Microlab FC530U: multimedia acoustics with the musical centre function

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Recently Microlab Electronics has widened the product range of the 2.1 systems with the incorporated USB, SD readers and FM tuner. One of these novelties is now in our test lab. Please meet Microlab FC530U
Design and construction.
The model is of classic design taking into account non typical features like interface and antenna. In general the model is a typical 2+1 of the middle price segment. Nevertheless the producer has tried to create it modern with the hi-fi features.

The satellite bodies made of MDF wood are of usual rectangular form with the additional vinyl wooden styled decoration on the laterals. Safe grids of the acoustic tissue partly cover the front panel of the body. This solution comes from the most expensive models and allows direct association with modern product range.

The satellites are single side-band with one 2.5" rubber supported speaker. There is also a HF emitter imitation on the front.
Microlab is highlighting that the new head were implemented with the help of world-famous sound engineer Mr. Peter Larsen. His efforts have resulted into increasing of the sound quality for the broad-band speakers. So the top frequencies are inspiring.  
In general the quality of satellites assembly is on the high level. There is a little doubt on wire length which is no more than 1,5 meters. In case of placing the speakers on the table bottom you will have no argues but it is hard to locate them too far from each other.
Subwoofer is of similar style.

Its body made of MDF is more close to the cubic form. Like the satellites it has vinyl wooden decorated overlays. Low frequency 5.25" speaker installed in the front is covered with the black grid. The phase inverter tube is on the back panel. Some of you may argue this decision but we vote for. There is a restriction of no placing the woofer closely to the wall but in any case you will have to input all the wires to the back. As an advantage you have no holes on the side panels and on the front.

Among the benefits is the presence of two independent inputs switched by the electronic changer. One of them is adapted for the RCA connectors and the other is 3.5 mm mini-jack. The booster cooler is also outputted to the back panel closer to the telescopic antenna. We will discuss this feature below.

On the front side there is a control panel with the USB input, SD slot and six press-buttons. The buttons allow switching on/off, selecting the input and mode, adjusting the volume, starting the tracks from the flashcard and switching them, searching the FM for the stations. In general these functions are necessary when remote controller is discharged or broken.
Remote controller is made of usual plastics with the rubber buttons and powered by finger-type batteries. The buttons are informative and easy to press.

Functionality of the controller is a little bit wider than the control panel. It becomes essentially when you are preparing to regulate high and low frequencies. As a common practice digital control panel is combined with the remote controller.

In any case according to our point the construction and design of the FC530U is more than reliable. It would be also great to have a kind of digital screen on the front panel but we can imagine the followed raising of the cost so the quality/price ratio is sufficiently high.
Operation and impressions.
As we are considering not usual 2+1 system, the initial tests were holded on bonus functions and later on the traditional audition. It is clear that the player is rather primitive because of the lack of information while the playback. But electronic compound is trusty.
The system easily defined and scanned 3 different types of the flash cards being occasionally selected. The player is targeted on the mp3 format but playing back the other ones like wav and wma also faces no problems. There are absolutely no artifacts when playing and the quality is as perfect as when using the standard input. The only disputable feature is the quiet clicking sound while using the functions. From the other hand such clicking is common even for some types of the models from the high segment.
The second positive complement is incorporated radio. It works perfectly allowing to configure the stations even being indoor.
As for the sound, FC530U is perfect. Sabwoofer is inspiring with the deep and dynamical bass. Even at the highest volume there are no sound artifacts: tinklers or non-linear distortions. The volume is enough for the middle-sized room. There are no special preferences for any style.

We found Microlab FC530U very nice. For this price the customer is able to get the perfect quality, nice exterior and good sound. As we mentioned there are several bonuses like remote control, FM radio, SDcard- and USB-flash input. Of course the choice here depends on the individual needs but we believe that some of these bonuses may influence the choice, taking into account low added price.