This is my first review, and I'll be looking at this product as honestly as possible.
This is a great little radio, like it very much but it does have its drawbacks especially in terms of installation.
It's fairly generic looking and not too flashy and blends in well to your average generic car
and because it's generic looking it will be unlikely to attract too much attention. Sometimes
generic is good. Might not be for you boy racers out there, but your Mum or Dad would probably like it.
It's not a powerful boom box driver but it's not too shabby, you shouldn't need to upgrade from your OEM speakers to use it.
Let's look at the features:
40 watts per channel - Most OEM speakers should cope with that, and any third party ones definitely should. Plenty of volume.
DAB - The main reason to buy this radio. At least in our Locality (Dewsbury, Wakefield, Leeds) we get a decent
signal. If you absolutely must have DAB and don't want one of those things hanging off the windscreen and don't
want to spend a huge amount of money then this is the way to go. Though it has to be said £110+ for a car radio
it's not that cheap. Tuning DAB on the move is probably a pain in the backside, best to save some presets to
flick through on the move.
DAB+ - For the future!
Fancy having your entire music collection on one or two of memory cards or usb sticks. Using a card reader from a PC also works, you could use practically any memory card that way.
For MP3 I recommend fixed bit rates, 128, 160, 192 at 44100khz, I've known variable bit rate files to have problems on some players but not all, I just use fixed bit rate anyway as a safegaurd.
Good old FM - Just in case your DAB signal cuts out.
AUX PORT - Great for internet radio via your phone (if you've got the bandwidth allowance to cope with it and a good signal) or you could plug in
your mp3 player/Ipod/or phone even.
SECURITY - This is a face of stereo so you can take it with you.
All in all plenty of possibilities. Well worth the money I though which is why I've bought three of them. :D
INSTALLATION: So far I've fitted this in a 2002 model Vauxhaul Corsa. In my case I was converting from an OEM stero (Original manufacturers radio), I found I had to swap the ignition and 12v accessory (battery) wires to get this radio to remember settings.
I plan to install in a Peugeot 206 and a DAF CF85 HGV in the near future.
THE ARIEL: The DAB portion of radio requires it's own ariel which is conveniently supplied with the radio. There are separate plugs for both DAB and FM. The FM ariel plugs in to the usual spot.
The DAB ariel supplied is of the Magnetic variety and sticks to the outside of your car. Routing this cable with ariel to a suitable location where it doesn't look like a total bodge job might be hard for the novice fitter. The best bet is to put the ariel in place and feed it round the rubber seals in doors and gaps in the interior and exterior fittings to hide the cable making sure there are no pinch points (like closing doors etc).
A glass mount ariel might be a better alternative. Not everyone is going to be happy about ariels and cables hanging around.
If you live in an area where DAB signals are weak then this will be worthless as a DAB radio and will basically become an FM radio with SD and USB capability.
But it is future proof, it has many features, overall a good radio. If you can be bothered fitting it properly. Though that's going to be a problem for most after market DAB car radios.