Tivoli Audio PAL BT

The Good The Tivoli PAL BT retains the wonderful retro design, compact form factor, strong battery life, and excellent AM/FM radio of its predecessors, while adding Bluetooth compatibility. It offers surprisingly big sound for its size.

The Bad The Bluetooth performance (and overall sound quality) is decent but not good enough for a $300 speaker -- yes, it's overpriced.

The Bottom Line It's great that Tivoli added Bluetooth streaming to its great little PAL radio, but its $300 price tag is excessive.

Editors' Rating
  • Design 8.0
  • Features 7.0
  • Performance 7.0
7.0 Overall

Review

Retro Bluetooth radio doesn't come cheap

Tivoli Audio's PAL radio has been out for several years and while it's pretty pricey, it remains one of our favorite portable speakers. ("PAL" was allegedly an acronym for "Portable Audio Laboratory.")

Over time Tivoli has done little to change the PAL except to offer it in more colors -- and to cash in on the iPod/iPhone craze by dubbing the white one the "iPAL," which included a cable to hook up your mobile device. But now the company has finally added a wireless Bluetooth option to the PAL and its tabletop radio cousin, the Model One. Keeping things simple, the products are called the PAL BT ($299.99) and Model One BT ($259.99).

As far as I can tell, the 1.92-pound PAL BT is virtually identical to the standard PAL, both of which come in multiple color options. The one difference is that the knob that allows you to toggle among "off," "AM," and "FM" settings adds a fourth "BT" option -- that stands for Bluetooth, of course. Note that the AM and FM bands remain totally analog; Tivoli has not added support for digital HD Radio.

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Specs / Prices

  • Brand Tivoli Audio
  • Weight 30.72 oz
  • Type Speakers
  • Tuner Bands AM/FM
  • Technology nickel metal hydride
  • Recharge Time 3 hour(s)
  • Type none
  • Color glossy blue, white
See full specs
model glossy blue/white

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