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The VQ Monty is a very stylish FM/DAB/DAB+ radio from British brand VQ. Design-wise the Monty is similar to the Pure Evoke H3 with its wooden finish and vertical design, but with the addition of a carrying handle. While it’s clear the Monty looks great, how does it perform? Find out in this review…
- FM/DAB/DAB+ radio
- Bluetooth for wireless streaming
- USB port for charging a phone or other device
- 10-watt speaker
- 3-year manufacturer’s warranty available
- Dual alarm clock with snooze
- Sleep timer
- Saves 60 preset stations (30 on FM and 30 on DAB/DAB+)
- Headphone jack
- Built-in rechargeable lithium-ion battery
- Adjustable EQ with presets
Dimensions: 18.6 cm high x 13 cm wide x 10 cm deep
Weight: 1.4 kg
Performance and use
In terms of features the Monty is quite similar to earlier radios from VQ such as the Retro Mini. Unlike the Retro Mini however, the Monty comes with a USB port which is very handy for charging a smartphone. With DAB+ and Bluetooth it offers most of the features you’d want from a modern radio, except for internet radio.
Despite having lots of features, this radio is quite simple and easy to use. The LCD display is clear and easy to read, though the scrolling display could be distracting if you have it on your desk. Using Bluetooth is straightforward and quick, so it’s easy to stream music and other audio from your phone. Changing stations can take a while as there aren’t any dedicated preset buttons, so you have to scroll through your presets.
The Monty has good sound quality for a small radio. It’s crisp and clear, and you can adjust the EQ settings yourself to get the kind of sound you like.
The Monty comes with a built-in battery that charges when the radio is plugged into the mains. According to VQ the battery lasts for up to 36 hours, though it’s unlikely to last quite this long in practice.
The VQ Monty has a beautiful design and would look great in a rustic kitchen. Unlike some of the cheaper alternatives with wood-effect finishes made from plastic, the Monty has a real wood veneer which gives it a premium feel. It’s available in several different finishes: oak, walnut, limed oak, green grass oak and black zebra.
- Crisp, clear sound
- Beautiful design
- Bluetooth is easy to use
- Easy to use
- No dedicated preset buttons
- Scrolling display can’t be switched off
If you’re looking for a stylish and compact digital radio with good sound quality, the VQ Monty is a great choice. It would add a touch of class to any kitchen and is quite versatile with FM/DAB/DAB+ radio and Bluetooth as well as aux-in.
This radio doesn’t have any serious flaws, though some people might find the lack of dedicated preset buttons inconvenient, and the scrolling text on the display can be distracting.
If you like the design of the VQ Monty, there are lots of similar-looking alternatives you might want to consider. One of the best is the Pure Evoke H3, which has similar specs to the VQ Monty including FM/DAB/DAB+ radio and Bluetooth. The Evoke H3 has a similar price to the Monty, and is also made by a respected British radio brand.
A cheaper alternative with a similar design is the JVC RA-D51 DAB/FM Clock Radio, which has a less powerful speaker and doesn’t have Bluetooth but is cheaper and has a nice design.
Another budget alternative to consider is the AZATOM Blackfriars, which is a compact portable FM/DAB/DAB+ radio with a wood-effect finish. The AZATOM Blackfriars has most of the features you could want in a digital radio except for Bluetooth (see the best DAB radios with Bluetooth here).