Best DAB Radios with Bluetooth (UK 2018)

The technology behind Bluetooth was developed in 1989, but it’s only become common in radios in the last few years. Bluetooth is very useful as it lets you connect your radio with other devices such as your phone, tablet and laptop so you can listen to music, online radio, audiobooks and podcasts through your radio’s speakers.

Read on for reviews of the best Bluetooth DAB radios on the market plus some information about how Bluetooth radios work.

Best DAB Radios with Bluetooth in the UK (2018)

After researching the market, we’ve picked out 10 of the best DAB radios with Bluetooth available in the UK in 2018. We hope these reviews help you choose the right radio for you.

1. Pure Evoke H3

The Pure Evoke H3 is one of the newest additions to Pure’s Evoke range of digital radios. It’s a very stylish radio with a real wood finish and a minimalistic design.

Features

  • FM/DAB/DAB+ radio
  • Colour screen
  • Dual alarm clock
  • Kitchen and sleep timers
  • 3-year manufacturer’s warranty available
  • Can be made portable with the ChargePAK B1 battery pack (not included)
  • Saves 40 preset stations

Dimensions: 18 x 11.5 x 11 cm
Weight: 939 g

Pros

  • Good sound quality for the size
  • Strong DAB radio signal
  • Stylish design
  • Alarm clock works well

Cons

  • Battery pack costs extra (and is expensive)
  • Relatively expensive

Summary

The Pure Evoke H3 is an attractive and well made radio from a trusted British brand. It’s worth noting that the battery pack isn’t included, and buying it as an add-on will significantly increase the overall price. Overall, this is one of the best Bluetooth DAB radios on the market. Read our full review of the Pure Evoke H3 here.

2. Majority Little Shelford

The Majority Little Shelford is a very affordable and compact DAB radio with Bluetooth. It’s one of the cheapest Bluetooth radios on the market and performs well for the price. Despite being cheap, it has a stylish retro design and looks great.

Features

  • FM/DAB/DAB+ radio
  • Dual alarm clock with snooze
  • Sleep timer
  • Mains or battery-powered (4 x AA)
  • Headphone jack

Dimensions: 17 x 13.5 x 13 cm
Weight: 1.5 kg

Pros

  • Good value for money
  • Good sound quality for the price
  • Easy to use
  • Clear instructions manual
  • Easy to carry around

Cons

  • Handle can’t be folded down
  • Warranty only available if you leave a review online

Summary

The Little Shelford offers great value for money. While it doesn’t have the highest build quality and may not last forever, it’s perfect if you want a cheap, compact and stylish DAB radio with Bluetooth.

3. AZATOM Multiplex

The AZATOM Multiplex D1 is a feature-packed portable FM/DAB/DAB+ radio that offers a great range of features for the price.

Features

  • Stereo speakers
  • USB charging point to recharge your phone, MP3 player or other device.
  • Internal rechargeable battery which lasts up to 10 hours
  • Headphone jack
  • Alarm clock

Pros

  • Built-in battery is more convenient than buying batteries separately
  • Decent battery life
  • Good value for money
  • Decent sound for the price

Cons

  • No remote control
  • Build quality isn’t very high—it’s unlikely to last a long time

Summary

While AZATOM may not be the best-known brand in the radio industry, the Multiplex D1 is one of the best value portable DAB radios with Bluetooth.  The build quality isn’t especially high, so it’s unlikely this radio will last a long time. Read our full review of the AZATOM Multiplex here.

4. Majority Oakington

The Majority Oakington is a complete sound system with radio, Bluetooth, a CD player and stereo speakers. Like the Majority Little Shelford reviewed above, it offers great value for money and packs in a lot of features for the price.

Features

  • FM/DAB/DAB+ radio
  • CD player
  • Stereo sound
  • Alarm clock
  • Sleep function
  • USB port for charging devices and playing MP3s
  • Remote control
  • Aux-in port

Dimensions: 40 x 20 x 13 cm
Weight: 1.2 kg

Pros

  • Good value for money
  • Attractive design
  • Lots of features
  • Nice sound quality

Cons

  • Some people have had issues with the CD player

Summary

If you want a DAB radio with Bluetooth and a CD player, the Oakington is one of the best value options available. It looks and sounds as if it should be more expensive.

5. AZATOM Horizon DAB

The AZATOM Horizon is an inexpensive DAB clock radio with a sleep timer, a dimmable screen and a dual alarm clock with a snooze function. The radio uses Bluetooth 4.0 to let you stream audio from your phone or other Bluetooth-enabled device through its speakers.

