Pure Highway 400 In-Car DAB Adapter Review

The Pure Highway 400 adapter is intended to offer an easy way to get DAB radio in your car. It can be used to effectively convert an FM car stereo into a digital radio. To use the adapter, you need to attach an antenna to the windscreen of your car, so it’s not quite as simple as “plug and play”. However, it’s a relatively straightforward and inexpensive way to get digital radio in your car. Let’s take a closer look…

Features

  • DAB/DAB+ and FM radio receiver
  • Bluetooth for streaming music from a smartphone
  • You can save songs you like to Spotify by pressing the ‘Go’ button
  • Takes 2 AAA batteries (included)

Installation

The Pure Highway 400 consists of three main parts: the receiver which you place inside the windscreen, and the antenna which is placed externally on the windshield, and finally wireless controller which is attached to the dashboard.

To install the Pure Highway 400 in your car, you will need a safe and secure place to attach the receiver and antenna, as well as a 12V power source or a USB power point. The antenna needs to be placed on the windshield to get a good reception. The receiver connects to the car stereo via an aux cable. This means your car stereo will need to have an aux input to use this adapter.

This DAB adapter is easy to install, but you can pay to get a professional from somewhere like Halfords to install one for you if you’re unsure about how to do it.

This video from Pure shows how to install the Highway 400:

Performance and use

The sound quality depends on the quality of your car’s speakers, but if they are high-quality, the Pure Highway 400 is capable of producing a great sound, with more detail than you’d get from FM, provided you have a good DAB signal.

Connecting the adapter to Bluetooth is easy, and if you have an iPhone you can speak to Siri and have her answers come through the car speakers.

Pros

  • Clear sound quality—better than on FM radio
  • Easy to pair with Bluetooth
  • Usually easy to install, and doesn’t require you to use any tools
  • The batteries for the controller are expected to last a whole year
  • Looks smart
  • Small and compact

Cons

  • Attaching the antenna to your windscreen can be fiddly depending on the design of your car
  • You can’t use Bluetooth for phone calls
  • Reception isn’t as good as on most OEM-fitted DAB car radios
  • Dashcams can interfere with the signal

Verdict

The Pure Highway 400 is one of the best DAB/DAB+ car adapters available in 2017. It’s relatively easy to fit, looks smart and offers better sound quality than you’d get from FM. However, the reception isn’t as strong as it could be, and the adapter is fairly expensive.

Alternative adapters to consider

Pure produce another DAB car radio adapter, the Highway 600, which is more expensive than the Highway 400 but has extra features such as allowing you to take hands-free calls using Bluetooth. For some more affordable adapters to consider, check out our roundup of the best plug-and-play DAB car radio adapters.

Alternatives to using an adapter

One alternative way to get DAB radio in your car is to use a pocket DAB radio and either listen with headphones or connect it to your car stereo via an aux cable. It will be harder (and less safe) to change the station or while driving with a pocket DAB radio, but it could be a good option if you only want to listen to one station anyway.

For a more detailed overview of the pros and cons of DAB car radio adapters and a look at some of the different alternatives, read this article: Should You Get a DAB Car Radio Adapter?

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