Pure launch new Highway DAB Radio

Friday, November 25th, 2011

One of the first articles on the UK Gadgeteer website back in 2007 was around the PURE Highway, a portable DAB radio designed for car use.  This turned out to be a very popular device, although one small complaint about it was that it had to connect to the windscreen mount, and you had to have wires all over the dashboard (aerial & power).  Competitors, such as Revo, produced DAB addon car units which needed more permanent fitting in the car, however, Revo have now left the car market.

Well, Pure are addressing these issues and have launched a new Highway DAB radio, the Pure Highway 300Di.  This unit has a small control unit (removable, for when you want to hide the presence of the unit) using an OLED screen (and backlit buttons).  In fact, the simple display / buttons and control knob remind me of the very successful Parrot range of Bluetooth car kit control units).  This connects to a control box designed for placing behind the dash, or in the glovebox.  This needs permanent connections to the car (I suspect it’ll possible to DIY fit it, but it’s not designed for plugging into a cigaretter lighter, unlike the PURE Highway, which remains on sale for those who want a truely portable unit).

As well as providing DAB (via a DAB aerial which needs external fitting), the unit has a USB port allowing you to plug in USB memory sticks, USB devices, or you can use your Apple USB cable and the device will be able to fully control (and charge) your Apple iPod or iPhone.

Most DAB radios only have one tuner, whereas most car radios adopted the idea of dual tuners quite a few years ago; this allows the second tuner to go hunting for a stronger signal without impacting the radio playback, and in fact, the Pure Highway 300Di has a second tuner which will automatically keep the station list up to date with only the stations available as you travel around the country.

To connect it to your car, you can either use an AUX-IN type socket, or it can use an FM transmitter, either wireless using the car’s existing aerial, or it can be wired into the aerial circuit giving a crackle free experience.

In addition, Pure have added a couple of innovative new modes:

  • Forcourt mode, where the device will go into standby for up to 15 minutes, allowing you to return to your car, and the unit will already be ready for action with the same music.  In you are listening to the DAB radio, you can pause (for up to 8 minutes) and continue listening when you return to the car.
  • Picnic mode, where the device is able to continue playing the music for up to an hour after the car ignition is switched off.  The 1 hour limit is to prevent the car battery being drained, although some cars will limit you to only 15 minutes even though the unit could do longer.

For those wanting to add DAB to your existing car, and want something a little more permanent than the PURE Highway, this may well be the device for you.  Pricing will be £179.99, although it’s not yet available, it will be sold exclusively through Halfords for a period.

Having said it’s not available, I believe it should be on sale within the next week or two, and during the initial launch, Halfords will be offering free fitting (normally around £25).


Revo release new AXiS software

Friday, January 21st, 2011

Revo Technologies have released an updated firmware for their Revo AXiS Internet / DAB radio. This adds two features of note; firstly, the device now supports the DAB Slideshow feature (more information on this feature here), which allows the unit to display graphical content provided by the DAB radio station.  It also adds the ability to specify how long the backlight stays on when the unit is in standby.  With this feature, you are able to turn the screen back on by moving the volume control either way to light the screen, and then after the preset period, the backlight will turn off again.

Revo Technologies have confirmed that they are planning a similar update for the Revo Ikon, although there is no date for release available yet.  If you have a Revo AXiS, then it should find the update automatically, and prompt you to install.

It’s nice to see a manufacturer releasing updates for existing hardware which adds new features, instead of only incorporating these new features into new hardware.  The update was released yesterday, so should appear soon on your DAB radio. In terms of UK radio stations that support DAB slideshow, these include BBC Radio 1, Capital Radio, Heart Radio, XFM and Magic (possibly Virgin Radio Xtreme and Kiss as well), and only a handful of DAB radios support it, including the PURE Sensia and the Revo AXiS.

Revo Technologies have also indicated there are working on 3 new models for 2011, which will be on sale in Q3 / Q4 this year.  They have also announced a limited edition “Black Oak” variant of their Revo HERITAGE radio should be available for sale at some point in the next few weeks.


