Ever since my wife got her first iPhone, we’ve been on the lookout for an alarm clock docking station. Modern smartphones need to be charged every night anyway, so why not put its cradle next to ours and have it charge, occasionally play music and wake us? We wanted something that would work with the new iPad as well, and with a relatively small footprint. The people at GearZap suggested the XtremeMac Luna Voyager II, and it arrived at our house last thursday.
A small, flat, plastic box
The “LV2″ looks like an alarm clock that an elephant sat on. It’s rather flat, and wider and deeper than most regular alarm clocks. Even the digits on the front are low and wide, which helps keep them easy to read. On top, there’s a 30 pin connector and a small support thingy that helps keep the docked device upright. This held the iPad firmly in place, but has little effect on my iPod Touch or the iPhone. This is one of those iPad accessories that probably wasn’t designed for the new 2012 iPad, but it fits perfectly.
There’s a battery compartment on the bottom. I didn’t test battery operation because I won’t be using it on the go. On the back, there’s a 12V power connector (the adapter is of course included, and comes with wall adapters for all common international sockets). There’s also a 3.5mm aux input for my Android phone, and a fixed FM antenna wire.
Waking up? There’s an app for that!
There are a couple of physical buttons on the Luna Voyager II, allowing you to set the alarms and control all of the basic functions without connecting an iDevice. But that’s not what this dock is all about. As soon as you dock your iPhone, it prompts you to install the Luna Voyager II app from the iTunes App Store, and that’s when the fun really begins. The app lets you set alarms, control volume, tune the FM radio, and sync those settings with the alarm clock. All in a familiar, easy to use iOS interface.
For its size, the XtremeMac doesn’t sound half bad. Mid range and high tones are about as good as you can expect from a small, plastic box. Don’t expect any bass, but it’s easily the best-sounding alarm clock I’ve ever had. If your primary function would be listening to music, I’d go for a bigger, dedicated speaker dock. But that’s a different class of devices entirely.
The Luna Voyager II is small, easy to set up and control (through the app), and offers reasonable sound quality. It’s small enough to take with you, but doesn’t come with a carrying bag to protect it. It’s a very nice iPad dock, but unfortunately, not ideal for watching video. This is because the iPad is docked in portrait orientation.