Sony XDR-P1DBP Pocket Radio Review

Summary:
Small, sturdy and powerful, the Sony XDR-P1DBP is a great handheld radio.

Buy it online:
£59.89 on Amazon.co.uk

This tiny Sony radio is about the size of a mobile phone, but packs a punch in terms of power and features.  It looks like a classic 1970s/80s Sony radio, but picks up DAB and DAB+ stations as well as FM. Let’s look at the Sony XDR-P1DBP in more detail.

Features

  • DAB/DAB+/FM radio
  • USB cable for recharging
  • Built-in lithium ion battery
  • FM with RDS, which displays the FM station on the LCD display
  • Save up to 20 preset stations

Dimensions: 11.5 cm wide x 5.7 cm high x 2.4 cm thick
Weight: 168 g

Pros

  • Very small—about the size of a deck of cards
  • Made from quality, durable materials
  • Internal speaker is crisp and clear, but lacking in bass
  • Easy to use with an intuitive design
  • Long battery life (up to 20 hours)
  • Powerful speaker given its size
  • FM RDS, so you know which FM station you’re listening to
  • USB charging is very convenient

Cons

  • DAB reception can be poor in some areas
  • Using headphones with a short cable impairs the radio reception
  • Buttons are quite small and fiddly
  • Battery can’t be replaced
  • Volume is quiet when using headphones

Performance and use

After fully charging the built-in battery using the USB lead provided, it offers up to 15 hours of playback through the speaker or 20 hours through headphones, though the battery life will decrease over time. This is impressive, as most pocket DAB radios will only last 10 hours or so.

The radio is surprisingly powerful for its size—it sounds like it should be much bigger. As you’d expect, the small mono speaker doesn’t have much bass, but nevertheless the sound quality is impressive.

The DAB radio tunes quickly, and will pick up a lot of stations in most parts of the country. In FM mode, the radio has RDS for displaying the station name, which is helpful in places like London where there are a lot of stations.

Verdict

This radio is more expensive than most pocket DAB radios, but you’re paying for quality and reliability. I don’t know what kind of plastic Sony use, but the construction feels much sturdier than that of cheaper pocket radios.

You’ll probably be amazed at how small the radio is, and at how much power it packs into such a small package. It’s easily small enough to fit in your pocket and listen to with headphones, but is also powerful enough to be used around the house.

If you want something small, sturdy and powerful, the Sony XDR-P1DBP is ideal. The only drawback is that you can’t replace the battery, so you might need to buy a new radio when if the battery life deteriorates a lot over time.

Similar radios

If you don’t need something as small as the Sony XDR-P1DBP Pocket Radio, you might be interested in the 1byone Portable DAB Radio. It’s about twice as big, but has Bluetooth so you can stream music from your phone. Furthermore, it costs about half the price of the Sony radio.

Another similar radio is the Roberts Radio Play10. It has very similar features to the Sony XDR-P1DBP, and is a bit cheaper.

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