Gadgets and Gizmos (India) - - BEST BUYS - BY NANDAGOPAL RAJAN

Mu­sic is al­ways a mat­ter of per­sonal pref­er­ence. While some like their mu­sic loud, oth­ers like it soft. Though noth­ing gets as per­sonal as en­joy­ing mu­sic on an iPod or cell phones, per­haps lis­ten­ing to songs while driv­ing is not far be­hind. While it can be per­sonal to a cer­tain level while free­ing you from the tan­gles of head­phones wires, it can also be equally en­joy­able to oth­ers in the car. A look at mid-level in-car en­ter­tain­ment op­tions.


SONY XPLOD XAV-72BT Price: 32, 990`

The XAV-72BT comes with a 7-inch touch panel mon­i­tor and has a host of top-end fea­tures like Blue­tooth, SensMe and ZAPPIN. The re­ceiver can give 4.1 chan­nel out­put with 52W per speaker, pretty pow­er­ful for a car au­dio sys­tem. The sys­tem has 18 FM and 12 AM pre­set sta­tions and comes with tun­ing mem­ory so that you don’t have to search for your favourite sta­tions ev­ery time. SenseMe lets you cre­ate playlists based on tempo and mood. The built-in screen has a 17:9 Mon­i­tor As­pect Ra­tio and is good enough for DVD/VCD/CD play­back. The unit can also con­trol a USB source or iPod.

PIONEER AVH-P3350BT Price: 24,990 `

This unit from Pioneer might have a smaller 5.8-inch widescreen touch dis­play, but it still packs a punch. It scores over the oth­ers by be­ing able to play from a SD/SDHC Mem­ory Card Slot, along with hav­ing USB di­rect con­trol for iPod/iPhone as well as Blue­tooth. While some of its ri­vals can sup­port wall pa­pers, this one can be­come a full-fledged dig­i­tal photo frame with colour cus­tomi­sa­tion from the head unit. It can also play CD-R/RW, DVD-R/RW, which the other play­ers will vroom away from. Pow­ered by Su­per­tuner IIID, the unit can store 24 sta­tions with six pre­sets. The built-in am­pli­fier can power four 50W speak­ers and sup­ports sub-woofer con­trol.

JVC KW-AVX846 Price: 29,990 ` This DVD/CD/USB re­ceiver comes with Blue­tooth and mo­tion sen­sor tech­nol­ogy and has a 7-inch widescreen touch panel mon­i­tor. With 50W x 4 out­put, the unit comes with two-way con­trol for iPod/iPhone as well as an ex­ter­nal mode for the same. The sound is among the best in the class with Dolby Dig­i­tal and 3-Band Para­met­ric iEQ. The head unit can dis­play wall­pa­pers too as it is com­pat­i­ble with JPEG along with MPEG 1, 2, WAV, MP3, WMA. There is a very handy re­mote to con­trol the sys­tem, which in­ci­den­tally comes ready for a steer­ing wheel re­mote, in case you car has one.



Price: 12,990


Among CD play­ers, this is un­doubt­edly the best looker in town and strangely this could be the rea­son why it is among the most pop­u­lar car au­dio op­tions in In­dia. But that doesn't mean the sound is not up to the mark, not at all. The unit comes with EQ3 Stage2 (3Band Equaliser/7 Modes) and when cou­pled with four 52W speak­ers, you have a real mean ma­chine. The unit plays MP3, WMA and AAC and comes decked with front USB, iPod con­trol, ZAPPIN and quick­browZer tech­nolo­gies.You can also shuf­fle mu­sic within gen­res, al­bum, artist and playlists.

PIONEER FH-P6050UB Price: 10,749 `

This unit from Pioneer is made for the iPod/iPhone fan. Along with USB con­trol for the de­vices, this is among the few units that can play iTunes AAC files along with the reg­u­lar MP3 and WMA. The Ad­vanced Sound Re­triever and 7-Band Graphic EQ make sure you don’t get a dis­torted play­back of your favourite mu­sic. There is best sta­tion mem­ory and 24 ra­dio sta­tions can be stored with six pre­sets. The three-band loud­ness con­trol and bass boost gives the sound that lit­tle bit ex­tra you might yearn for at times. The unit is Blue­tooth ready, but you will have to spend on an adapter to get this fea­ture go­ing.


Price: 16,900


This Dou­ble-DIN USB/CD Re­ceiver sys­tem comes with Blue­tooth wire­less tech­nol­ogy and front AUX. With 50W x 4 out­put, the au­dio player sup­ports 3-Band Para­met­ric iEQ and two-way con­trol for iPod/iPhone. But it has to be the Blue­tooth func­tions that set this one apart. Along with Hands-free calls, it sup­ports phone book ac­cess and trans­fer, au­dio stream­ing and even two phone switch­ing over Blue­tooth. A good bet if you like to talk and drive. There is also a three-pat­tern loud­ness con­trol if you like to en­ter­tain peo­ple on the road as you drive along. The unit is com­pat­i­ble with MP3/WMA/WAV3.

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