Altec Lansing T612
Rich, lively sound quality and iPhone support
- Lively sound, rich and detailed mid-range, great treble, iPhone compatible
- Sound too lively for some, bass hollow, sound can be a little disconnected, iPhone implementation needs some work
Another solid MP3 dock from Altec Lansing, the T612 produces extremely energetic audio and works in conjunction with the iPhone. However, users should note that iPhone connectivity could use some work.
Price$ 399.00 (AUD)
Although the market has been flooded with iPod and MP3 player docks that allow you to share your music with those around you, they don't typically work in conjunction with your mobile phone. However, if you own an iPhone, that's exactly what the Altech Lansing T612 does. It offers good quality sound (although it is extremely lively) and allows you to use your dock as a hands-free kit with your iPhone. You should note, however, that the implementation is not as good as it could be.
Our biggest complaint is that you can't use the remote control to answer or reject the call. So while you can use the system as a speaker and microphone, you need to walk right up to the device to engage this functionality. We also felt that call quality was lacking on both ends. There was a significant delay on the caller's side and the audio was high pitched and tinny. On the T612's end there was little definition to the sound and you can't use the built-in volume control to increase the volume, which is quite low by default. All in all we can see little real use for this functionality in its current state.
Fortunately, even just as a regular iPod dock the T612 performs well. It produces audio that should impress the majority of users. It does have a slightly processed, digital sound that makes it unsuitable for audiophiles, but many users will love the fun audio style of this system.
Fun is definitely the key word here. All of the different ranges are exaggerated a fair amount, which makes most tunes sound energetic and bombastic. This is most notable in the mid-range, which is extremely lively. It was a little gritty and harsh at times with some slight distortion, but there was plenty of detail and we could hear all the elements of our tunes that are lost on lesser systems.
It was treble notes that turned out to be the T612's forte. They were rich and sweet with brilliant extension yet they didn't become harsh or fatiguing. They were a little overshadowed by the mid-range and the powerful bass at times, but this wasn't too problematic.
Bass was powerful, with a deep rumble that extended very low. However, we weren't big fans of the overall bass quality. Low-register notes sounded hollow and slightly empty. They also lingered for a very long time thanks to the system's slow reproduction; this wasn't suitable for all genres of music.
Separation was extremely good on the whole; in fact, at times it was a little too good. Certain elements of the music sounded almost too distant, which ruined the cohesiveness of the sound at times. Overall we'd recommend the T612 for fun, energetic music like rock and hip hop. Styles that require more detail and are hurt by strong, hollow bass such as Jazz will probably not work as well.
The system's design is fairly standard, with two speakers on either side surrounding a dock in the middle. The dock is compatible with most new iPods and offers an insert for the iPhone. There are a series of controls along the top including treble and bass adjustment and an auxiliary port is available on the rear to connect other MP3 players.
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