Best Bathroom Radios (UK 2018)

Do you love listening to the radio in the shower or the bath? Lots of us enjoy listening to music or the news while in the bathroom, which explains why bathroom and shower radios are very popular.

Here’s a roundup of 5 of the best bathroom radios available in the UK in 2018. This list includes splash-proof shower radios as well as compact portable radios for the bathroom windowsill.

Best Bathroom Radios (UK 2018)

1. Sony ICF-S80 Splash Proof AM/FM Shower Radio

The Sony ICF-S80 is a carefully designed radio that is ideal for using in the bathroom or shower. It’s only an AM/FM radio and doesn’t have DAB, but one advantage of this is that the batteries last a lot longer than they would in a DAB radio (around 100 hours as opposed to around 10 hours).

Features

  • AM/FM radio
  • IPX4 splash-proof rating
  • 5 preset buttons
  • Takes 3 x C batteries
  • Clock
  • Countdown timer switches radio off after a programmed period of time
  • Hanging strap

Dimensions: 16 x 14 x 8 cm
Weight: 375 g excluding batteries

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Good reception
  • Easy to change the station using the preset buttons
  • Excellent battery life

Cons

  • No DAB radio
  • Sound quality is mediocre
  • Relatively expensive for an AM/FM radio

Summary

This radio is very easy to use and has great battery life. One nice feature is that it has a timer so you can program the radio to switch off automatically after your bath/shower. Read our full review of the Sony ICF-S80 here.

2. John Lewis Spectrum DAB Shower Radio

John Lewis Spectrum Shower Radio

The John Lewis Spectrum Shower Radio could be a good alternative to the Sony ICF-S80 reviewed above if you’re looking for a digital radio. Like the Sony ICF-S80, it’s splash-proof to IPX4 standard and has a hanging strap for hanging it over a shower.

Features

  • FM/DAB radio
  • Built-in rechargeable battery
  • IPX4 water resistance rating
  • Hanging strap
  • Dedicated preset buttons

Pros

  • Stylish and robust design
  • Convenient rechargeable battery
  • Good reception
  • Easy to access presets

Cons

  • Can be difficult to switch on and off

Summary

This is one of the best DAB bathroom radios on the market at the moment. Some people find this radio difficult to turn on and off due to its unusual on/off mechanism, but it should work fine if you read the instructions manual carefully.

The built-in battery should last around 12 hours before it needs to be recharged, which isn’t bad for a DAB radio but isn’t as good as the Sony ICF-S80 AM/FM radio reviewed above. For more information, see our full review of the John Lewis Spectrum Shower Radio here.

3. Roberts R9993 3-Band Portable Radio

The Roberts R9993, also known as the Classic 993, is an inexpensive portable LW/MW/FM radio that could make a good choice for the bathroom.

Features

  • LW/MW/FM radio
  • Power indicator
  • Carrying strap
  • Takes 4 x AA batteries

Dimensions: 20 x 13 x 5.5 cm
Weight: 420 g

Pros

  • Compact and will fit easily on a bathroom windowsill
  • Easy to use
  • Inexpensive
  • Generally good reception

Cons

  • Can be fiddly to tune
  • Doesn’t save presets
  • Not splash-proof

Summary

The Roberts R9993 is a very basic radio that doesn’t have any fancy features. However, it’s inexpensive and easy to use, making it a good choice if you want a straightforward and affordable radio for the bathroom. Keep in mind it doesn’t have DAB radio, so your choice of stations will be limited. Read our full review of the Roberts R9993 here.

4. Roberts Play

The Roberts Play is quite similar to the Roberts R9993, but it offers digital radio as well as FM. It’s more expensive than the R9993 but could be a good choice if you want a reliable portable DAB radio for the bathroom. One of the best things about this radio is that it has a built-in battery recharger so you can use it with the same set of rechargeable batteries.

