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Tablet Docks....

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

OK, so I was told that if I asked about docks, I would probably get a better response, so here we go. I have a Kindle Fire, not the HD one, just the original Fire; I am looking to spend up to $150.00 on a dock for it, and of course, I want it to have great sound and if possible, a port to plug in a generic mp3 player. Any suggestions?

post #2 of 10
Thread Starter 

Or another idea I had was to buy some PC speakers, like the Creative Gigaworks T20 and just plug them into the headphone jack and use them as speakers for my kindle, in which case I wonder what the best sounding PC speakers that are smallish are..

post #3 of 10
The few Android tablets I have heard do not have the best analog output. Does your sound good to you with headphones plugged up to it?
post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 

It sounds good enough. I am still working on training my ears :)

post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 

So, that beign said, what docks sound good?

post #6 of 10
I'm using the pure I-20 and for the price, very happy with it.
post #7 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by tisumner View Post

OK, so I was told that if I asked about docks, I would probably get a better response, so here we go. I have a Kindle Fire, not the HD one, just the original Fire; I am looking to spend up to $150.00 on a dock for it, and of course, I want it to have great sound and if possible, a port to plug in a generic mp3 player. Any suggestions?

 

The problem with Apple's competitors is the wide variety of manufacturers, so even with more popular models like the Galaxy Tab and the Kindle Fire, most likely these two will have the custom-fit gear, but still not as likely to be available as with Apple devices. That said, is portability all that necessary? If not, you can look at getting active speakers, and soem kind of generic dock or other solution to keep the tablet up on the table - the Galaxy has a dock I believe, if the Fire doesn't there's always some other stand out there like the Gorillapod tablet stand. Then again, tablets would tend to be too large to dock into most one-box dock and speaker units, so maybe something like a Razer Ferox battery operated speakers would do great for a portable (from my own listening I liked them better used for background music in a relatively quiet area than for laptop gaming).

 

Speaking of neat fit docks, I have an iPad2 with an easily removable shell case with cover, and I used to just remove it from the case then dock it in the original Apple dock, with the camera connection kit USB adapter hooked up to the dock's 30-pin output - one dock next to my Cantate streams USB digital audio to its USB input, another dock next to my Swan active monitors sends out USB audio to an Ibasso D-Zero, then an analog cable to the speakers. Keywords there are "used to," because I made the mistake of falling for the iOS6.1.3 update because of the info on better battery management (which started to suck thanks to some iOS5 update right before iOS6 went up and screwed up the Maps), and Apple being the insidious empire that it is, it didn't include any info that they will disable USB devices being used with the iPad. So much for my neat set-up, now I'll probably have to consider adding an HRT iStreamer between it and the Cantate...then I'd have to make do with lineout to the speakers, because I'm not buying two of those! (At the very least, I liked the iStreamer sound anyway).

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by MilesDavis2 View Post

I'm using the pure I-20 and for the price, very happy with it.

 

He's using Android, and from the description I think he wants a speaker dock, like the Altec and B&W boomboxes that have an iPod dock instead of a CD transport or cassette player. (Or maybe I misunderstand too and what he wants is a clock radio?)


Edited by ProtegeManiac - 4/8/13 at 8:36pm
post #8 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by ProtegeManiac View Post

Keywords there are "used to," because I made the mistake of falling for the iOS6.1.3 update because of the info on better battery management (which started to suck thanks to some iOS5 update right before iOS6 went up and screwed up the Maps), and Apple being the insidious empire that it is, it didn't include any info that they will disable USB devices being used with the iPad.

That's rude. About as bad as Google not including USB digital audio output support in the Nexus 7. Their supposed flagship 7" tablet, and they can't include that audio feature that has been added to Android? It's not like the analog audio output on the Nexus 7 is any good.

Meanwhile, I think your suggestion of powered speakers is a good one. Some M-Audio AV40s could be a good choice.
post #9 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post


That's rude. About as bad as Google not including USB digital audio output support in the Nexus 7. Their supposed flagship 7" tablet, and they can't include that audio feature that has been added to Android? It's not like the analog audio output on the Nexus 7 is any good.

