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Boston Acoustics Duo-i plus

*Est. $250
Reviewed
February 2012
by ConsumerSearch
Boston Acoustics Duo-i plus

Pros
  • Excellent sound quality
  • Easy to use, intuitive interface
  • Great reception
  • Touch-sensitive snooze bar
  • iPod dock
Cons
  • Large size
  • Alarm not as versatile as on other radios
  • Some reports of buzzing when charging an iPod
  • Reliability and durability complaints
  • Value could be better

Critics and owners give the Boston Acoustics Duo-i plus a thumbs-up for its great sound quality and features. There's no CD player, but it boasts a full-featured iPod dock with support for most iPods fourth generation and newer, and it can pass video to a TV via a video output on the radio. The Duo-i plus succeeds the nearly identical Duo-i, adding a shielding feature that allows an iPhone to be used without setting it to airplane mode.

The Duo-i plus has some welcome features that work especially well for a bedside radio. The easy-to-read LCD screen automatically adjusts to ambient light, and the strip of metal atop the dual alarm clock that serves as the snooze bar is hard to miss. Even so, some users say other table radios offer more versatile alarms, and others complain about the Duo-i's large size and a low-pitched buzz when charging an iPod. More troubling are reports from owners -- particularly of the black version -- who report long-term reliability issues. If your budget is tighter and you don't need an iPod dock, the Sangean WR-2 (Est. $120) is less expensive and draws kudos as a table radio, but its clock features are sometimes a challenge to use.

Detailed professional reviews of the Boston Acoustics Duo-i plus are available from CNET, PCMag.com and About.com, while Macworld and iLounge.com report on the nearly identical Duo-i. (Note: ConsumerSearch is owned by About.com, but the two don't share an editorial affiliation.) Owners post feedback at Amazon.com.

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Sangean WR-2 Digital AM/FM Tabletop Radio, Walnut
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Average Customer Review:  

Our Sources

1. CNET

CNET reviewer Jeff Bakalar gives a good overview of the features on the Boston Acoustics Duo-i plus, which he says is nearly identical to the Duo-i except it adds iPhone support. The Duo-i plus sets itself apart from competitors with its "incredible ease of use," has excellent sound quality, and is compatible with iPhones and all fourth-generation and higher iPods.

Review: Boston Acoustics Duo-i plus, Jeff Bakalar, Nov. 13, 2009

2. PCMag.com

PCMag.com gives the Boston Acoustics Duo-i plus a mediocre 3-star rating out of 5 in this detailed review. Audio performance is criticized at higher volume levels and the remote could be more functional. The alarm clock features are cool, but Tim Gideon says that considering the downsides, the value isn't great.

Review: Boston Acoustics Duo-i plus, Tim Gideon, Nov. 30, 2009

3. iLounge.com

Reviewer Jeremy Horwitz gives a comprehensive account, including photos, of the features and functionality of the original Boston Duo-i. He gives it an overall grade of A-, which corresponds to a rating of "highly recommended." He also compares the Duo-i to competing products, including some iHome table radios with iPod docks.

Review: Boston Acoustics Horizon Duo-i, Jeremy Horwitz, May 19, 2008

4. About.com

Reviewer Gary Altunian tests the Boston Acoustics Duo-i plus tabletop radio, awarding it 4 stars out of 5 based on performance, features and value. The Duo-i plus is the only product featured here and the review isn't truly comparative, but Altunian provides a helpful critical overview. (Note: ConsumerSearch is owned by About.com, but the two don't share an editorial affiliation.)

Review: Boston Acoustics Duo-i plus AM/FM Stereo Tabletop Radio With iPhone/iPod Dock, Gary Altunian, Not dated

5. Macworld

Macworld reviewer Dan Frakes gives the original Boston Acoustics Duo-i an excellent rating of 4.5 mice out of 5, calling it his "favorite 'iPod alarm clock' yet." While he says the Duo-i is more expensive than many of its competitors, the excellent audio quality and ease of use are worth it.

Review: Boston Acoustics Duo-i AM/FM Stereo Radio With iPod Dock, Dan Frakes, Dec. 2, 2008

6. Amazon.com

More than 45 owners give the gloss black version of the Boston Acoustics Duo-i plus 3.3 stars out of 5. Some say the tabletop radio is a bit too large, and a few report that it makes a low hum or buzz while charging an iPod. Others claim that the radio abruptly stops working, sometimes before the warranty period is up. While the white version gets much less feedback, owners seem more pleased. Those who are satisfied praise the Duo-i plus for its excellent sound quality.

Review: Boston Acoustics Duo-i Plus iPhone/iPod Dock AM/FM Stereo Radio and Clock Functions, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of Feb. 2012

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