Features

  • FM/DAB/DAB+ radio
  • Alarm clock
  • Can be powered by AAA batteries
  • Dimmable display
  • 12 or 24 hour clock format
  • Headphone jack
  • USB port for charging a smartphone etc.

Dimensions: 14.5 x 14.5 x 4.5 cm
Weight: 500 g

Pros

  • Small footprint and should fit easily on your bedside table
  • Good value for money
  • Easy to set up, with clear instructions
  • Good DAB reception

Cons

  • Can be fiddly to use some functions
  • Display can’t be turned off completely

Summary

If you want a cheap clock radio with Bluetooth, the AZATOM Horizon is a great choice. It doesn’t have especially good sound quality or high build quality, but it’s a good inexpensive bedside radio. Read our full review of the AZATOM Horizon here.

6. John Lewis Cello

John Lewis Cello Radio

The Cello from John Lewis’s own-brand range of digital radios is quite similar to the Majority Oakington reviewed above, but with the addition of internet radio. This lets you connect the radio to your WiFi network to stream thousands of radio stations from the UK and around the world. Internet radio is great if you want more choice of things to listen to or if the FM and DAB reception where you live is poor.

Features

  • FM/DAB/DAB+/Internet radio
  • CD player
  • Dual alarm clock with snooze
  • Sleep timer
  • USB port for playing MP3 files
  • Remote control
  • Headphone jack

Dimensions: 35 x 21.5 x 12.4 cm
Weight: 4.8 kg (boxed)

Pros

  • Attractive design with nice wooden casing
  • Features internet radio
  • Good sound quality

Cons

  • DAB reception is sometimes unreliable

Summary

The Cello is a quality mid-priced sound system that offers pretty much all the features you could ask for including internet radio, a CD player and a useful remote control.

7. Pure Elan BT3

The Pure Elan BT3 is one of the smallest DAB radios with Bluetooth, and one of the most affordable in Pure’s line-up of digital radios. It’s a straightforward and compact radio that can either be plugged into the mains or powered by 4 AA batteries.

Features

  • FM/DAB/DAB+ radio
  • Mains or battery powered (4 x AA)
  • Alarm clock
  • Sleep and kitchen timers
  • Colour screen
  • Headphone jack

Dimensions: 20 x 11.5 x 5.3 cm
Weight: 422 g

Pros

  • Good sound quality given its small size
  • Easy to use
  • Easy to carry around

Cons

  • Light and easy to knock over
  • Battery life is quite poor

Summary

If you want something compact and reliable made by a respected brand, the Pure Elan BT3 is a good choice. Like with most portable DAB radios, the battery life is quite disappointing, especially if you’re used to portable AM/FM radios that can last for weeks without replacing/recharging the batteries.

8. Roberts Revival RD70

The Roberts Revival RD70 is a stunning retro radio based on the classic Roberts radios of the 1950s. It’s a portable radio with a leather-effect carrying handle, though it can also be plugged into the mains.

Features

  • FM/DAB/DAB+ radio
  • Saves 20 preset stations (10 on FM and 10 on DAB)
  • Dual alarm clock
  • Sleep timer
  • Mains or battery powered (4 x AA)

Dimensions: 25.2 x 16 x 10.4 cm
Weight: 1.65 kg

Pros

  • Authentic-looking retro design
  • Nice warm sound quality
  • Easy to use and connect to Bluetooth
  • Feels very well made

Cons

  • Relatively expensive

Summary

The Revival RD70 is quite expensive given its features—you’re mainly paying for the design and the Roberts brand name. Nevertheless, if you want something with a classic vintage design and nice sound quality, it’s a good buy.

9. Ruark R1 Mk3

Ruark make some of the best-sounding DAB radios on the market, and the R1 MkIII offers amazing sound quality for a radio of its size. The radio sounds crisp and clear with a good amount of bass, and looks fantastic too.

Features

  • FM/DAB/DAB+ radio
  • Easy-to-read OLED display
  • Dual alarm feature that lets you set two independent alarms
  • USB port for charging a smartphone

Dimensions: 17 x 13.5 x 13 cm
Weight: 1.5 kg

Pros

  • Beautiful design with wood veneer finish
  • Excellent sound quality
  • Intuitive and easy to use
  • Alarm works well

Cons

  • Expensive

Summary

The Ruark R1 MkIII is expensive, but you’d be hard pressed to get better sound quality for the price. The design is also stunning; it’s a beautiful piece of furniture and not just a radio. Read our full review of the Ruark R1 MkIII here.

