Sound quality is one of the most important factors when it comes to choosing a radio. While there are lots of good budget radios on the market, their sound quality can be disappointing. It’s common for cheaper radios to sound tinny, have too much bass or lack clarity and depth.
Once you invest in a radio, you’re likely to own it for several years, so you want to make sure you choose one with excellent sound quality. Here are a few principles that will help you choose a good radio for sound quality:
- The more you spend, the better the sound quality. This isn’t always true, but in general the best-sounding DAB radios are also some of the most expensive. While spending more is generally a good idea, you should be aware that some radios have an inflated price due to a flashy design rather than the sound quality.
- Look for brands that have a reputation for good sound quality. The best brands for sound quality at the moment are arguably Revo and Ruark, though Pure and Roberts make some great-sounding radios too.
Read on for our recommendations of particular radios to consider.
Ruark R4 MkIII – Probably the best-sounding DAB radio on the market
The Ruark R4 MkIII is probably the number one best-sounding DAB radio available in the UK 2017. It’s the most expensive in Ruark’s range of digital radios, and offers 80 watts of power output through its stereo speakers.
In addition to FM and DAB/DAB+ radio, the Ruark R4 also has a CD player, a USB port for playing MP3s and Bluetooth, making it an all-in-one sound system rather than just a radio.
The radio is available in a range of beautiful finishes: walnut veneer, black lacquer and white lacquer. According to Ruark’s website, the radio is built from materials chosen specially for their acoustic properties.
This radio has very detailed sound and can be turned up very loud. You can also adjust the bass and treble levels, and there’s also a ‘3D Sound’ mode.
Buy online: £693.16 on Amazon.co.uk
See also: The other radios in Ruark’s product range all offer great sound quality, so they’re worth checking out too. The Ruark R1 in particular is a good alternative to the Ruark R4 since it’s significantly cheaper.
Revo SuperSystem – A great-sounding DAB/internet radio
The Revo SuperSystem is an award-winning DAB/internet radio from Lanark-based digital audio company Revo. It’s one of the main rivals to the Ruark R4 MkIII with a somewhat similar design. Like the R4, it provides 80 watts of power output through its two speakers.
The SuperSystem offers FM and DAB/DAB+ radio as well as internet radio, so you’ll be able to listen to thousands of stations from across the world. It also offers Bluetooth and is compatible with Spotify Connect, making it a very versatile sound system.
This radio’s walnut wooden cabinet helps contribute to its excellent sound quality. The sound is very clear and balanced, and the speakers have plenty of power.
Buy online: £578.58 on Amazon.co.uk
See also: A smaller and more affordable is the Revo SuperConnect, which also has great sound quality.
Pure Evoke H6 – One of the best-sounding portable DAB radios
If you want a portable radio you can carry from room to room, the Pure Evoke H6 could be a great choice. It’s one of the best-sounding portable DAB/DAB+ radios and also has a very pleasing design with the choice of an oak, walnut or black finish.
It’s important to note that the radio doesn’t come with a battery pack included, so you need to buy it separately if you want to use it as a portable radio.
This radio is very smartly designed and easy to use. It’s packed with features including a dual alarm, Bluetooth and a colour screen.
Buy online: £187.95 on Amazon.co.uk
Majority Oakington – A great-sounding budget radio
If you’re looking for something cheap with decent sound quality, the Majority Oakington is a good choice. The design is very reminiscent of the Ruark R4 MkIII, and while the sound quality isn’t at the same level it’s still very good for the price.
The Oakington has a good amount of bass, and while it doesn’t have the depth or clarity of a Revo or Ruark radio, it sounds better than you’d expect given its low price tag. It also offers a lot of extra features including a CD player, Bluetooth and MP3 playback via USB, making it one of the best value radios on the market.
Buy online: £99.95 on Amazon.co.uk
See also: Another popular radio in the same price bracket is the Roberts Stream93i, which is an affordable DAB/internet radio with good sound quality.