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June 19, 2008

Tritton AxVisor BT Car Kit

Remember what a thrill it was when you could first ride your bike without any hands? Driving a car is a different matter, and it’s a good idea to keep both hands on the wheel at all times. It gives me the shivers when I see a young mother with a car full of kids yakking on the phone. Fortunately, in some states it is against the law to talk on a cell phone (or text) while driving. This should be a matter of common sense.

I don’t know about you, but I find those over the ear headsets a bit uncomfortable after a while. Some actually hurt my ear. A full set of headphones is illegal. I have somewhat successfully used a GPS device with built-in Bluetooth for receiving and transmitting phone calls while driving. But the sound quality seems lacking and difficult to hear over road noise sometimes.

Having just returned from a month on the road covering several states, thousands of miles, and a big gas bill ($5.09 in California for regular), I am pleased to report that I was able to test the new AXVisor Bluetooth car kit thoroughly, and I am happy to be able to give it a high recommendation.

One of my major beefs with Bluetooth is that it can be frustrating to get devices connected and shaking hands properly. This was not the case with AxVisor. It’s simply a matter of making your phone discoverable, initiating a search, and the AxVisor is immediately recognized.

Once the pairing has been established, it remains until deactivated. And, listen to this. If you leave the AxVisor on, when you start your car engine, it will automatically sense the vibration and reconnect to your phone. Very cool. If you want to reconnect with the engine off, just push the big phone button once, and it will reconnect. I like this friendly little car kitten.

I recommend that you simply leave the device on all the time for automatic Bluetooth connections. You get 15 hours of talk time and 400 hours of standby between charges, so you can afford to leave it switched on. I’m not sure how long it would take to complete a full charge. I never had to charge it for more than an hour or so.

When you get an incoming call, it rings, and you just tap the big phone button on the front. The caller’s ID information will be displayed. If you don’t want to talk to the calling party, you can hold the big phone multi-function button in until “call rejected” appears on the screen.

If you want to call back the last party who called you, just tap the big phone button.

Sound quality is remarkably good considering the small speaker. It uses enhanced DSP echo and noise cancellation to improve the sound on both ends of the transmission. Amazingly, this compact device has dual microphones. However, on the highway, I found myself wishing for more volume to overcome road noise.

This device also features call waiting, mute, and three-party calling. I particularly appreciate the mute and hold features, which not all car kits have. Sometimes it’s nice to be able to discuss something with your passenger without the calling party hearing, and this kit will accommodate that.

I also appreciate its black case, sleek design, and stylish silver band. It has a slanted step design with the display screen on the incline. The lower half is the big phone button, and the upper half is the speaker.

It has a small 2 x 4.75 inch footprint with a springy metal clip for attaching to your visor. You can put it on the top or bottom of the visor. The display will automatically orient itself accordingly for convenient driver viewing-- another very cool feature. If you prefer to set it on the dash, it has four, non-skid rubber pads.

The controls are efficient and simple. I already alluded to the big, multi-functional phone button on the front. On one side is a slider power switch. On the other side is a volume +/- control and a mute/hold button.

In the box, you get a USB cable for charging and an AC charger. You would think for the price they could have thrown in a DC car charger. The visor mounting clip is detachable. A printed manual also comes with it.

If I had to come up with a complaint, it might be that it has no memory, and you cannot download your contacts into it. But that’s no big deal because they are already in your phone anyway. I suppose another complaint might be that you cannot listen to Bluetooth stereo music with it, and you can’t watch movies on the screen either. Maybe it could offer a 3.5 mm jack for connecting MP3 players? Oh well. It’s a high quality car kit, and that’s all it’s supposed to be. If the truth be known, I found at highway speeds, I wished for more volume that just wasn’t there.

AxVisor seems to be competitively priced with a suggested retail price of $99, but you may do better by shopping around. Visit the developer’s Website at www.trittonusa.com. I recommend it for your consideration, and if you don’t already have a car kit, get one. If you have one already, use it.

Keep connected!

Posted by conradb212 at June 19, 2008 12:46 AM