The John Lewis Octave is a stylish and elegant internet radio that also offers FM and DAB/DAB+ radio. The Octave is available in either a black ash or walnut finish, using real wood. The Octave is reasonably priced given its features, but how does it perform? Find out in this review…
- FM/DAB/DAB+/Internet radio
- Dual alarm clock
- USB port for playing MP3, AAC, WMA and FLAC files
- Aux-in port
- Saves 40 preset stations (10 FM, 20 DAB/DAB+, 10 internet radio)
- Remote control
- 20 watts speaker power output
Dimensions: 27 cm wide x 18 cm deep x 11 cm high
Weight: 2.6 kg
Performance and use
Unlike many internet radios which often have complicated menus, the John Lewis Octave is intuitive and easy to use. It’s probably one of the easiest internet radios to use on the market, and it’s easy to figure out without having to refer to the instructions manual.
This radio is very versatile and offers a great range of features. Its main feature is internet radio, which lets you listen to almost every radio station in the UK via WiFi as well as thousands of stations from around the world. The Octave also has FM, DAB and DAB+ receivers for when you don’t want to use the internet.
The Octave is more than just a radio. It has Bluetooth so you can use it as a wireless speaker, and there’s also a USB port that you can use to play MP3 and other audio files from a USB drive.
The John Lewis Octave has very good sound quality with a decent amount of bass thanks to the bass woofer. It has enough volume for a kitchen or living room. If you’re using it in the bedroom, you might find the lowest volume setting to be too high as it could wake someone else in the room.
This radio offers a dual alarm clock so you can set two separate alarms. It’s quite a good radio for the bedroom, though the display needs to be dimmed manually at night as it doesn’t have a sensor to allow it to dim automatically. Display light can’t be turned off completely without unplugging the radio, though the lowest setting should be dim enough for the bedroom.
One nice thing about this radio is that it comes with a useful remote control. This is great if you want to listen to the radio in bed or in the living room.
- Easy and intuitive to use
- Versatile with lots of features
- Good sound quality
- Useful remote control
- Lowest volume level could be quieter
- Display can’t be dimmed completely
The John Lewis Octave is one of the best internet radios in its price range on the market. It’s easy to use, has good sound quality and offers a great range of features.
The Octave is more expensive than a regular FM/DAB radio, but cheaper than similar internet radios from brands such as Pure and Roberts. Given its features, attractive design and performance, it offers good value for money.
One of the most popular internet radios in the UK at the moment is the Roberts Stream93i. It has a similar price tag to the John Lewis Octave and offers similar features including Bluetooth and a dual alarm clock.
A more high-end and expensive option is the Revo SuperConnect, which is a good choice if you want something with excellent sound quality.
If you’d like an internet radio with a CD player, check out the Pure Evoke C-F6. The Evoke C-F6 is a complete music system with stereo sound, internet radio and Bluetooth.
For some more options, see our roundup of the best internet radios.