 

Almost, but Apple's worse. The thing with Google is they just don't see why thy should include it, which is more understandable given they were thinking of all the other things one can do with a tablet. With Apple, because they wanted you to be able to back up your much better than the iPad/iPhone camera and maybe upload it ASAP if the iPad has 4g (or if you find free WiFi while out), someone figured out USB audio works too. Then they got rid of that because my Cantate and D-Zero didn't pay to have "Made for iPad" stamped on their plain boxes. Seriously, Apple?! That won't guarantee I'll buy something they sold a proprietary "Made for iPod" outboard DAC license to; instead it just guaranteed that I'll never, ever buy an iPad again. I'll probably just take good care of this one, then ditch it for a Note 8 as soon as MAD, Sport Rider and Road and Track are all available on Android, even if I have to buy my old issues again (well I hope not...), neat-fitting original manufacturer's dock stand be damned.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post

Meanwhile, I think your suggestion of powered speakers is a good one. Some M-Audio AV40s could be a good choice.

 

Anyways, back on topic...try to expand your options. I dunno what gear other people have tried with those, but I've tried it in a local pro audio store and it sounds too thin but I can hear some bass notes that are all over the place. Sloppy, just not loud. I'd normally suggest Swans, but for some reason nobody has them in stock anymore, even if the dealers still have the product pages on their sites. Ad a little bit to your budget and there's the Emotiva AirMotiv. Haven't tried that one so I can't really vouch for it, but given I heard the AV40 and didn't like it, I'd rather suggest you read up on the AirMotivs at the very least. They might have a nice return policy too so that might mean you can at least try them at home for the cost of shipping (IF you return it, but do check the details at their website).



Also, if you don't need to move them around the house and use it more like a shelf system (even if not literally on a shelf), some affordable speakers have cabinets of reasonable quality and enough sensitivity that they can be run off a 10wpc T-Amp. Like this Dayton T-Amp and speakers. If you're not into super hi-fi signal, here's also a wireless solution (from source to amp) for it with the transmitter in the same kind of chassis as the amp, but that restricts you to keeping the tablet on a table with a wire going into the transmitter. Otherwise you can get some Bluetooth solutions from that site. Some have a combo sender and receiver, but if your tablet has BT, you can try using its own BT sender instead of hooking up the sender into its earphone output. What I like about the latter option is if it's a lounge system, I have the tablet both as a source unit and a remote control. I don't have to walk far from the kitchen or bar to mess with the playlist. I'm using a similar radio transmitter (not BT though) that has a receiver powerful enough to get my HD600 loud enough, as it was meant for headphones, but I use it with my Swan monitors and iPad or Android phone. I even take the transmitter with me when the grill and beer party is at somebody else's house, so by the time the beer's cold and the steaks are done, no one gets up from the table until we're bloated. (At my house though I take the speakers out of the office and into the living room)


Edited by ProtegeManiac - 4/9/13 at 1:42am
post #10 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by ProtegeManiac View Post

Anyways, back on topic...try to expand your options. I dunno what gear other people have tried with those, but I've tried it in a local pro audio store and it sounds too thin but I can hear some bass notes that are all over the place. Sloppy, just not loud. I'd normally suggest Swans, but for some reason nobody has them in stock anymore, even if the dealers still have the product pages on their sites. Ad a little bit to your budget and there's the Emotiva AirMotiv. Haven't tried that one so I can't really vouch for it, but given I heard the AV40 and didn't like it, I'd rather suggest you read up on the AirMotivs at the very least. They might have a nice return policy too so that might mean you can at least try them at home for the cost of shipping (IF you return it, but do check the details at their website)

Also, if you don't need to move them around the house and use it more like a shelf system (even if not literally on a shelf), some affordable speakers have cabinets of reasonable quality and enough sensitivity that they can be run off a 10wpc T-Amp. Like this Dayton T-Amp and speakers. If you're not into super hi-fi signal, here's also a wireless solution (from source to amp) for it with the transmitter in the same kind of chassis as the amp, but that restricts you to keeping the tablet on a table with a wire going into the transmitter. Otherwise you can get some Bluetooth solutions from that site. Some have a combo sender and receiver, but if your tablet has BT, you can try using its own BT sender instead of hooking up the sender into its earphone output. What I like about the latter option is if it's a lounge system, I have the tablet both as a source unit and a remote control. I don't have to walk far from the kitchen or bar to mess with the playlist. I'm using a similar radio transmitter (not BT though) that has a receiver powerful enough to get my HD600 loud enough, as it was meant for headphones, but I use it with my Swan monitors and iPad or Android phone. I even take the transmitter with me when the grill and beer party is at somebody else's house, so by the time the beer's cold and the steaks are done, no one gets up from the table until we're bloated. (At my house though I take the speakers out of the office and into the living room)

Yep. The $150 price point is a difficult one for powered speakers. I agree that the Lepai t-amp and then a set of passive speakers is one of the best solutions, particularly because one could go to the used market for the speakers and get something even better than the Dayton speakers.
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