DAB pioneer Pure presses on with its mission to get digital radio into every area of your life. Next stop: the car
Want crystal-clear digital radio in your motor, but don't want to rip out your existing audio system? Pure thinks it has the answer: a windscreen-mounted box called the Highway that streams DAB to your radio over FM.
Like a sat-nav device, you'll need to sucker the Highway onto your windscreen. It receives the DAB signal through a strip aerial that again needs to be attached to your screen. If you're already using sat-nav and driving anything smaller than a Porsche Cayenne, be aware that adding this second device might eat up a little too much windshield real estate.
Also like a sat-nav, you can detach it when parked up. There are batteries on board, but most of the time you'll be running the Highway from your car's power socket. It can also double up as a streaming device for an MP3 player via a 3.5mm jack, but with no Bluetooth this can all result in some messy cabling issues.
You're listening to Radio Highway...
Rest assured, from now on it's all good. Once up and running, the Highway rapidly searches for available DAB stations and a free FM slot. It then tells your radio which frequency to tune to, even appearing in RDS text as 'Pure DAB'. It locks on to the digital signal quickly.
Hanging on to that FM signal can be trickier, but if another station does start muscling in a single press of the QuickScan button rapidly finds the next free slot. Sound quality is, as you'd expect from Pure, excellent.
Pause and rewind
Being able to use the Highway as an FM MP3 streamer is a great idea, the sort of thing you'd need to pay five times as much for in a sat-nav. You can pause and rewind DAB broadcasts too – though it's best to do this during your tea-break at the service station.
If you keep your MP3s on a mobile phone, you might want to hold off from a purchase in hope of a less tangletastic Bluetooth version. But for the rest of us this is a smart little gadget, very well executed and at a bargain price too.
Pure Digital Highway review
A genuinely innovative gizmo that brings great quality digital radio to your wheels for little outlay