All of a sudden there's a real buzz about internet radio. It's not as though the concept hasn't been around for years but, driven by a surge in podcasts, all web-based audio seems to have gained momentum. When PC Advisor ran a survey earlier in the year, hundreds of you told us that one of your chief activities when online was listening to music.

So Terratec's Noxon 2 box – which streams web and locally stored MP3, WMA and M3U music tracks – couldn't be timed better. It helps you extend your listening pleasure by accessing internet radio from around your home. As long as it's able to make use of a Wi-Fi or wired connection, you don't even need to have your PC on.

The Noxon 2 automatically finds the fastest signal available. It takes a few moments to switch on, but you can then listen to tracks from your Favourites list or tune into an internet radio station. There are hundreds of feeds available – Terratec's menus will quickly take you to popular and new ones, as well as categorising the stations by musical genre.

We like the styling of this discreet box. Its case (white, with a curved silver surround) has just a few thumb-sized buttons along its top. The way it looks reminds us of the Mac mini PC.

The Noxon comes with a small black Wi-Fi antenna. Alternatively, you can use a physical connection. The blue screen with yellow lettering isn't too classy, but it means you can view the screen from a distance and change stations via the infrared remote. Speakers and cabling are not supplied.

Terratec Noxon 2 Audio: Specs

  • UPnP streaming audio device
  • 802.11g Wi-Fi
  • ethernet
  • USB 2.0
  • analogue/digital audio outputs
  • headphone socket
  • Windows Media Audio, MP3 (including DRM-protected) and M3U music playback
  • TwonkyVision software
  • remote control
  • UPnP streaming audio device
  • 802.11g Wi-Fi
  • ethernet
  • USB 2.0
  • analogue/digital audio outputs
  • headphone socket
  • Windows Media Audio, MP3 (including DRM-protected) and M3U music playback
  • TwonkyVision software
  • remote control

OUR VERDICT

Internet radio is cheap and diverse, and enables you to discover music and expand your horizons. Now Terratec has provided an easy way of sharing your spoils with the rest of the family.

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