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If you’re looking for an FM/DAB radio to use on your work site, the Makita DMR104 could be a good choice. It’s similar to the earlier Makita BMR102 jobsite radio, but with the addition of DAB radio.
This radio is very sturdy and robust, and is designed to withstand being used outside on construction sites and other worksites. Find out what it can do and how it performs in this review…
- FM and DAB radio
- Splashproof (water resistant to IPX4)
- Anti-shock speaker system
- 2 stereo speakers
- LCD display
- Soft-grip handle that turns 90 degrees
- Uses an AC adapter or Makita rechargeable 7.2V to 18V cluster batteries or Makita 18V slide-on batteries.
Weight: 4 kg
Dimensions: 33 cm high x 17.6 cm wide x 29.4 cm deep
Performance and use
The Makita DMR104 is a tough jobsite radio made by Japanese power tool company Makita with builders and contractors in mind. It’s expensive, but is more durable and better suited to using on worksites than regular radios. The radio is water-resistant to IPX4 level, which means it’s splashproof and can withstand rain for a few minutes.
This radio has both FM and DAB, so you get a large choice of stations including popular stations like Radio 1 and Radio 2, as well as digital-only stations like Radio 5 Live Sports Extra. The radio generally has good reception on both FM and DAB.
One disappointing thing about this radio is that it has an excessive amount of bass, which can’t be reduced. You’d expect a radio at this price point to allow you to adjust the bass and treble levels, and this is something Makita should consider adding to future versions of this radio.
The speaker is powerful, as you’d expect from a jobsite radio. However, it can sound distorted when you turn them up loud.
You can plug the Makita DMR104 into the mains or use it with a Makita Li-ion Battery. You have to buy the battery separately, but you will save money in the long run as the Makita battery will last much longer. Unfortunately the radio doesn’t charge the battery when it’s plugged in—you have to charge the battery separately.
This radio doesn’t have Bluetooth or a docking station, but there is an aux-in socket which you can use to attach your phone or an MP3 player to play your own music.
- Water resistant—it can withstand up to 5 minutes of rain
- Stereo speakers
- Very sturdy and rugged
- Generally good DAB reception
- Storage space for cable and aerial in the back
- Batteries don’t charge when it’s plugged in
- Doesn’t come with a battery, and you can’t use a Makita drill battery
- You can’t adjust the EQ, and it can sound too bassy when it’s turned up loud
- Doesn’t have Bluetooth
- Only saves 4 preset stations
The Makita DMR104 is more expensive than regular DAB radios, but if you’re going to use it every day at work it’s worth it. The DMR104 is durable, powerful and water resistant, and should last for years. It also gives you a good choice of radio stations by offering both FM and DAB.
This radio’s main flaws are that it doesn’t have Bluetooth, and it’s too bassy when turned up loud. The bass levels might irritate clients and neighbours, which is something to consider.
Alternative jobsite radios
If you’re looking for something cheaper, you should consider the Hitachi UR18DSL/J4 Site Radio. It’s a bit lighter at 3.3 kg, but unlike the Makita it doesn’t have DAB digital radio.
A more expensive but probably higher quality jobsite radio is the DEWALT DWST1-75663-GB. It picks up both FM and DAB radio, and comes with 6 powerful speakers, which are great for noisy worksites. It also has Bluetooth so you can stream music from your phone.
For some more options, see our roundup of the best DAB site radios in the UK.