Top critical review
204 people found this helpful
on December 21, 2009
As promising as this product sounds, based on our experience it will be short-lived. Here are some facts about the unit and Ion Audio's business practices (as of 21Dec09) that you should know BEFORE PURCHASING:
1. 90 Day Warranty - that's about how long it took for our product to systematically malfunction. Our teenagers and we used the unit less than 10 times and never outdoors. You might even say it was pampered. And yet, it won't hold a charge and now emits no sound at all (regardless of the input device; in our case an iPod(G4 Nano, G1 iPod, and/or G2 iPod Video), microphone, and electric bass guitar).
2. Battery - oddly enough, according to Ion's own technical support staff (whose contact information was very difficult to find) you can NEVER overcharge the battery or allow it to drain completely, else the battery CANNOT BE REVIVED! Honestly, who builds batteries like that anymore or incorporates them into consumer electronics? We can't think of a single appliance that we own that doesn't self regulate. Furthermore, what human is so fastidious as to ever be able to monitor battery life with such expertise? Honestly, unless the device came with a meter, one would never know how close to overcharging or undercharging he actually is. And yet, one slip up and the unit is toast? That's an old-fashioned technology at best.
3. Repairability - finally, if you're going to install a battery of this sort or any other component that is likely to fail within 90 days, design and manufacture the unit in a repairman-friendly fashion(eg. easy to access compartments and swappable components). This unit required 22 wood screws to be removed for diagnostic purposes alone and nearly everything inside was soldered. As for the speaker, forget about ever getting to it without destroying the cabinet. You'll have to dissassemble the entire unit.
Take our advice, stay away from this product until the company addresses these 3 basic issues. We still love the concept, but this product is poorly executed. (Note: As far as we can tell, the: (1) Ion Audio iPA03 Portable PA System, (2) Alesis Transactive Mobile/Portable PA System and (3) PYLE PCMX240I Battery Powered Portable PA System are identical and probably manufactured by the same company, so beware. A lemon by any other name is still a lemon.)
D & H Shelley
PS: If Ion Audio LLC ever wants to contact us and make things right, we'll gladly retract this complaint...and may even consider starting a fan club instead. Until then, it's just a great idea, poorly executed, and frustrating to the consumer.