There are a variety of ways to play your iPod's music over your home-stereo speakers, but to date, they've all involved annoying cables or transmitter add-ons that crowd the FM radio band. That's where the Logitech Wireless Music System comes in. The Wireless Music System, along with the Belkin TuneStage, uses Bluetooth wireless transmission to beam music from your iPod to your stereo. The Logitech system consists of two parts -- the receiver, which connects to your home stereo, and the transmitter, which connects to your iPod. You can then control music with either your iPod or the included remote control. The Logitech Wireless Music System costs around £70.
No more messing around with an analogue cable to listen to your iPod on your stereo -- borrowing from the company's earlier Wireless Headphones for iPod, the Wireless Music System uses Bluetooth signals that, according to Logitech, can transmit music as far as ten metres from your iPod to your stereo. Additionally, since the Wireless Music System doesn't use your computer, it avoids the sometimes difficult network configuration associated with traditional digital network media devices. Unlike the TuneStage, the Wireless Music System's transmitter is self-powered and comes with a recharger, so it won't drain your iPod's battery. Want to listen to your iPod in a different room? Logitech will make additional wireless receivers available for purchase so that you can set up multiple listening stations in your home.
While the transmitter's internal power source won't drain your iPod's battery, the fact that it needs independent recharging means yet another AC plug and charging cable cluttering up your space. And as with Belkin's solution, Logitech's wireless implementation has a number of question marks -- it uses Bluetooth wireless transmission, which is largely unproven outside of the market for low-fi mobile phone headsets, and since the transmitter connects to the iPod's analogue output, your music will go through an extra analogue-to-digital conversion.
The Logitech Wireless Music System's main distinguishing feature over the TuneStage is the rechargeable transmitter. But how the Logitech compares with the Belkin on the important issues of battery life and sound quality remains to be seen. Check back soon for a full, hands-on review.
Edited by John P. Falcone
Additional editing by Kate Macefield