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Albatron WIDIO Wireless Audio System Review

Albatron WIDIO Wireless Audio System Review - PCSTATS
Abstract: The Albatron Widio Deluxe wireless audio receiver and transmitter allows users to listen to music at distances of up to 50m (164 feet) from the audio source.
 80% Rating:   
Filed under: Audio / Sound Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: Albatron Sep 07 2005   Max Page  
Home > Reviews > Audio / Sound > Albatron Widio

Sound Quality Maintained

Since the Albatron Widio advertises "pure CD quality audio without data compression," I made a point of testing it out with my beloved Grado's, as well as the Audio Technica headphones it ships with. The results of wireless audio vs. wired audio listening sessions illuminated a couple key aspects of what is effectively a 2.4 GHz DSSS (Direct Sequence Spread Spectrum) wireless headphone system.

The Widio knocks a dB or two off the volume of the source, but other than that there is scant else in the way of distortion or loss of range that I can hear. Officially, the specs list a 90 db S/N ratio, and frequency response of -1.2 dbr at 20Hz; -0.7 dbr at 20 kHz. Headphone output power ranges from 60mW at 16 ohm, to 35mW at 32 ohm.

What that translates to in english is excellent reproduction of the source audio at moderate-to-high volumes, and the introduction of minor amounts of distortion when the Widio receiver's amplifier is at its max - and I mean ear splitting loud. Of course, distortion is heavily dependent on the quality of the headphones plugged into the pack-of -cards-sized Widio receiver...

Though, on its own, it is reassuring to hear that the Widio is capable of keeping things clear at elevated volume levels, even if the Audio Technica ATH-EM7's headphones are pushed way beyond their design envelope.

In other words, expect the ATH-EM7's to crap out from excessive bass or excessive volume long before the Widio begins to distort the source audio coming through its Syncomm Synic IA6 chip.

One little tip to keep your tunes coming out of the Widio receiver as clean as possible is to check that when it is hooked up to a PC, the output volume is not too loud.Since there is volume control built into the Widio receiver, we found the best volume ranges were accomplished by keeping the source audio levels on the low side.

Audio output on stereo equipment doesn't vary much, so this little tip doesn't apply as it does when connecting the Widio to a PC sound card, or PC headphone jack.

Wireless Interference and Signal Strength?

Since the Albatron Widio essentially just transfers a 2.4 GHz signal from its transmitter to receiver, there isn't much in the way of set up. The transceiver needs only to have its left/right RCA audio input connected to the audio output of a device with either of the two cables included in the box. One cable allows you to connect the Widio to standard RCA left/right audio outputs. The other cable is set up for the more common mini-headphone audio output jack typically found on PC soundcards.

A 5V AC-adaptor powersource provides the transmitter with power, and if there are multiple Widio units in the same area, a channel selector allows each unit to function on its own carrier frequency of 2412MHz to 2472MHz.

There are 7 channels available, but Albatron recommend interspacing adjacent units (ie. channel 0, 2, 4, 6) rather than selecting sequential carrier frequencies. As the manual illustrates a situation with four units, it is difficult to say whether or not one could reliably use 7 Widio's in the same area without interference... but four certainly seems doable.

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Contents of Article: Albatron Widio
 Pg 1.  Albatron WIDIO Wireless Audio System Review
 Pg 2.  — Sound Quality Maintained
 Pg 3.  FM Radio and more

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