Arcam has launched the UK's first 'audiophile' dock for the Apple iPod - or so the company claims. It also says the £130 rDock delivers better sound quality than any of its rivals and can preserve the iPod's battery by using 'intelligent charging'.

Key to Arcam's claims is that it's discovered that the iPod sounds better when running off battery power than when running off the mains. The solution has been to put a switch on the front of the rDock which enables you to run your iPod in one of two modes - mains with iPod battery charging, or iPod battery only.

Other key features of the rDock are an analogue line output which bypasses the iPod's own headphone amp, along with S-video and composite video outputs so you can view iPod movies through your TV. It's also been designed to work with Arcam's £2,000 Solo Movie DVD home cinema receiver, giving you full control over iPod playback using the Solo Movie's remote and on-screen display.

The rDock, which is fashioned from a hefty block of aluminium, is on sale now at specialist hi-fi stores.