NetEasy USB Radio by D-Link
Available from: BigPockets
BigPockets have provided us with a small, very light external
PC Radio that fits into your USB port. They describe it as "the funkiest
product we have seen" and comes with MP3 conversion software so you it
is possible to save radio transmissions as MP3 files. Produced by the well known
D-Link (often associated with networking equipment) this radio costs a mere
"listen to your favorite FM radio program or your style
of music while you work on your PC"
True Plug and Play Installation
Full FM radio band ( no AM)
Dipole FM radio antenna
FM Recording software
Mp3 Conversion software
What you get:
The basic package includes the main unit (pictured above), a detachable
aerial and a USB & mini jack connector (for line-in into your sound card)
- not to mention of course the drivers and manual. I took a quick look at the
manual and it provides good instructions for both installation of the device
and software, if anything they lacked detail.
As you can see the USB radio is very small and extremely portable, especially
as the aerial can be detached and folded down. This could be useful for laptop
users and as the device is powered from the USB port no external power supply
is required. The red socket in the centre is a single phono socket where the
aerial can simply be plugged in.
Flip side: The PCB is visible through the IMAC style housing. Also pictured
are the six feet which give this device great stability, even when the aerial
is fully extended.
Above you can see the USB radio fully assembled. Not only can the aerial be
extended it can also be swiveled so you can get the best reception. For £5.99
I would have perhaps expected the plastic to be poor quality but in fact it
is the exact opposite. The whole devices build quality feels great and is finished
off very nicely indeed. I had no problems installing the device under Windows
XP, it was just a case of using the driver cd provided. D-Links instructions
are as follows:
1. Plug Radio hardware USB flat connector into the USB port of your PC. If
the PC has a sound card, plug the Radioís RCA cable into the existing
LINE IN or MIC port of the sound card.
2. The computer will detect Radio and look for a driver. If a driver is not
found, it will then prompt for one. At this time, make sure that your Radio
software CD ROM is inserted into your computer CD ROM drive.
3.The computer is now ready to install the Radio driver from CD ROM drive.
After the device had be recognized and was functional I installed the USB Radio
software. D-Link provide some software to get your USB radio up and running
in no time.
At first the software does look a bit dated, but the important
thing is that decent features are available. The software provides many features
Adjustable volume levels (master, radio and wave)
Scan and manual tuning
Recording of radio to Mp3
The main interface displays useful information in an LCD style.
Notice that this USB radio only supports FM radio reception. The L and R level
indicators are a nice touch to the software, although they do require a small
amount of CPU power.
Another useful feature this time indicating the amount of disk
space remaining. This isn't so useful as newer computers tend to have excessive
disk space but works well for older systems and those of us lacking space.
Another excellent product provided by BigPockets.co.uk
, you just wont find a cheaper USB radio. Being cheap you tend to think the
device would be poor quality but this is far from true- the radio offers many
features only really lacking the selection of radio bands (limited to FM) These
types of radio are fast being replaced by digital radio although this is still
a brilliant buy. Overall a good product
Very good product from £5.99
Small and portable
AM/MW/LW radio bands
Software looks a bit out of date