ASUS Internet Radio (AIR)
- Good sound quality, wide range of stations, excellent design
- No media streaming
The ASUS Internet Radio (AIR) is an excellent Internet radio with good sound and rock solid design.
Price$ 299.00 (AUD)
A mixture of retro and modern tech, the ASUS Internet Radio (AIR) uses your home network to access online radio stations from around the globe. Simple and easy to set up, the unit is like opening a door to the world, with music from local radio stations, as well as locations as far reaching as Africa, Brazil and even Liechtenstein. You can also tune in to stations you wouldn't think possible. We particularly enjoyed the Air Traffic Control chatter at JFK Airport in New York.
The ASUS Internet Radio can connect to the Internet using either a wired connection or a handy Wi-Fi option. Setting up the device is a breeze; using the on screen menu, all you need to do is select the wired or wireless option and fill in the details. A wired connection will automatically acquire an IP, but you will need to fill out a few extra details for the wireless connection, especially if you have a secure network.
The stations can be browsed by either genre or location. If you are in the mood for Jazz, there are a hundred jazz stations to choose from. Are you more of a rock metal fan, a fan of 1920s radio plays, fascinated by police scanners or into movie soundtracks? There are stations to cater for a diverse variety of tastes. Alternatively, you may just want to listen to music from a specific country or region of the world. The list of countries is extensive but not quite complete. While we regularly came across countries we never expected, our quest for music from the central African country of Chad left us bitterly unsatisfied.
Once you find a station that tickles your fancy you can add it to your favourites list. The first five favourites can be accessed using the five shortcut buttons on the front of the device which is an especially handy feature.
The sound quality via the integrated speaker is good at moderate levels, but tends to distort at higher levels with a marked degree of chassis resonance. However, if the speakers are not to your liking, there is also RCA audio-out ports on the rear and a headphone jack on the front of the device. There is also a 3.55mm auxiliary input jack on the rear to hook up external devices to the AIR, although the manual and the menus are not clear on how to pass the audio through.
The ASUS Internet radio is a great product and is on par with the extremely similar Noxon Noxon iRadio. However, this device is different in that it does not stream audio from a PC. All in all, this is an excellent device and will provide exciting, diverse and unlimited entertainment.
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When the Hypertext Transfer Protocol was introduced nearly 30 years ago, the Internet was a small, cozy club hosting just one website.
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