Since wood is most speaker manufacturers’ material of choice, it’s perhaps surprising that we don’t see wooden cabinets elsewhere. Hence Revo’s Blok dock.
This hand-crafted wooden cabinet – yours in American walnut (pictured) or black oak – cuts a suave figure, managing to be imposing and welcoming at the same time.
The finish is to a fairly high standard, with smooth edges and a responsive volume control wheel – but while we’re definitely fans of the Bang & Olufsen-style hemispherical remote ‘Kontrol’, it can be a bit fussy.
Although it looks like some DAB/FM radio docks we’ve seen, the Blok is ‘just’ an iPod dock. Mains-powered, the only other connection you’ll find is a line input for connecting a non-Apple music player.
Two 4.5in NXT balanced-mode radiator speakers dish out your tunes, capable as they are of outputting 20W each. This type of speaker allows for just one driver to take care of treble and bass.
Goes up to 11
Sonically, it’s a different kettle of fish to your average iPod dock. The sound’s big and ballsy, and easily capable of filling a good-sized room. Pushed to a fair old volume, there’s no break up in sound quality either.
But listen to Take Me To The Hospital from The Prodigy’s latest album and it’s fair to say that we have our reservations, too.
Bass-lines need to be tighter: the wooliness to the bottom end affects punch, dynamics and clarity. Focus on the top-end, on the other hand, and there’s an edge to some treble frequencies that can grate if you’re having a long listening session.
We really wanted to love the Revo Blok. It’s great to see a company trying something different in terms of style and design – but for £200, the sound quality really needs to be better.