Geneva ‘M’ 

This is a rather good iPod playing device, that just for good measure can play CD’s – of various types – has an FM radio and an ‘Aux’ input to play anything that can connect via a 3.5mm jack plug.

Geneva 'M' iPod music system

The first unusual thing about this 'box' is that it had no controls on it at all. Everything is done via the remote control. It is 37x26x19cm with leads plugged into the rear. Mine was white with a white grill on the front, at the top right of this- behind the grill - is a six character red LED display that displays what, where and how.

The top has the name Geneva on the front edge and in the centre a slot loading CD. The sides are bare and the back has connections for FM aerial (provided), Power adapter (provided) iPod lead (provided) and also a 3.5mm jack input (cable supplied)  all in a line at the bottom of the back.

This is certainly minimalism in all but size. The front hides two sets of two speakers close together behind the grill and that's it. The manual is in nine languages of which the first 27 pages are in English. It is well written and laid out and the diagrams are well annotated.

Perhaps the most important thing I can say is do not lose the remote control as without it the device is no more than an expensive doorstop. The remote is 15x5x1cm and the supplied 3volt circular battery is supplied installed just pull out the plastic shield and it's ready to go.

There are a total of 23 buttons. The top is the on/off switch the next two rows of three control bass, treble and volume. The treble and bass go from -6 to +6 and the volume from 0 to 100. Whatever the settings you turn it off at is what it starts at next time. The last row in this group of nine are iPod, CD and FM.

The next four buttons are start, back, forward and stop.

The last nine -another three rows of three- start with an AIR button that is not applicable to this unit, eject and line in. The other six has me initially foxed they are P R E on one line and S E T on the second line. Of course when spelled together it becomes clear PRESET.

As a CD player the sound is good and crisp but apart from the forward and back you have no more control and the display just displays the track number Cd  3 etc. It can however also plays MP3 files and CD-DA, CD-R, CD-RW and CD-ROM formats.

As an FM radio you can either scroll up or down the waveband and having found a station you like save it to a PRESET by just holding it down, however remember which you have filled as if there is already a station on that letter it will be overwritten.

Rather than have a dock needing various sleeves the Geneva M uses a cable that should fit all iPods and it just lies by or on the unit. The iPod is charged while connected even if you are using the radio or CD. Most iPods can be controlled by the remote of the Geneva.

The Line In function can be any device with a 3.5 jack and while it just outputs the sound quality of the unit is good. They use a system called Embracing Sound that gives a nice rounded sound for the unit.

Most will probably have guessed that this is not cheap from the links below it is £499. It should also be available in Black or Red as well as the White I had. I did find one quote of $699 and while that's under £400 (at current rates) no doubt by the time duty and VAT are added there would be little in it.

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