10. Panasonic SC-PM250BEBS

Technically the Panasonic SC-PM250BEBS is a micro hi-fi system rather than a radio. However, it could be a good choice if you want something that has DAB radio and Bluetooth as well as a CD player and external speakers.

Features

  • CD player that can play MP3 and WMA CDs
  • DAB/DAB+ radio
  • USB port
  • Saves 30 preset stations
  • 20W output
  • Remote control

Dimensions: 10 x 10 x 10 cm (base unit)
Weight: 1.1 kg

Pros

  • Very good sound quality
  • Versatile
  • Good value for money
  • Compact design
  • Pairs quickly and easily with Bluetooth

Cons

  • No headphone jack
  • Limited volume
  • No battery included for the remote

Summary

This micro hi-fi offers good value for money, and combines a large number of features into a small package. Be aware though, it doesn’t have a headphone jack. Read our full review of the Panasonic SC-PM250BEBS here.

Bluetooth Radio FAQs

What is a Bluetooth DAB radio and how does it work?

A Bluetooth DAB radio is like a regular DAB radio but with the addition of a Bluetooth receiver. This allows you to wirelessly stream music or other audio from your smartphone, tablet or laptop through the radio’s speakers. This effectively turns the radio into a Bluetooth speaker. Audio data is transmitted wirelessly and then decoded and played back by the radio.

When you first use Bluetooth on your radio, you have to ‘pair’ the radio with the device you’re streaming audio from (your phone or laptop etc.) For example, you will turn on Bluetooth on your phone and it will search for Bluetooth devices. If you’re in range it will find your radio, which you can connect it to. Once this is done, selecting the Bluetooth mode on your radio should allow you to stream music wirelessly from your phone.

Most Bluetooth radios will remember the last device that was connected to them, so you won’t need to pair your device each time.

A Bluetooth DAB radio will pick up radio in the same way as a regular DAB radio, so you don’t need to use Bluetooth to listen to the radio. Bluetooth is an additional feature you can use to stream internet radio, MP3s and music on online services such as Spotify and YouTube.

Can you get a pocket DAB radio with Bluetooth?

At the moment, there aren’t really any pocket DAB radios with Bluetooth available. We’ve explored this topic in more depth in this article.

Can you listen to the radio with Bluetooth headphones?

The radios reviewed here have a Bluetooth receiver rather than a Bluetooth transmitter, so you can’t use them with Bluetooth headphones. The only way to use a radio with Bluetooth headphones is to buy a Bluetooth transmitter such as this one from TaoTronics which attaches to the radio’s headphone jack and transmits a signal to the headphones.

 

DAB Radio Brands

Here’s some more information about the brands whose radios feature in this article:

  • AZATOMAZATOM are a British audio technology brand owned by 4Cool Technology Ltd. They make a range of products including headphones, radios and speakers. AZATOM products tend to offer good value for money and have modern-looking designs.
  • MajorityMajority are a Cambridgeshire-based digital radio brand who produce a large range of highly affordable radios. Their products usually offer very good value for money.
  • PanasonicPanasonic are a Japanese electronics brand that produce a large range of products including televisions, cameras and microwaves. They sell a range of hi-fi systems as well as standalone radios. Their products usually have modern designs and offer good value for money.
  • PurePure were one of the pioneers of digital radio in the UK. They are a British brand most famous for their stylish Evoke range of DAB radios. One of the best things about Pure products is that they are all available with a generous 3-year warranty. Pure’s products are relatively expensive, but tend to be high quality and reliable.
  • RobertsRoberts are one of the most famous British radio brands, and have a long history dating back to the 1930s. While the company does produce modern-looking radios, they are best known for their retro designs. Roberts products tend to be more expensive and have a luxury feel to them.

 

Conclusion

The radios reviewed above are all different, so which is the ‘best’ for you will depend on your personal preferences and budget. However, if we had to pick just one to recommend for most people it would be the Pure Evoke H3 as it’s reasonably priced, has an attractive design and good sound quality, with useful features such as a dual alarm clock.

 

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2 thoughts on “Best DAB Radios with Bluetooth (UK 2018)

  1. Can these Bluetooth radios be “connected” to Bluetooth enabled hearing aids please? I would like to listen without having to remove my hearing aid and use earphones.

    1. They have Bluetooth receivers rather than transmitters, so I don’t think that would be possible without some extra equipment. One solution could be to plug a Bluetooth transmitter into the radio’s headphone jack and using that to transmit the data to your hearing aid.

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