What’s the best site radio with DAB in 2018? The majority of job site radios on the market are still AM/FM radios, but we’ve researched the market and selected what we consider to be the top 5 job site DAB radios currently available in the UK.
These radios are all designed to be used on building sites and other worksites and are built to be rugged and withstand the elements.
Best DAB Site Radios (UK 2018)
1. Makita DMR104 Job Site Radio
Made by respected Japanese power tool brand Makita, the DMR104 is an FM/DAB radio specially designed for using on worksites. One great thing about this radio is that if you already have a Makita drill battery pack, you can use it to power this radio.
- FM/DAB radio
- Showerproof with a water resistance rating of IPX4
- Anti-shock speaker system
- Runs on mains power or Makita rechargeable batteries
- Carrying handle
- LCD display
Dimensions: 34 x 30 x 17.8 cm
Weight: 4 kg
- Very tough and robust
- Nice-looking design
- Good sound quality (though a bit heavy on the bass)
- Good DAB reception
- Battery pack isn’t included
- Bass level is quite high, and can’t be reduced
As you’d expect from Makita, the DMR104 is very sturdy and well made. It’s quite heavy but can still be carried around with the comfortable handle. The radio is tough, has good sound quality and has an attractive masculine design. Overall, it’s probably the best DAB site radio for most people. Read our full review of the Makita DMR104 here.
2. DeWalt DCR020-GB Compact Jobsite DAB Radio
The DCR020-GB is a specially made jobsite DAB radio from US power tool manufacturer DeWalt. It’s quite a small radio that offers a more compact and easily portable alternative to the Makita DMR104 reviewed above. Despite being small, the DCR020-GB is strong, and has a roll cage to protect it from impacts.
- FM/DAB/DAB+ radio
- Can take 10.8V, 14.4V and 18V li-ion batteries, which aren’t included
- 3.5 mm auxiliary port
- USB charging point for charging a phone
Weight: 3.2 kg
Dimensions: 25.8 x 25 x 18.8 cm
- Easy to carry around
- Can be used to charge your phone
- Good amount of volume
- Feels strong and robust
- No battery included
- Doesn’t save preset stations
- Seems to be less reliable than the Makita DMR104
The DeWalt DCR020-GB is a great jobsite radio overall, especially if you want something small and light. It appears to be a bit less reliable than the Makita DMR104, which is why it’s the runner up in this list.
3. DeWALT DWST1-75663 Jobsite Radio Battery Charger
The DeWALT DWST1-75663 is a bit different to the other radios here. In addition to offering FM/DAB/DAB+, it also works as a battery charger for DeWALT batteries. This is a large and heavy radio that might be a good choice for bigger job sites.
- FM/DAB/DAB+ radio
- Works as a DeWALT battery charger
- IP54 dust and water protection rating
- USB port for charging phones
- Aux input
Dimensions: 55.8 x 38.4 x 16.4 cm
Weight: 8.6 kg
- Excellent sound quality
- Useful battery and phone charging functions
- Plenty of volume
- Very robust
- DAB reception can be poor
- Quite heavy
- No clock display
The DeWALT DWST1-75663 is a very useful radio for site workers DeWALT DWST1-75663 as you can use it to charge DeWALT batteries or your phone while the radio is playing. The sound quality is great and it delivers plenty of volume, though the DAB reception can be weak and it’s a shame there’s no clock display.
4. Hitachi UR18DSDL Cordless Site Radio
The Hitachi UR18DSDL is a modern site radio with DAB/DAB+, Bluetooth and a USB port for charging a phone.
- FM/DAB/DAB+ Radio
- IPX4 water resistance level
- Shock-absorbing end caps
- Customisable EQ
- Saves 10 preset stations
- USB charging point
Dimensions: 46.8 x 36.8 x 30.8 cm
Weight: 6 kg
- Good range of useful features
- Can be used to charge a phone
- Tough and robust design
The Hitachi UR18DSDL has great features, especially for charging a smartphone and streaming music from it via Bluetooth. It also has a rugged design and should hold up well when used on work sites or in the garden.
5. Labgear PI00506/14 6 W DAB Worksite Radio
This radio from aerial manufacturer Labgear is smaller than the other radios reviewed here, making it a good choice if you want something that’s easy to carry around. It’s also the cheapest radio on this list (at the time of writing), so it’s worth considering if you want something affordable.
- FM/DAB radio
- 6-watt output
- IP44 water-resistance rating
- Powered by mains or 4 x C batteries
- Rubber bumpers to resist impacts
- Saves 20 preset stations
- Aux-in port
Dimensions: 24.3 x 18.2 x 17.3 cm
- Relatively cheap
- Easy to use
- Robust design with rubber bumpers
- Compact and easy to carry
- Takes C batteries, which is less convenient than a rechargeable built-in battery
- Limited features
- Not as loud as other site radios
If you want something for a small workshop, this radio is a good choice. It might not be powerful enough for large work sites, but it’s a good budget option for less noisy environments. It’s best used plugged into the mains otherwise you will need to replace or recharge the C-size batteries it takes frequently.
What to look for in a DAB site radio
Choosing a radio to use on a building site, factory or other place of work is completely different to choosing one for your kitchen or lounge. Here are some of the key things to consider:
- Ruggedness: A site radio needs to be ultra-tough and capable of withstanding shocks as well as light rain. Look for shock-absorbing bumpers around the edge of the radio, and check its IP rating to see how well it can cope with water and dust exposure.
- Volume: A site radio needs to be very loud to be heard over the noise of drills and other machinery.
- Bluetooth: This is a useful feature to have for streaming audio from a phone or other device. Bluetooth will allow you to play music or other audio from your phone through the radio’s speakers. One alternative to using Bluetooth is to connect the phone via a cable to the radio’s aux-in port, if it has one.
- USB charging point: This will allow you to charge a phone or other device.
- Battery type: Some of the radios reviewed here such as the Makita DMR104 are compatible with power tool batteries, which can be quite convenient if you’re working on a job site. These batteries are also likely to last longer than regular batteries.
If we had to recommend just one of these products it would be the Makita DMR104, which is one of the most popular DAB site radios in the UK. While it’s not a very flashy model, it’s a good all-rounder with a robust design, plenty of volume and decent sound quality. It’s also quite affordable at the time of writing.
If you’re not too fussed about having DAB radio, the Makita DMR106B could be a good choice. It’s an AM/FM radio that has essentially the same design as the Makita DMR104 with the addition of Bluetooth and a USB port for charging a phone.