Belkin’s Thunderstorm Handheld Home Theatre: Take your iPad to the movies

Despite having splashed out a few years ago on a big telly (the prices of which are now comically low) I watch a lot of content on my iPad. Especially after I discovered that Netflix has all 5 seasons of Friday Night Lights and that my deadlines were “flexible”. But great though the iPad is – and it is pretty great it’s not quite the same as a trip to the movies, or a fancy home cinema set up. Belkin know this and want to beef up the iPad viewing experience with the Thunderstorm Handheld Home Theatre.


Belkin teamed up with mobile sound leader Audifi so the the Thunderstorm Handheld Home Theatre features high-efficiency, front-facing speakers that project cinematic-quality sound. Not your grandfather’s iPad dock, the Thunderstorm features ported speakers and integrated air channels in the design allow optimal airflow so bass frequencies come alive. It’s the sort of thing the Inception soundtrack was composed for.

There’s also a downloadable Thunderstorm App for extended control with customisable soundscapes for music, movies and games. There’s Musical which is balanced for music and web video; Cinematic which has a broader soundscape with simulated accentuated middle channel to lend clarity and presence to dialogue; and Action which spreads the soundscape out to its fullest extent and sharpens sound effects so games explode off the screen.

Designed to fit flush around the iPad, the Belkin Thunderstorm Handheld Home Theatre connects directly through the iPad dock connector for a seamless, unified experience. This direct connection eliminates the possibility of dropping the connection to the speaker and provides optimal calibration for the audio sound effects. It also features a multi-fold cover for a variety of comfortable viewing angles and screen protection.

Belkin tapped us to engineer the sound performance of the Thunderstorm Handheld Home Theatre from the inside out and we’re happy to see end results that deliver an immersive mobile audio experience. Through the design of core circuits, sound processing, custom speakers and a surprisingly thin acoustic enclosure, Audifi engineered a level of sonic depth and precision that was, until now, impossible to achieve in mobile devices.

Bruce Lancaster, general manager and vice president at Audifi.

The Belkin Thunderstorm Handheld Home Theatre will be available for both 30-pin connectors and the new Lightning connector.

Belkin Thunderstorm Handheld Home Theatre – £179.99/€229.99