Pure announce new iPod / iPhone dock

Thursday, January 6th, 2011

Pure are promoting this as an advanced Apple iPod / iPhone dock, but to be honest, they could have easily promoted it as a DAB radio or an Internet Radio with a dock.  It also features a smooth satin-touch finish, a full-function remote and backlit touch-sensitive controls.  The Pure Contour offers a whole range of features, including:

  • DAB, FM and Internet Radio options
  • iPod / iPhone dock
  • Digital end-to-end technology (Pure ClearSOUND)
  • 36W RMS of class-leading audio
  • Digital, FM and Internet radio
  • Flow technology for internet radio, on-demand content including podcasts, PURE Sounds and media streaming from a computer
  • 30 digital radio favourites, 10 FM favourites and unlimited internet favourites
  • Retractable dock with smooth damped movement
  • Component (YPbPr), S-Video and Composite video outputs for viewing iPod/iPhone video on your TV
  • Stereo headphone socket
  • Alarms and timers
  • Upgradeable via Wi-Fi, Ethernet or USB

All in all, a very nice, well specced unit.  However, it should be given the price; it will retail at £200!

No word on availability yet.


A quick thanks to Argos

Wednesday, October 27th, 2010

After offering a prize for the recent UK Gadgeteer competition, Argos have kindly agreed to upgrade the prize from a 3rd generation Apple iPod Touch to the latest, 4th generation iPod Touch, and so Michelle from Leeds will soon receive an even better prize than we originally advertised!  Thanks again go to Argos for this gesture.


Apple iPod Touch winner announced!

Friday, October 15th, 2010

Congratulations to Michelle from Leeds who won our competition for the Apple iPod Touch, courtesy of Argos.  I’ve contacted Argos with your details, and you should receive your prize shortly.  This competition had over 700 valid entries, so thanks to everyone who entered.


Competition ends tonight!

Thursday, September 30th, 2010

Don’t forget our competition ends this evening at midnight.  Any entries received after then will be classed as invalid.  Visit our Competition Page to find out how to enter and win an Apple 8GB iPod Touch, courtesy of Argos.

This prize has been supplied courtesy of Argos, who provide a wide range of mp3 players, such as the iPod Touch.


Competition finishes in a few days

Monday, September 27th, 2010

Don’t forget our competition to win an Apple 8GB iPod Touch finishes in the next few days, when we’ll announce the winner.  For more information, head to our Competition Page where the full instructions are included.

This prize has been supplied courtesy of Argos, who provide a wide range of mp3 players, such as the iPod Touch.


Competition to win an iPod Touch going strong

Thursday, September 23rd, 2010

Don’t forget our competition to win an Apple 8GB iPod Touch courtesy of Argos continues until 30th September.  We’ve had a phenomenal number of entries so far, although quite a few have had to be rejected as they haven’t followed even the simplest of guidelines as listed on our Competition Page.

This prize has been supplied courtesy of Argos, who provide a wide range of mp3 players, such as the iPod Touch.


Competition Time!

Monday, September 13th, 2010

It’s time for another UK Gadgeteer competition, and this is another one worth winning!  Argos have kindly offered an Apple 8GB iPod Touch (3rd generation) as the prize, and all the details, including the question and how to win are on our Competition Page here.  Good luck, and the competition is open for a couple of weeks (until 30th September) to give every time to enter!

This prize has been supplied courtesy of Argos, who provide a wide range of mp3 players, such as the iPod Touch.


Revo announce new colour touchscreen DAB radio

Thursday, September 2nd, 2010

After the successful launch of the Revo Ikon (released last year), Revo have now added another touchscreen DAB radio to their portfolio, and have released this unit as the first “under £200 colour touchscreen digital radio with multi-format reception”. What does that really mean? It means DAB radio (and DAB+), FM radio, Internet radio, ability to play Last.fm music streams, ability to play music from a PC, ability to play music from an iPhone / iPod attached via it’s dock, and if that’s not enough, it’s got an AUX socket and stereo RCA sockets for piping other music to the device.

The radio features a 3.5″ TFT colour touchscreen, with a similar user interface as that used on the Revo Ikon, and has an 8W amplifier and NXT’s Balanced Radiator loudspeaker technology.

I like the range of technologies that Revo put into their DAB radios, and expanded their touchscreen range makes sense, especially by introducing a cheaper device (although with a less powerful amplifier and it appears to not have the stereo speakers of the Revo Ikon).  As with the Revo Ikon and the PURE Sensia, the device only comes with a limited trial subscription to Last.fm (in this case, 31 days), so to continue to use the streaming facilities you’ll need to pay £3 per month.

The Revo AXiS will be available from 1st October 2010, and be sold at £199.95.