The Freecom MusicPal is an internet radio rather than a DAB model. This first attempt at an internet radio is classier than some models we've seen and, while not as full-featured as the Noxon2, beats it for looks.

We liked the Freecom MusicPal's low-profile elongated design and the simplicity of its two dials and single large screen.

The Freecom MusicPal seems to have a larger LED display than other internet radios. This is great, because it means there's room enough for a large clock display with time and date information shown immediately below it.

A scrolling line of text shows the currently selected radio station on the Freecom MusicPal along with any supplementary description of the station, the show or the tunes playing that the broadcaster has chosen to include.

Setting up the Freecom MusicPal involves fiddling about with one of these dials in order to enter the sequence of alphanumeric characters to log on to your Wi-Fi network. We could have done without this laborious process but, once connected, found it a boon to have access to the many hundreds of internet radio stations as well as our MP3 collection on demand.

The speaker that takes up the lefthand side of the Freecom MusicPal's front distorts a little when cranked up to the not-very-loud highest level. For relaxing background music and general entertainment the audio quality is more than adequate and, since it doubles as an alarm clock, you probably wouldn't thank Freecom for making it much louder.

Freecom MusicPal: Specs

  • 240Mhz Marvel Orion processor
  • 32MB DRAM memory
  • 20 bit D/A converter
  • supported bit depth: 8-bit, 16-bit stereo or mono
  • 802.11b/g, RJ45 (Ethernet)
  • WEP, WPA, WPA2
  • Composite, line out (stereo)
  • 5V external power adapter (included)
  • 3W mono linear magnetic drive full range loudspeaker
  • 265x115x80mm
  • 600g
  • MP3 (CBR/VBR up to 320 kBit/s), WAV (LPCM)
  • PnP, HTML (Web GUI), DHCP, fixed IP, WLAN, Live RSS/Blog feeds in display, Podcast (MP3/WAV), ID3 (V1.0 / V2.0), M3U, PLS
  • vTuner, Shoutcast
  • 128x64 pixel display
  • Open firmware (based on Linux Kernel 2.6), upgradeable to ensure that the latest capabilities and services can be offered on your Freecom Music
  • 240Mhz Marvel Orion processor
  • 32MB DRAM memory
  • 20 bit D/A converter
  • supported bit depth: 8-bit, 16-bit stereo or mono
  • 802.11b/g, RJ45 (Ethernet)
  • WEP, WPA, WPA2
  • Composite, line out (stereo)
  • 5V external power adapter (included)
  • 3W mono linear magnetic drive full range loudspeaker
  • 265x115x80mm
  • 600g
  • MP3 (CBR/VBR up to 320 kBit/s), WAV (LPCM)
  • PnP, HTML (Web GUI), DHCP, fixed IP, WLAN, Live RSS/Blog feeds in display, Podcast (MP3/WAV), ID3 (V1.0 / V2.0), M3U, PLS
  • vTuner, Shoutcast
  • 128x64 pixel display
  • Open firmware (based on Linux Kernel 2.6), upgradeable to ensure that the latest capabilities and services can be offered on your Freecom Music

OUR VERDICT

A stylish internet - rather than DAB - radio set, alarm clock and MP3 player. It's not the loudest, and setup is a bind, but we liked the Freecom MusicPal.

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