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Revo in-car DAB digital radio system

Revo in car audio DAB tuner device
5th February 2006

Review

The Revo is a neat package incorporating a DAB digital tuner that's easy to carry around in your pocket when you're out of your vehicle.

Stylishly designed and finished, the Revo in-car control panel houses both the display and functions as well as the DAB electronics. It can be easily removed from its in-car cradle while you are away from the vehicle. It feels solid and well-built: buttons have a positive click when pressed.

The Revo in-car DAB tuner's white backlit display shows station information and DAB information text and is very easy to glance at - no taking your eyes off the road for long periods here! Presets have helpfully been arranged around the display and it's easy to distinguish presets by their position on the panel. It's far better to set up preset stations before you leave, and five is a useful amount for most listeners' needs.

Scanning stations on the move is simple, thanks to a sensibly-placed SCAN button below the fifth preset. Other display and menu functions are accessed via two other buttons surrounding the central on/off switch. This allows re-scanning for local multiplexes as you travel around the country and offers a much more ideal way method of station selection by name rather than simply by multiplex, as for example, the Blaupunkt range of in-car DAB tuners do.

The Revo's output connects to your existing car stereo's AUX input, however, there are less aesthetically-pleasing ways around this for older cars using a couple of cables connected to a cassette adaptor, for example.

The Revo's aerial fixes to the windscreen on the passenger side pillar, while the revo can be fixed at the best height and position for viewing and operation.

There are also a handful of add-ons, such as a Revo Dock that allows you to connect the DAB tuner up to your existing home hi-fi set-up. You can even double-up on another powered cradle for another car and swap the Revo in-car DAB tuner between the two.

The Revo seemed a bit steep at originally GBP199.99 for the unit and antenna, but is now down in price to GBP149.99 with free fitting at Halfords, which is a more acceptable price for such a tuner.

Images
Revo in-car DAB tuner
Revo in-car DAB tuner (reverse)
Revo car DAB tuner

Visitor reviews
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Ben writes about the Revo DAB car tuner: " Sadly, after three install visits now from REVO's recommended installers, the last swapping out the modulator (which did improve matters); the REVO unit in my Fiat car is still next to unusable, with the sound warbling and dropping out such that it is not really listenable unless you're parked in a good spot in a car park, which somewhat defeats the purpose of the unit.

" Living in London, where my Pure radios give excellent sound, the car unit sadly disappoints, and I've had to switch back to FM for the while until I can get it going. Revo's technical people are helpful, but at the last visit I was advised that there was not much more that they could do, and it might be down to the location being poor. Having now travelled through central London, and up to Bedford, I've yet to find a good place for reception.

" The unit does seem well made, and a good concept, but sadly what was my wife's Christmas present to me has turned into a bad joke.

" I will update this if and when any progress is made. "

Robert writes about the Revo DAB car tuner: " I bought a Revo DAB in-car system when the price dropped to GBP149.99 and the signal was constantly dropping out. I spoke to Revo customer services who were helpful and I had 3 new units, but none solved the problem. I took the unit back for a refund and bought a Sony head unit instead, which is excellent and reception rarely drops out at all. " Editor's note: Sony currently has an in-car DAB tuner.

Andy writes about the Revo DAB car tuner: " The Revo looks good and is easily installed , however my experience with this unit was dissapointing. The main unit sits in a cradle and is removable. A set of contacts on the underside of the main unit connect to corresponding contacts in the base of the cradle.

" When first installed using the supplied self adhesive windscreen aerial it was fine. Reception was excellent with minimal drop out when on the move. On the second day however, signal strength was poor and each time I changed station I recieved the 'station not available' message. After a little experimentation I discovered that applying downward pressure to the top of the main unit restored performance.

" On examining the underside of the unit I was able to see the problem. In short - poor design! The co-axial aerial connection between the cradle and the main unit was crude to say the least. To make matters worse there was also a sprung tensioner adjacent to the cradle aerial connection which effectively lifted the main unit away from the bottom of the cradle at this point. The purpose of this tensioner is a mystery as it does not retain the main unit in the cradle, this job is done by two identical side tensioners. The resulting poor interfacing between the aerial connectors was causing intermittent signal loss or reduced signal strength. After removing and replacing the main unit from the cradle few times the situation worsened to the extent, that the main unit required continous downward pressure in order to work.

" I suspect that the poor performance reported by other reviewers can be attributed to this problem. When working properly I found the actual performance of the Revo was excellent, it's a shame that a poorly designed aerial connection has rendered this radio useless. "

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