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Altec Lansing inMotion iM7 review

Motion by name, immobile by nature

Our Verdict

Expensive for the sound quality you get, and needs a lot of heavy batteries if you're going to carry it around


  • It's still portable
  • Handy carry handle


  • Not the finest sound
  • Portability limited
  • It's rather expensive for the sound
  • Needs eight D batteries

When a piece of hardware is given a name containing the word 'motion', you tend to think it's able to be, you know, carried around a bit. To the beach perhaps. Or the park. And when you first pick it up, this scenario doesn't seem too outlandish.

Okay, so it's essentially a souped-up boom box, but it's certainly no bigger than a tape deck like those carried around New York streets in 1980s films. True, the carry handle isn't ideal; you'll need to get a firm grip to stop the boom box slipping off your hand. But, unfortunately, the inMotion has a far greater issue than that: power.

At home, you can use the mains. But out and about, juice is a little more difficult to obtain. Just ask Marty McFly. Mind you, that's why batteries were invented. And yes, the inMotion takes batteries. But the problem is it takes rather a lot of them. Eight to be precise.

Eight! And there's a further problem - they're D size! (That's the really, really big ones.) So T. Hmm. Suddenly portability seems a less attractive option. In fact, you'll probably need to drive your car to the park to drop it off before you can enjoy your picnic.

The sound isn't the best we've heard (see the i-deck on the next page), while the distortion from even a little too much bass is terrible. The remote was rather unresponsive, too. But credit is due for having a separate volume control rather than relying on the iPod's controls.

The iM7 works with bottomdock iPods and iPod minis (an adaptor for minis is included). The panel you slot your iPod into has a clever soft-eject mechanism. The iPod doesn't fit that snugly in the slot, though. And for the best part of £200, there are far better options for your money - it's not quite the finished article in our eyes. Dan Grabham