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i.Tech Clip D-Radio
i.Tech has established itself as one of the forerunners in Bluetooth technology, with products such as the BluePRO and BlueBand Stereo Bluetooth headsets. In fact it was only a couple of weeks ago that we reviewed i.Tech’s BlueCON II stereo Bluetooth dongle. That was among a range of products we received at Tech 2.0.
Up next for review is the Clip D-Radio headset from i.Tech that combines Bluetooth technology with what the company claims to be a sleek and stylish design, coupled with an integrated FM Radio as well. Well, here’s what I found...
I’m not a fan of the design at all. For one thing it’s rather bulky and heavy. Then the color is a bit too gaudy for my taste. Simply put, the Clip D-Radio is just that, a clip with a Bluetooth radio as well as an integrated FM radio. It has a small single color (blue) OLED display in front, beside a five-way nav-pad with assorted functions.
The volume keys are located on the side of the device, and a 3.5mm earphone socket is in the rear. A well-placed and covered mini USB port can be seen near the earphone socket. The bundled earphones are extremely comfortable to wear.
Features and Performance
The Clip D-Radio allows one-touch access to the FM radio, which is definitely a good thing. However, the reception while on my daily commute was so-so. Scanning through channels (in areas of good reception) is quick and painless. It has four slots for storing presets.
The point is; if I were to use this with a mobile phone that supports A2DP, in most cases the handset would have an in-built FM radio, so why would I need a second one? Still, the concept could have been a USP when combined with the BlueCON II and some device that doesn’t have a radio.
The OLED display comes in very handy for incoming calls as it shows the number very clearly. In case of a missed call, a notification will also appear. The device can also be set to vibrate and beep every time you’re getting a call and your handset isn’t close by, or happens to be in another room.
Now let’s get down to the nitty-gritties. The Clip D-Radio comes equipped with the BlueCore5 multimedia system that's specially designed to eliminate interference when taking a call. Trust me, it works splendidly. It also combines CSR's proprietary CVC technology for boosting performance. The clarity and range were superb. With the clip kept at full length of the wired earphone, the person on the other end didn’t miss a word. Or so she told me.
The headset supports the latest Bluetooth specification (v2.1+EDR) and is compatible with both A2DP and AVRCP profiles to enable connectivity, so you can easily activate and control your handset’s music player right from the Clip’s nav-pad. It had a good 10m range and I didn’t lose a beat within that area.
Although the earphones were quite comfortable and fit rather nicely, I was not too thrilled with the quality of sound, so I used my own. Further, the volume keys tend to be a little erratic and were not very responsive. There was also an issue with skipping tracks or playing and pausing tracks. It would take a second or so for the track to change after I hit the Skip button.
The battery life wasn't too hot either. On an average I got no more than 7 hours of usage with nonstop audio playback. While that's not bad, I expected more.
I don’t feel i.Tech’s Clip D-Radio is worth its street price of Rs 5250. It may have great range and voice clarity that’s better than some other headsets I’ve used or tested, but the bulky design is a downer and the average FM radio reception could well be a superfluous feature. So decide wisely.