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      22.03.2001 07:55

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      Aiwa's HS-GS292 is the latest in the line of mid range "walkman" clones that offers a "multi sound processor" and no tuner. Apart from a redesigned casing with the processor selector being moved elsewhere on the cassette door, the unit is identical to the fore runner the HS-GS282. The silver and grey casing shows marks and scratches very easily (lets have black models like we used to have) which quickly spoils the look of the unit. Since the early 90's, there have been a steady decrease in the build quality of their personal stereos, which means they are more prone to damage and mechanical breakdown. With the new models coming out as frequesnt as they do, it will be near impossible to get them repaired, so, buy a new one. The build quality of the earphones are better but could be improoved but this is again down to replacement as before. Ever tried to resolder a new plug onto an Aiwa cable? I have and it's not the easiet of things I can tell you. Then again, that's the idea of the manufacteurer. Sound quality is good and exceeds anything else I've heard, as long as you keep with the Aiwa inner ear phones. Better than Sony, Panasonic and others. The "multi sound processor" is a glorified, preset graphic equaliser with "classic" (or "flat", eq off), "Pop" (top and bottom end tone boosted), "Rock" (middle and bass boost) and "Jazz" (top and middle cut, bass boosted further than "Rock"). The worst thing you can do is to trust the belt clips supplied with any of aiwa's personal stereo's. The small, plastic screw supplied for fixing it to the body is both too short and the thread pitch is too shallow. To summerise:- sounds good but poor build quality.

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