There’s no shortage of audio options on offer, probably more than I’d expect to find in a car this size. The Radio is limited to analogue FM and MW stations, with no DAB digital radio on the menu. You also get a CD player that can playback MP3 files, meaning that you can squeeze a decent size music library on a single disc.
Things get more interesting when you pull down the flap located in front of the gear stick though. Here you’ll find an analogue AUX input for pumping sound from pretty much anything through the in-car system, but far more useful is the USB port. You can plug in any USB key here and stream MP3 and WMA files, but unlike using the analogue AUX input, you can control all the playback through the in-car system.
You can also hook an iPod up to the USB port – you can then playback your music by artist, album, playlist etc. Unfortunately I found that navigating an iPod through the Clio’s entertainment system was painfully slow and soon gave up in favour of a USB key, which worked far better.
You can also playback music via a Bluetooth device using A2DP. Configuration is simple, and once I’d connected my iPhone up for phone calls, it instantly appeared as an audio source as well. When I selected my iPhone, it instantly started streaming my tracks, but I had no control over the music via the car’s controls – I couldn’t skip forward or backwards through the track list. Luckily this proved to be an issue with the iPhone and not the system in the car, since when I hooked up the Samsung YP-R1, I was able to control my music playback.
Sound quality is surprisingly good, with decent levels of clarity, and enough bass to satisfy most tastes, without rattling the windows. There’s little sign of distortion when the volume levels are pushed high either. Sound was pretty consistent regardless of the source, and even music streamed over Bluetooth sounded absolutely fine.
Not so impressive is the navigation of the entertainment system. Despite there being a large, full colour LCD screen, all navigation menus are in monochrome, and only give you three lines of data. It’s almost as if the entertainment navigation was designed for a smaller display and has just been rolled over onto the large TomTom screen – which of course is altogether possible.
There’s a full set of audio controls on the steering column – here you’ll find volume controls, a mute button, an audio source button and a jog dial for skipping forwards and backwards through your track list.
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