The Gravitas is the heavyweight of iOS docks

Henge-Docks' US$89 Lightning Gravitas is a serious dock for iPhones and iPads. With all-metal construction that weighs in at about 2.5 pounds, this dock is going to stay on your desk.

Despite its heft, it has a small footprint (3 x 3.3 x 2.5 inches). How's that possible? The folks at Henge-Dock says it's due to a metal alloy that's "265% more dense than aluminum."

As you might guess from its name, the Lightning Gravitas is designed to work with iOS devices equipped with a Lightning connector. However, it also sports a USB port for charging and syncing (more on this in a moment), so it will work with just about any iPhone or iPad. I'm not sure about the upcoming iPad Pro and the product website doesn't mention the iPhone 6s or 6s Plus. However, the Gravatis worked just find with my iPhone 6s Plus.

Of course, these devices come in various sizes. That's why the Gravitas comes equipped with inserts to accommodate different devices. The inserts also, theoretically, let you use your iDevice with the dock without removing the case. If found that this was true in most cases, although the fit was more than snug with thicker cases attached.

Inserting and removing the iDevices I tested (iPhone 6s Plus, iPad Air 2, and iPad mini with Retina display) was easy. There was no unnecessary force required to insert or remove my gadgets — unless they were decked out in extra thick cases.

Unlike many other docks, the Gravitas comes with an audio line-out that allows it to be used with an external speaker system. Connect a 3.5 to 3.5mm cable to the Gravitas and an audio system and the music is channeled from the iOS device into whichever speaker system you choose.

Alas, the charging/syncing feature isn't perfect. The connection allows for easy connection to iTunes and draws power no matter what’s plugged in. However, it doesn’t support full 2.4A charging speeds. With my wife's iPad mini with Retina display connected to the Gravitas, it was only drawing about 1.9A. That's not a deal breaker, but is a slight concern.

At almost $70, the Gravitas isn't inexpensive. However, it does, as mentioned, include a built-in Lightning connector, is heavy enough to allow one-hand operation (you don't have hold onto the dock with one hand and pull on your iDevice with another), and provides the audio line-out. If you don't need or want either of those items, you should go with a cheaper dock.

However, if you want a sturdy dock with some serious extras, the Gravitas is a heavyweight contender. Plus, it's now 20 bucks cheaper than when it was first introduced.