iPod and iPhone accessories due to their ridiculous prices (£34.99 for a pair of standard iPod earphones is pretty steep, for example) I am not sure of the price of this piece of equipment as it was a gift but I would say it retails in at well under £100. If this was an official Apple product it would £150ish. However, there would be no difference in quality in my opinion. This is a huge plus for gear4.
Overall, I would highly recommend this product. The only thing I could not give high marks for would be reliability as I have only owned the product for 4 months. Hopefully there will be no problems there in the future!!
Summary: Excellent purchase.
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