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I have to admit that my husband and I were rather late on the Apple scene and only purchased our first iPod last year with our iPad being purchased for my husbands Birthday last month. Despite this, we have been very pleased with both purchases, and have enjoyed our iPod Classic for the variety of music we have downloaded onto it, including various ancient CDs which were sat gathering dust on our bookshelves until recently. One thing that was missing from our iPod experience was a good docking station through which to collectively enjoy our music. As a result I went on a hunt earlier this year for a reputable docking station with which to sit our iPod.
After doing my fair share of research, I eventually settled on this Street Party 4 potable speaker dock. At the time it was priced at a rather reasonable £40 and it had the sort of looks and size that I was after. After receiving my product a couple of days from ordering, I was pleased with the overall style of this speaker and was keen to see how good it was.
This speaker dock is designed to house a variety of Apple products and amplify the sounds being produced through its speaker body. In terms of looks, this speaker dock is black in colour and has a rectangular shape with an extended silver slot at the bottom with which to sit my iPod. On the front of this dock is the Gear4 brand name, which I hadn't heard of up until I purchased this particular speaker. Subsequent research reveals that Gear4 manufacture a range of speaker systems which vary in style and usage. In terms of size, this speaker dock is perfect for my needs. I had originally wanted to house my iPod in the kitchen in order that my music could be heard throughout our flat, and this speaker sits perfectly in the designated recess with its body measurements being 24cm long x 14cm high x 3cm deep.
This particular speaker dock is designed to enable the user to listen to their media device both in a stationary and portable setting. As a consequence I use an electric cable to plug my docking station into the mains but on the occasion that I might want to take it outside there is an opening through which to slot four AA batteries. The lead which accompanies this speaker is quite long and sufficient in length to position mine on the kitchen work surface with the lead extending to the nearest power point behind it.
~Set Up and Use~
It is always exciting to receive a new electrical item and this particular product was no different. Once received I spared no time in getting the speaker out of its box housing to examine it more closely. Overall impressions were good, this product is not too heavy nor too bulky and its shiny black body matches the shiny black of my kitchen work surfaces where it was to sit. I was also pleased that this speaker does come with a thin remote with which to change the tune or adjust the volume across the room.
My initial thought was to plug this speaker in so that I could get started. As the power cable is quite long I did take advantage of a cable tie to wrap up the majority of the lead and hide it out of sight behind the speaker before plugging it in to the mains. Once the speaker was plugged in and had been turned on, a light glowed blue above the area where my iPod sat and I found this helpful as a quick indicator as to whether the speaker was on. Sitting my iPod into this speaker was very easy to do and it now sits sturdily inside the speaker during and after use which is great in my opinion.
With my iPod sat in the speaker I turned it on manually although this can also be done using the remote control. It was then simply a case of selecting the music I wanted to play, either through the scroll function at the front of my iPod or with the remote.
~My Experience and Opinion~
I have been very pleased with this speaker dock both for its functionality and performance. It is helpful having a speaker which is a permanent feature in our kitchen and allows us to jointly listen to whichever music we feel like listening to rather than using our head phones and listening individually to our iPod. In addition the size and remote control for this speaker make it perfect for our home and easy to use and control. The set up for this particular speaker was incredibly easy to do and even I was able to get it going with minimal effort, which was quite a feat considering I am not a huge fan of all things technical.
The sound quality for this speaker is good and it seems to play deep base particularly well without any muffling or blurring noises. I have found the volume settings on this speaker to be more than adequate for our needs with a setting half way between half and maximum sound being quite sufficient to hear our music around the flat at quite a good distance away. I have yet to test this speaker at full volume, for fear of disturbing our neighbour but have found the middle setting more than adequate for most of our needs.
Another positive with this speaker is the fact that it charges our iPod when it is not in use. This is very helpful when the iPod is playing but even more so when it is sat silently on the side as it ensures that the iPod is always powered up when we want to take it out on the go.
All in all I thoroughly enjoy using this speaker and it is still working as well today as it was when I purchased it. Perhaps my only slight criticism is aimed at the design of the speakers which are covered in a metallic grill which does have a tendency to pick up dust and at the rather small amount of features which this speaker does lack when compared to other products.
~Price and Availability~
As I purchased my speaker a few months ago now it was interesting to check the prices online to find out how much this speaker currently costs. Amazon are stocking it for £35.90 which is excellent value in my opinion for a product that not only looks great but performs well.
As a result of the above this speaker scores an excellent five stars from me and it does come recommended.
I hope this review has been of some help and thanks for reading! x
I have very mixed reviews about the Gear 4 Street Party speakers, I bought them for my partner and I as we are frequent travellers and like to have music in our hotel room/hostel, for this reason the speakers are brilliant, they do not take up much room in your luggage.
The sound from the speaker are great which to me was a surprise. Because the speakers are so small I didn't expect the sound to be as good as it was. It was fantastic for the price.
The downside about this speaker is that the small plastic fold out for the iPod is rather weak and flimsy, I have had no problems with it yet but I feel this will become a problem in future. Also I feel this speaker is better for the smaller model of iPod my partner and I both have the iPod classic which as you all know is quite a bulky wee number, so at times if I move the speaker with the iPod attached it can fall out due to the lack of support from the docking station.
I do not regret buying this item but I would only use this for travelling.
