By Branko Miletic
- DAB+/FM clock radio
- Dock for iPhone & iPod
- Large LCD display
TEAC has been around for some time now. I remember using their products in the 1990s. The company that entered the world in 1953 as the Tokyo Electro Acoustic Company has the runs on the board and technical expertise to make great products. In the 1980s they were famous for their high-quality reel-to-reel tape decks. In 2012, they have become known for their low-end consumer tech gear.
The company recently released a range of iPod/iPhone docks – or iDocks as I call them – for just about every room/occasion and person. The one that I reviewed was the CRX45iP, which features DAB+, FM radio, dual alarm functions, LCD display and the usual array of buttons, functions and bits and bobs that for the most part, all worked rather well. It charges your device which is great for people whose phone battery constantly runs low. Also, unlike some similar units on the market, it has a power cord that is a decent enough length, meaning you won’t need an extension cord to plug it in.
However there were a couple of things that really annoyed me.
First was the setting of the alarm function, which was not that easy to work. If you happen to have an iPod/iPhone with the alarm set at the exact same time, all you get is the LCD flashing instead of noise during your set alarm time, so you need to be sure to switch your device alarm off if you intend to use the CRX45iP as your primary wake-up device. This was annoying as I like to wake up to my own playlist, which this device is designed to do, and not a strobe light.
However, the biggest complaint I have is with the sound. Now I know this is a small device that is destined for the likes of Big W and what some tech companies like to call the ‘budget end’ or ‘price conscious’ of the market,, but one would think the sound output could have been a bit better. Not so. In fact it was woeful.
Tinny and hollow would be a good description. Also when it comes to the DAB+ radio, if I were TEAC, I would put a disclaimer about geography into their operating instructions. I am sure the digital audio radio station pick up is great in many parts of the world. The part of the world where I live gave me the grand choice of 1 digital radio station! And don’t even get me started on the boring monochromatic LCD display.
Yes the TEAC CRX45iP alarm and iDevice dock worked - but nowhere near as well as it could or for that matter, should,
Pros: easy to use, large LCD display, song playlist alarm setting, low price
Cons: lousy sound, internal and device alarm clash, monochromatic display
2.5 Shacks Out Of 5