Taskbar Review : Radium, a slim, menu bar based internet radio playerNo doubt like most I like some music in the background whilst I go about my daily business. This means I normally resort to firing of iTunes and selecting a radio station from there but it seems just a little bit big and cumbersome to have such a huge program lying in the background doing not a lot.

Enter Radium, which I confess I only recently found out about in the Freelance Mac App Bundle we are doing on our main front-page so I decided to give it a go

The application site itself is 11 MB but can be slimmed down to just over 8 MB (thank you Xslimmer).

Radium1 Review : Radium, a slim, menu bar based internet radio player

As you can see from the first running of the application you get a nice little intro box telling you the basics of how to use Radium.  Clicking okay dismisses the box and leaves you with a nice icon in the menubar.

All the stairs to find one of our listening to radio stations we typed in BBC radio two and after a few moments a list appears and there it was. Radio two isn’t available on iTunes which in our books already gives this application some advantage over iTunes.

If you aren’t sure that you are turned into the right radio station Radium provides a link to that station’s website you can double check you are hitting the right radio station. For example planet Rock came up with several stations but was easily located by hitting and testing some of the links.  Speaking of links it’s a doddle to share them with others via Facebook, twitter etc.

Radium2 Review : Radium, a slim, menu bar based internet radio player
Sharing a link with Radium

Connecting to streams isn’t as instant as via iTunes so it doesn’t really make for a great radio flicking application but nonetheless the search results are impressive.

There are some other great features. You can add custom radio stations and use keyboard shortcuts. You can tweak some of the same settings by choosing from a predefined selection in the instant equaliser option.

The only real downside to this application could be the price. At $24.95 or £15.90 you might immediately think that this is an expensive application. However, compared to subscription services, Radium soon proves to be cheaper.

It’s not quite made are EssentialMac. essential apps list yet but that’s only due to not having tested the application enough. So stay tuned for an update.

As always, with all our reviews, a copy of the review has been sent to the developers and should we get any replies or updates we will post them here.

Essential Mac recommended!

Radium 2.8.1 has now been released with the following updates.

  • Accessibility
    • Full support for Universal Access (VoiceOver, etc.)
  • Fixes
    • Fixes for upcoming Lion release
    • Station search speedups
    • Fixed computer sleep issue
    • Minor UI tweaks

Update – A deserved well done.

For what is a relatively cheap program you would normally think that your support options are fairly limited however a great big thank you has to go out to the developers of this program for helping me with an issue with one of the radio streams that I listen to on a daily basis.

It may be just one stream out of the many thousands they have on their lists but they did go out of their way to help me with the issue that I was having and I’m glad to report that it wasn’t an issue with the software but more to do with the stream being changed on the broadcasters websites.

It’s very easy in the age of the Internet to troll and give and feedback so, for once, I wanted to post a happy dealing with an application developer.   Thank you CatPig

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