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Discover New Music

  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer - Once More, with Feeling

    • 10 out of 10
    • Various Artists
    • Most musical episodes of TV shows frankly stink. They are usually little more than ill-conceived vehicles intended to let the stars show off what musical talent they have. Once More, With Feeling,

  • Modern Lovers

    • 10 out of 10
    • Modern Lovers
    • This timeless masterpiece is little known, but it has inspired almost as many bands as The Modern Lovers' own inspiration -- and only slightly better known -- The Velvet Underground & Nico.

  • So Jealous

    • 8 out of 10
    • Tegan and Sara
    • So Jealous is the third album from these sisters, and easily the one to single out for an introduction to their music. Some people may not get on board with their vocal styles, which are slightly

  • Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not

    • 8 out of 10
    • Arctic Monkeys
    • Get on your dancing shoes
      You sexy little swine


  • Mezzanine

    • 6 out of 10
    • Massive Attack
    • "Black Milk" knocks me off my feet in this collection of moody and eclectic songs. Massive Attack uses samples and keyboards in a very unique way, but not all the songs pack the same punch.

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In-Depth Review

iCruiser 430

At first glance, Ignitek's iCruiser 430 iPod speaker system looks identical to the company's iCarrier Hi-Fi (4 stars, $249) with its legs cut off. While outer dimensions and appearance are extremely similar between the iCruiser and the top of the iCarrier, the iCruiser is not merely a subwooferless iCarrier. In fact, it sports its own smaller bass driver in the rear and different mid-range speakers and tweeters to balance the audio appropriately.

iCruiser 430
Ignitek iCruiser 430

The iCruiser can accomodate any iPod, either through the dock connector or auxiliary line-in, for 1G and 2G iPods and iPod shuffles. The iCruiser sports mini-USB and FireWire ports on the rear, but these are strictly for connecting the iCruiser to your computer as a sort of glorified dock (you can't charge a 1G or 2G iPod from that port). Like the iCarrier, the iCruiser's axuiliary input is flawed in that there's no way to switch between dock connector iPod mode and line-in mode, so as long as you have a cable plugged into the line-in port, you won't be able to listen to your dock connected iPod.


Fortunately, also like the iCarrier, the performance of the iCruiser makes up for this shortcoming. After all, you're most likely going to be using the iCruiser only to listen to your iPod, so how it sounds is more important than other perks. Thanks to the three-inch bass driver in the rear, the iCruiser is capable of producing richer sound than similarly priced speakers that skimp on the low-end. Combined with the four mid-range speakers and two tweeters up front, the iCruiser is one of the loudest, clearest, and best sounding speaker systems you can buy for your iPod for under $100.

Compared to the $300 SoundDock from Bose, the iCruiser is able to respectively hold its own; not that it exceeds the "room-filling" capabilties of the SoundDock (the iCruiser's speakers are much more focused), or the SoundDock's range and balance, but matched up one against the other, no one would imagine that the iCruiser costs even one-half of the Bose, let alone one-third. The iCruiser also includes a remote control with the same basic functionality as Bose, although it's a good deal larger in size.

TuneBase FM
iCruiser vs. SoundDock

The Bottom Line

If the iCruiser 430 was a baseball player, it would bat .300 with 20 home runs and 100 RBI in a season, which is to say that while it doesn't stand-out in any one particular department, it is an extremely well-rounded unit that delivers solid performance for a very reasonable price tag. If your iPod speaker budget stands at a single Benjamin, you should certainly consider the iCruiser.

Just The Facts

iCarrier 430 from Ignitek

MSRP US$119.99
Street Price: US$99.99 - From

Pros:good, balanced sound; dedicated bass driver; solid value

Cons:flawed line-in implementation

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