Dual docks for multiple Apple devices are not uncommon. However, most are for two iPhones or iPhone and iPod Touch. Add in the ability to dock an iPhone with an iPad, in either landscape or portrait mode, and the choices are few and far between. Even rarer is the ability to charge additional devices. Enter the iSound Power View Pro. The charging and viewing dock can be used to dock up to four devices including the iPad, iPhone 3G/3GS, iPhone 4 and iPod Nano and all other 30-pin connector devices. It’s neutral, low profile makes it ideal for a nightstand or countertop, with some minor issues.
Read on for my full review.
The Build and Included Accessories
The iSound Power View Pro is a charging and viewing station made of matte aluminum and glossy hard plastic. The aesthetic matches the Apple products perfectly. It comes with two charging and viewing stands, one for the iPad and another for other devices. Four interchangeable dock adapters are included for the smaller dock (for the 5th gen iPod Nano, iPod Touch 3G, iPhone 3G/3Gs and iPhone 4). Each of the docks are stamped with the model name for which they have been molded (a nice touch Apple could use for their universal dock and their myriad of dock adapters). The dock weighs three pounds, including the hefty AC adapter (110/220 V). It has two USB ports located in the back right corner. The USB ports charge any Apple device with the 30-pin connector, and outputs enough power for iPads, so one could actually charge three iPads and a fourth device in the smaller standing dock. The unit has three light indicators. A red LED on the front of dock to indicate it has power and two LED indicators for power and charging status. The docks themselves are represented by two blue LEDs which pulse when charging units and are steady once charging is complete.
The glossy surface of the dock is susceptible to scratches and scuffs. After only a few insertions of the iPad, the hinged door of the horizontal viewing stand shows signs of use where the bare back of the iPad brushed the door. The iPad itself was unmarred.
The docks are sturdy and swapping out the dock adapters is easy. The angled lip extending over the USB slots make insertion of a charging cable a bit awkward. However, the USB ports are so useful it isn’t much of an issue. The ports make it possible to charge the iPad even when inserted in the horizontal dock. I also hooked up an AV component cable and having the USB port for the power supply eliminated having to take up a valuable wall outlet for charging. Using the dock on a countertop near a TV resulted in an excellent AV system, as the dock does not have built-in speakers.
The only drawback to the configuration is the adapter. To provide the necessary power, the adapter is bulky and contributes to some countertop clutter.
On a nightstand, cord management is simplified, resulting in a sleeker footprint. With the iPad’s bright display, it makes for an attractive clock/weather/news station. The ability to view video in landscape mode, and charge the iPad, is a welcome feature. However, the LED status indicators are rather bright. An additional nightlight in the room would be unnecessary. If one prefers to sleep in complete darkness, they would need to be covered. I slid my iPhone out of its case for charging and placed the case over the lights for an easy fix.
As previously mentioned, I could find no dual docks that offer all the features of the iSound Power View Pro. The XtremeMac InCharge Duo ($60 USD) will dock an iPad (profile only) and iPhone, but does not have additional USB ports. The Griffin PowerDock Dual ($60 USD) has built-in speakers, but again, no additonal ports. It does not allow for landscape positioning. The iSound Power View Pro offers a solid build and unique features for the justifiable, though hefty MSRP of $79.99 USD. It is even a better value on Amazon, where it is currently offered for $54.73 USD with free shipping.
The iSound Viewer Pro is a quality dock and charging station with unique features. The USB ports and lanscape viewing capabilities enhance the dock’s versatility as not only a charging and viewing station, but AV accessory. The style, design and minimal footprint for its functions blend well with the Apple aesthetic. The included dock adapters offer easy use for a variety of devices. The LED indicators are clearly visible, perhaps too visible if one is sleeping right next to them. The large adapter and subsequent cord managment issues are cumbersome, yet easy to overlook with the unheard of capability of charging four devices simultaneously, especially when used on a nightstand or desk. It may be a little bulky for travel, but it will be hard to leave this extremely useful dock behind. (For that purpose, watch for my review of the iSound Power Max, coming soon).
This product was provided by iSound as a review sample.