This was bought for me as a gift and I was a bit skeptical at first as the previous ipod dock I had owned wasn't very good at all. The first time I used this one I was very impressed and my worries were put aside. The sound quality is really good even at a high volume - and the player really does go very loud. The dock comes with a mains adaptor for when indoors and takes 4 x AA batteries when on the move. I recently used this dock when on a week-long camping trip where it was used every night and one set of batteries lasted the whole time and beyond. The front of the player features a simple dock for apple iPods, but my favourite feature is the auxiliary input at the back. This means that you can easily connect any mp3 player or mobile phone using a quarter inch jack lead and you are not restricted to only using apple iPods. The dock is all black and smart to look at, looks great in my modern looking house. The size of it means it can easily be moved from room to room and taken away wherever I go. Overall, highly recommended if you are looking to use the dock while away from mains supply.
I bought the Gear4 Street Party 4 speaker unit a few months ago to use on holiday and for weekends
away camping.The Street Party 4 is a speaker unit and docking station for the Ipod or Iphone but
it has a 3.5mm input socket at the rear of the unit which allows it to be used as speakers for any
MP3 player or smartphone although this requires the use of a 3.5mm jack to jack stereo cable. Unfortunately the extra cable isn't included but they are available in most electrical stores for
The Street Party 4 is made of glossy black plastic on the back with black plastic grill over the front of
the unit although this looks great when you buy it every finger print shows on it and it scratches really easily after 1 weeks holiday ours looked like it had been kicked around the apartment floor a few
times when in reality it had been carefully packed and sat on a table the whole week!
The only controls on the unit are an on/off switch and a volume rocker so there's no setting up
required just plug in and play. There's a small remote control unit included which you can use for
adjusting the volume or skipping tracks etc but it only works if you are using the unit with an Ipod.
There's a blue light behind the speaker grill which lets you know when the unit is switched on and
the volume automatically resets to zero when switched off so you don't get hit with full blast music
from the night before when you switch it on the next morning.
The unit weighs 580gm and measures 141 x 241 x 33mm and has a plastic stand and Ipod dock
which fold back flush into the main unit when not in use. This makes it perfect for travelling as there
are no random bits sticking out ready to get snapped off when the airport baggage chuckers are
having a bad day and it takes up as much space as a T shirt in your case.
The sound quality is better than I honestly expected and thankfully avoids the tinny grating sound
of many portable speakers which sound like you've amplified your smartphone in a metal dustbin.
On this there's a decent range across all levels, nothing sounds muffled or tinny and the bass is
clear and defined without sounding too boomy or overpowering everything else. While it's never
going to rival a good home or car stereo system it sounds good for a reasonably cheap portable
There's no mention of the power output anywhere on the box but i'd guess around 2x2.5 watts
judging by other speaker units I've owned. It's loud enough for most rooms although the Street
Party name is definitely stretching the boundaries of reality so don't expect this to live up to it's
name or to do what it says on the tin unless you live in a tiny enclosed lane and don't like loud music.
The unit can run on mains power or 4 x AA batteries and comes with a mains power supply unit and
a handy 2 pin travel adapter for using abroad. The unit will also charge an Ipod or Iphone but only
when it's running on mains power and sadly for those of us who refuse to join the Apple race it
can't charge a normal MP3 player. When we've used this for camping I've found we get around
6-7 hours use when using this on battery power with a new set of rechargeable batteries although
this will obviously vary depending on the batteries you use.
Overall this is a decent sounding speaker unit for the price and ideal for using at home or taking on
holiday. I paid £24 for the Street Party 4 and although the list price is £49.99 I've seen it in Sainsbury
and HMV for £25 so as always it's worth shopping around.
Update!! After owning this for just under 4 months the Street Party4 has decided it no longer wants
to work on batteries which makes it pretty useless for the purpose I originally bought it for although
it still works on mains power it's not a lot of use for camping trips etc that I really wanted it for.
I got this docking station in a sale at HMV for £15, and I found out within weeks why it was discounted from its usual price of £30.
I thought it was very handy at first. I could move it around the house, the sound quality was very good. It was impressively loud for a smallish speaker, and the sound was very clear.
The front part, where you put your iPod, stuck out. It came with plastic attachments so that not too much pressure was put on the plug, which would break it. It came with different sized attachments, for all the different kinds of iPod. Unfortunately, there wasn't one for the iPhone.
After a few days, the plug started to become loose and I had to put a folded up bit of paper to hold in in place so the docking station would recognise it.
After a few weeks, the plug snapped into my iPhone, almost getting trapped inside and breaking my iPhone, and the docking station was useless.
In the future, I'd suggest paying for a more expensive speaker as you definitely get what you pay for with docking stations.
These speakers were given to me by my boyfriend when my other speakers got ruined, don't ask! He had an old iPod touch (the one without the camera on the front) and apparently it didn't play out loud. However on my new iPod touch, it does work so I now have it!
Anyway these speakers are really cute! I love the way the little flap folds up and down where you plug the iPod on, which makes the speakers really sleek and thin and compact. I often take these speakers with me on holiday because they are easy to flat pack.
As well as this the quality of the sound is actually really good! I'm always sceptical about speakers playing well in case the sound is tinny but these speakers sound really good playing loudly. It also has a place to plug in an aux in the back to play through it that way also!
Like I said, these speakers are really cute, compact and really good quality, they also charge up your iPod while its on which is always handy! I often use it just for charging so I don't have to constantly plug it into my laptop.
I don't really have anything negative to say about these speakers, they're loud, not tinny, easy to compact and charges your iPod! Not a bad word I can say!