SpeakerCraft’s latest receiver, the Vital 250, may technically carry a lower nomenclature in the line than its big brother the Vital 910, but it ups the ante in terms of cool features — notably an iPad dock right on top of the unit. Pairable with the new SpeakerCraft Roots series of speakers and subs, also introduced at CEDIA, the 250 is perhaps the ultimate self-contained (and expandable) digital music dock. If you decide to take advantage of the system’s upsampling ability in a larger stereo system, the Vital 250 even offers a video interface you can use for your music choices and a full array of inputs and outputs
At $699, I don’t know how many of the desktop music crowd of the younger generation this is really going to attract. And let’s face it: its not exactly something you’ll be able to slide into an equipment rack if you plan on using it to its full potential. But damn, it’s cool looking nonetheless.