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2006 Holiday Gift Guide: Slim Devices Squeezebox

Squeezebox

The newest Squeezebox has a bright LED screen along with a nice, metallic console, and is the perfect gift for any audiophile. Hook this thing up to a stereo system using it’s digital outputs, and you are in for a treat. The Squeezebox supports just about any format out there (but not iTunes DRM), and can even stream from services like Rhapsody. There are third-party plug-ins that let you change fonts, and even use the display as a caller ID. Our favorite part, though, is the fact that it can stream Internet radio without needed a PC to be powered on.

Price: $299 (Compare Prices)


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Sonos System Software 2.0 Connects Rhapsody Without PC

sonos2.2Sonos, Inc. has updated its service and released its system software version 2.0. Teamed up with RealNetworks’ Rhapsody web service, the new version enables a direct link with millions of songs from all genres and thousands of radio stations without the need of an installed application or computer.

Sonos allows you this access by means of their wireless controller - see our Sonos review on The Bleeding Edge. Simply plug and play the controller in any of up to 32 rooms in your home or office, and you get tunes with the aid of a 3.5-inch color LCD screen, scroll wheel, and a button. Choose the same music for each room, or have blues in the bedroom and classical in the bathroom. You can even download music that has been taking up all that valuable space on your PC.

The controller permits you to pick your fave artist and Rhapsody can build your very own commercial-free radio station that will include other artists from the same music genre. Select from their top 100 song charts or be your own jock. This 2.0 upgrade allows you to update daily with audible content or podcasts or choose a randomized shuffle mode. Also featured is improved multinational Internet radio and alarm functionality, as well as French, Italian, and Spanish language support.

Sonos is available at a whopping price of $999.99, but think of it as a way of getting rid of obnoxious DJ’s, endless commercials, and hunting in vain for that track that got lost somewhere in the bowels of your PC. Can musical life get any better? Sure it can. Rhapsody is offering a 30-day free trial of its service with your new Sonos.

Read More | Sonos 2.0 Release

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