Philips Streamium WAK3300 review: Philips Streamium WAK3300

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The Good Price; streaming audio functions; easy setup.

The Bad Screen; laggy menus; sound quality quite tinny.

The Bottom Line A great way to add a networked music station to your sleeping environment. The ease of setup will please novices and the alarm clock functionality is well integrated with the networked media features. If you want an affordable way to get your PC media collection next to you as you slumber, and you don't mind the annoying menus and average sound quality, look no further

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6.5 Overall

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The Philips Streamium WAK3300 is an additional unit to the £600 WACS7000 setup, but is also a standalone music-streaming system in itself. Beyond its functions as a bedside music gizmo, the WAK3300 is an alarm clock and radio. It's on sale for around £90.

This nifty alarm clock does what you'd expect it to do: it tells the time on a backlit display, it has an alarm -- either the radio, a buzzer or streaming music -- it has a snooze option, and an automatically recurring daily alarm. This kind of functionality is taken for granted for the most part, and the WAK3300 doesn't let us down with its performance of these rudimentary functions. It also offers a pleasant silvery design and a build quality that reflects the near-£100 price tag.

Setting up the little guy took about 30 seconds: a quick time and date confirmation first, then an automatic installation of the network features. Advanced configuration is actually fairly simple, but the quick start and full manual tutorials will assist technophobes.

The 'Philips Media Manager' software is supplied on a CD-ROM. It's a painlessly simple application that easily lets you make your MP3 collection available to the WAK3300 on your home network, be it wired or wireless. Encrypted networks are supported, using the up and down buttons to enter any required WEP or WPA access codes.

Sound quality, while quite tinny and heavy on treble, is fine for a system like this. You're not going to spend any considerable time listening to music from it -- we wouldn't recommend the WAK3300 as a primary music source -- but for wake-up tunes and background music as you get dressed, it'll be fine. There's a headphone socket too, presumably for listening in bed.

For those of you who like to fall asleep to some music or radio, a sleep timer will save you from disturbed snoozes. It can be set for up to two hours.

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