The Venturi Mini is a speakerphone that wirelessly streams music and phone calls over your car's stereo; it's a great accessory if you want to unleash the tunes on your music phone.

To stream songs wirelessly with the Venturi Mini, your mobile phone (or MP3 player) must support stereo Bluetooth.

Setup couldn't be easier. You plug the £99 Mini - an apropos name since it's about the size of a teeny mobile phone - into your vehicle's cigarette charger, tighten the ring at its base, and then swivel its neck to adjust the view. After you set the Venturi Mini to the FM frequency you want to broadcast over, you pair it with your phone.

Finding a good, open frequency can be a challenge. The Venturi Mini lacks a station-finding feature, and the first few random frequencies we tried produced too much static.

We have a minor grievance with the Venturi Mini's scrollwheel, which requires endless spinning to span the spectrum of FM frequencies. Conveniently, though, the device stores four station presets, and once you have your presets, you don't have to tinker too much with the wheel.

The Venturi Mini features a music button and a phone button on the top, along with play/pause and stop buttons at the bottom; these double for call answer and end when you're using it as a speakerphone.

The scrollwheel lets you advance and reverse tracks. Although the buttons don't protrude, the Venturi Mini's simple layout allows you to pick up calls and control music by feel. A bright OLED screen displays caller ID and other information.

We tested the Venturi Mini with Nokia's 5300 XPressMusic from T-Mobile and Motorola's Razr2 V9m from Verizon Wireless. While the device worked impeccably with the 5300 - controls were ultraresponsive, and music consistently stopped when calls came through, resuming afterward - it had a few fits with the V9m (Venturi acknowledges some compatibility issues with this phone).

NEXT PAGE: call quality, synching with a phone, and our expert verdict > >

Visit Mobile Advisor for the latest mobile phone news, reviews, tips & tricks

The Venturi Mini is a speakerphone that wirelessly streams music and phone calls over your car's stereo; it's a great accessory if you want to unleash the tunes on your music phone.

When we used the Venturi Mini as a hands-free Bluetooth speakerphone, callers said the call quality was good. Occasionally the phone didn't respond when we tried to pause or stop music, and once in a while tunes refused to recommence after hanging up.

With a few button clicks, you can redial the most recent number.

You can also import your phone book into the Venturi Mini, but in this respect our results were mixed. It easily imported contacts from the 5300, although only those designated as main numbers appeared.

The Venturi Mini refused to bring in contacts from the Razr (likely due to that phone's crippled Bluetooth data-transfer capabilities), and it consistently froze while importing iPhone entries. The company says that the latter problem is caused by the iPhone's long-form contact names and that the issue will be fixed in a future software release.

The Venturi Mini comes with an audio-in port and a cable for connecting a music player; an audio-out jack for wiring the Mini to your car stereo (if equipped with a 3.5mm input); and a USB port that allows you to charge your phone or other vehicular gadgets.

Visit Mobile Advisor for the latest mobile phone news, reviews, tips & tricks

Venturi Mini: Specs

  • Audio input for MP3 players
  • audio output for direct connection to your car radio
  • OLED screen with automatically adjustable brightness according to outside lighting conditions
  • Bluetooth interface: BTV2.0, class II, 2.4 GHz
  • Supported BT profiles: HFP, Headset, A2DP, AVRCP
  • Charger: 5Vdc, 500 mAh
  • 3.5mm audio jack
  • 84x43x15mm
  • 63g
  • Audio input for MP3 players
  • audio output for direct connection to your car radio
  • OLED screen with automatically adjustable brightness according to outside lighting conditions
  • Bluetooth interface: BTV2.0, class II, 2.4 GHz
  • Supported BT profiles: HFP, Headset, A2DP, AVRCP
  • Charger: 5Vdc, 500 mAh
  • 3.5mm audio jack
  • 84x43x15mm
  • 63g

OUR VERDICT

The Venturi Mini is a solid device if you want to listen to tunes and chat hands-free in your car, but be sure to check the site's phone-compatibility list before taking out your credit card.

Find the best price