Features

  • FM/DAB/DAB+ radio
  • Saves 10 preset stations
  • Built-in battery charger
  • Takes 4 x AA batteries

Dimensions: 16 x 10.5 x 3.5 cm
Weight: 392 g

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Clear sound quality
  • Small and compact design—great for a bathroom windowsill
  • Built-in battery charger
  • Dedicated preset buttons

Cons

  • Sounds a bit thin
  • Relatively expensive
  • Not splash-proof

Summary

The Roberts Play is quite popular as a bathroom radio. It’s not splash-proof, so you would need to use it on a windowsill or other dry place. This radio is easy to use and has a useful built-in battery charger, though the sound is quite thin and it’s fairly expensive for a basic DAB radio. Read our full review of the Roberts Play here.

5. Duronic Hybrid Radio

The Duronic Hybrid is an inexpensive and compact AM/FM radio that can be charged by solar power, winding it up or by charging it via a USB cable. This radio isn’t waterproof but is quite robust and should withstand some exposure to moisture.

Features

  • AM/FM radio
  • 3 charging methods: Solar, hand crank, USB
  • Built-in rechargeable battery
  • Extendable aerial

Dimensions: 13 x 7.3 x 4.1 cm
Weight: 203 g

Pros

  • Doesn’t need batteries
  • Compact yet robust design
  • Cute and cheerful red design
  • Can charge via solar when on a bathroom windowsill

Cons

  • Not splash-proof
  • Not great sound quality for music

Summary

If you’re looking for a radio that won’t need the batteries changing or recharging all the time, the Duronic Hybrid is perfect. Many people find that it can stay charged just from picking up sunshine on a bathroom windowsill. If that fails, you can simply wind the hand crank for a while. It’s a very compact and convenient radio which will let you save money on electricity and batteries. Read our full review of the Duronic Hybrid here.

 

Choosing a Bathroom Radio

When choosing a radio for the bathroom you can either opt to go for a splash-proof radio that you will be able to use in the shower, or a regular portable radio that you can place somewhere dry such as the windowsill.

Lots of people use a regular radio in the bathroom, and this should be fine as long as you don’t get it wet and the level of humidity in your bathroom isn’t too high. The advantage of using a normal radio in the bathroom is that regular radios normally have better sound quality than shower radios, which can be very tinny.

Specially designed shower radios are water resistant and usually have special features such as hangers and suction cups for attaching them to the shower wall.

Here are a few things to consider when choosing a bathroom radio:

  • Splash-proof – If you want to make sure that a radio is splash-proof, look for an IPX4 water resistance rating. This means it can withstand water from a spray nozzle with a shield for 10 minutes or without a shield for 5 minutes. Read about IP codes on Wikipedia here for more info.
  • AM/FM or FM/DAB – Some of the radios reviewed here are analogue with AM/FM radio while others are digital with FM and DAB radio. There are pros and cons to each. AM/FM radios tend to last longer on batteries, which is useful as you won’t want to plug anything into the mains in the bathroom. On the other hand, a DAB radio will give you a larger choice of stations to listen to.
  • Batteries – The radios reviewed here offer take different kinds of batteries. Some have built-in rechargeable batteries which is convenient as you don’t need to worry about replacing batteries or charging them separately. Others take C or AA batteries. The Roberts Play features a built-in battery charger which is very useful.
  • Size and design – If you want a radio for the bathroom windowsill you will need to check its dimensions carefully to make sure it’s not too big. The Roberts R9993, Roberts Play and Duronic Hybrid are all a good size for a windowsill. If you’re looking to buy a radio to use inside the shower yourself, you might want to choose one with a hanging strap so you can hang it around the shower. Consider the size and design of your shower when choosing a radio.

Conclusion

If we had to choose just one of these radios to recommend it would be the Sony ICF-S80 Splash Proof AM/FM Shower Radio. It’s very easy to use and has excellent battery life. It makes a particularly good choice if you’re looking for something to use in the shower itself since it’s splash-proof and has a hanging strap.

If you want a radio for the bathroom windowsill rather than the shower, we’d recommend the Roberts R9993. It’s affordable, reliable, easy to use and has a compact size.

For some more options, see our reviews of the best shower radios.

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