Top critical review
118 people found this helpful
Some improvements needed
on November 6, 2011
This can be a great system depending on your needs. The sound is really good. There is only simple sound adjustments (sort of like a basic car radio) but at least in our space (tile floor, stone wall, drywall, lots of windows, kitchen cabinets) it sounds great. So we have managed to make it work in our context but there's a couple of things you should consider if you are looking into getting one:
1. there is a long delay when it turns on. By long I mean: longer than my MacBook Air takes to reboot. So in the morning, you turn it on and, in our case, you have time to go feed the cats before any sound comes out of it...
2. browsing internet radios is awkward. It has no capability for an alphanumeric search so stations are just listed in categories (e.g., genre, countries, etc.). So even if you know exactly what you are looking for (in my case, I wanted to find NPR), you have to figure out where the station would be in those categories and then scroll, and scroll, and scroll... by the way, it does not seem to have a page-scroll feature, so you scroll stations or categories one by one.
3. believe it or not, the remote is not multidirectional (so last century!). If you are planning on using the remote, make sure you will be pretty much in front of this device. For example, we bought this for our dining room, which is separated from the kitchen only by a counter. So I can raise or lower the volume if I'm cooking.
4. It has no AM or HD radio, so FM is all you get over the air. In our case it was an issue, because our local station does not transmit in FM. However, streaming may get around that issue... see next point.
5. It plays well with AirPlay. This has been one of the reasons we decided to keep it. So I figured it should be possible to access the stream of our local radio through iTunes, which you can easily do. The only trick is to figure out the URL of the stream. But if you do have the URL, then you just select "advanced" in the iTunes menu and then "Open Stream." That's how we manage to listen to the morning news.
Bottom line: The sound is great and can only be better if you have carpet and draperies. If you are not interested in finding internet stations easily and you don't mind the wait until the system boots, it could be a good option for you.