What Hi Fi Sound and Vision Mon, 20 Oct 2008, 2:00pm

Tivoli Networks Global

Tested at £495
60100
3

While it sounds good, we can find faults, which means we can’t wholeheartedly recommend you spend the money

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For

  • Impressive functionality and features
  • solid, refined and balanced sound

Against

  • Expensive
  • build should be better for the money
  • not convinced by button placement

We know what you're thinking – that's a lot for a radio. But this is far more than a run-of-the-mill radio.

The Tivoli Networks Internet Radio aims to offer not only functionality and features, but also a premium design matched with that all important sound quality.

Out of the box the Tivoli looks smart. There's not much to it, and the design is simple and stripped-down on the front. In fact, all the action is on the back of the unit, with a USB input for an MP3 player, connection for a second speaker (£100), aux input and a sub out.

Everything can be controlled from the credit card sized remote, with the only obvious control on the main unit sat on top.

Build quality could be better
This takes the form of a wheel-style volume, which also doubles as a mute button and power button – the two are slightly too close for comfort.

The menus are intuitive, but we're not entirely convinced by the build. Some of the machinery isn't quite spot on.

There are Internet, DAB and FM tuners, while there's also an online ‘portal' where you can make adjustments and set favourites, which will then appear on your radio, too.

This is all very nice but for £500, and with the slight doubts over the standard of build quality, we need the Tivoli Networks Radio to sound pretty special.

Fine sound quality
And it very nearly pulls it off. This is better than previous Internet radios we've heard – the likes of the Tangent Quattro II lack the overall refinement, tonal balance and full-bodied delivery by comparison.

But then, it is nearly three times the price. Yes, there are FM, DAB and Internet tuners, plus the added bonus of the portal, but, again, the Pure Evoke Flow delivers all this, and at a fraction of the price…

If this Tivoli was head and shoulders above the competition, while delivering faultless build and style, we could justify the radio to real audio purists. But there's just not the all-round quality here to justify spending near-on £500

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