Revo Blik RadioStation review
If you want variety, the Revo has it in spades. The whole gamut of radio sources is catered for here: traditional FM, digital (both DAB and DAB+) and Wi-Fi radio, as well as media streaming from a PC. The manufacturer claims that this is the first product in the world to bring all these together, and it’s certainly the first that we’ve seen.
A handy auxiliary input is also thrown in, confusingly labelled as an MPort, so the RadioStation can be used as a set of external speakers for an MP3 player too.
Following the manual, it’s straightforward to enable streaming from a PC or an Apple computer, although the menu lacks the stylish ease-of-use of dedicated streaming devices such as the Logitech Squeezebox Duet.
All of these options are easy to use, with settings accessible from a simple menu system, which subtly changes depending on the source currently selected. Even getting internet radio up and running (via the Frontier service) is a doddle, complicated only by having to enter the Wi-Fi password – a necessary evil that’s a common and frustrating feature of all internet radios. It supports WEP, WPA and WPA2, and, thankfully, you only have to run this fiddly gauntlet once.
The menus can be navigated using either the buttons on the top of the device or on the included remote. Strangely, the layout of both keypads is different, despite containing essentially the same functionality. Another unfortunate design choice is the use of a thin remote control with bubble buttons. These may save space, but are not the most responsive; sometimes we found ourselves pushing the same key a couple of times before getting a response.
Despite this, the RadioStation is wonderfully simple to use, and sounds great. There may be only one speaker, but it creates a surprising amount of volume. It lacks a little bass, but performs perfectly well for such a small radio. If you need to, you can always connect up to some external speakers with the phono output on the back.
The unit itself has a great scarred-top design that resembles Morse code – far more attractive than a plain old speaker grill. It’s also remarkably small and light considering the amount of features packed into it, which is why it’s such a shame that there’s no battery power to free it from a power socket like Revo’s more portable Pico radio.
The alarm clock feature is one bonus that helps make up for this. Up to four alarms can be set, using any choice of input to wake you up. Even internet radio can be used, if you trust the stability of your internet connection enough to not fail on you in the middle of the night.
For just £127 the RadioStation offers good value for money if you come close to making full use of all the features. If you only ever plan to use, say, DAB, then you may be able to find something dedicated for less money. But as an all-in-one solution the Revo is an excellent investment.