The Sony CMT SBT 100B is a micro hi-fi set with 50W speakers, a CD player and an AM/FM/DAB/DAB+ radio. It appears to offer a great range of features for the price, but how does it perform? Let’s find out…
Features and specs
- AM/FM/DAB/DAB+ radio
- Bluetooth with NFC
- CD player that can play regular CDs, CD-Rs and CD-RWs
- 50 W speakers
- Equaliser for adjusting treble and bass levels
- 3.5 mm line-in port
- USB port for playing MP3s
Speaker dimensions: 24 cm high x 15cm wide x 22cm deep
Weight: 8 kg
Performance and use
Bluetooth and connectivity
The Sony CMT SBT 100B offers wireless streaming via Bluetooth, and is also compatible with NFC. If your smartphone or other device is compatible with NFC, you can pair it to the Sony CMT SBT 100B just by touching it against the hi-fi to establish a wireless connection.
Bluetooth is useful for playing music from online streaming services such as Spotify or streaming MP3s from your smartphone or tablet. The hi-fi also has a USB port which you can use to connect an MP3 player.
This hi-fi offers a great deal of choice when it comes to radio. Not only does it have FM and DAB/DAB+, you can also listen to AM radio.
The display shows the station name and song name where available on both DAB and FM using FM RDS.
Ease of use
The Sony CMT SBT 100B is very easy to set up and start using, even if you’re not an audio geek. Bluetooth in particular is easy to use if you have a device with NFC, as you can just touch it against the hi-fi to pair the devices.
The one frustrating thing about using this radio is that it is often slow to respond. The CD loads slowly, and you will frequently see the words “Please Wait” on the display.
The speakers are more powerful than you might expect given their size. They offer 50 watts of power which can fill a large living room.
However, the sound quality is quite disappointing given that the stereo is made by Sony, and the speakers seem to have too much treble. This doesn’t mean the sound quality is bad, but if you’re an audiophile you might be tempted to replace this hi-fi’s speakers with some higher quality ones.
You might need to fiddle with the bass and treble levels for a while until you’re happy with the sound, as the stereo sounds quite treble-heavy by default.
- Remote control is well designed and easy to use
- Bluetooth connects easily and quickly
- Good value for money overall
- Good choice of audio sources: AM/FM/DAB/DAB+ radio, Bluetooth streaming, USB, line-in
- Takes a long time to load and read CDs
- Sound quality is disappointing
The Sony CMT SBT 100B isn’t perfect, but does offer a great range of features in a compact package. It offers good value for money compared to other hi-fis with similar features, but its speakers are disappointing and the device is often slow to respond.
Alternatives to consider
If you already have a pair of good speakers and are mainly interested in listening to CDs and DAB radio, you might want to consider the Denon RCDM40DAB Micro Component CD Receiver. This device offers very detailed sound when playing CDs, but doesn’t have all of the features of the Sony CMT SBT 100B such as Bluetooth.
Another popular Sony micro hi-fi system is the Sony CMT-X3CD. It has a CD player, Bluetooth and NFC, a CD player, USB port and a 20 W speaker, though no radio. The Sony CMT-X3CD is cheaper than the Sony CMT SBT 100B, but has less features and isn’t as powerful.
You can also check out our roundup of the best radio CD players.