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The best DAB radios to enhance the soundtrack to your day

Radio listening figures are booming as we tune in to our favourite stations throughout the day, so now is the perfect time to upgrade your listening experience

Slick good looks that blend seamlessly into your home decor and ultra-sharp sound make DAB (digital audio broadcasting) radios the obvious choice when choosing a new radio. DAB reception now covers over 90% of the country with a choice of 40 stations (you can check to see what’s available in your local area at Get Digital Radio). While there’s no set date for the switch over from analogue to digital radio, it’s still the sensible choice when upgrading, particularly now when for many of us radio is providing the soundtrack to our everyday lives. Crisp, clear connectivity with the outside world has never seemed more important.

Which DAB radio to choose?

Whether you need a bedside clock radio, a kitchen radio or a model that’s integrated into a home audio system, John Lewis & Partners have a style to suit. The good news is that in the last few years the price of DAB radios has come down, so models such as the John Lewis & Partners Spectrum Mono DAB and Roberts Play 10 DAB offer excellent value for money. Invest a little more and you can enjoy high-end speakers, a powerful amp and luxe materials.

What’s new? ‘DAB+ is an upgrade of the current DAB system, the main advantage being that it is three times as efficient, meaning it can carry more stations and has higher audio quality,’ says Roshni Chauhan, Partner & Buying Assistant, Audio & Imagery. ‘DAB+ is also the current standard across much of Europe so if you are able to travel, the radio travels with you.’

ROBERTS Revival iStream 3 DAB+/FM Internet Smart Radio with Bluetooth

As more and more of us turn to the radio to soundtrack our days spent at home it’s worthwhile considering a DAB upgrade.

Best DAB radios 2020: portable, Bluetooth, in-car

By Becky Scarrott 05 November 2020

Budget, portable and Bluetooth options.

Best DAB radios Buying Guide: Welcome to What Hi-Fi?’s round-up of the best DAB radios you can buy in 2020.

In these uncertain times, we have a lot of love for the original ‘wireless’ – the radio. OK, we have myriad options for listening to music and accessing news in this day and age, but there are still times when sticking the radio on in the kitchen just can’t be beaten.

With the advent of DAB, internet radio and Bluetooth streaming, the humble radio has come a long way since its bedside clock integration.

What follows is our pick of the best DAB radios we’ve reviewed. They all give you access to hundreds of digital radio stations, as well as a number of useful features such as Bluetooth and live recording. Our round-up includes budget and premium options, from dependable brands such as Pure and Roberts. Learn the names of these top DAB radios now and be first in line to snap up a deal when discount events roll around.

How we choose the best DAB radios

We review hundreds of products each year. We have state-of-the-art testing facilities in London and Bath, where our team of expert reviewers do all the testing. This gives us complete control over the testing process, ensuring consistency and of course, impartiality.

All products are tested in comparison with rivals in the same price category, and all review verdicts are agreed upon by the team as a whole rather than an individual reviewer, again helping to ensure consistency and avoid any personal preference.

We choose the best products from all of these reviews to feature in our Best Buys, as listed below. That’s why if you take the plunge and buy one of the products recommended here, or on any other Best Buy page, you can rest assured you’re getting a What Hi-Fi? approved product.

Read on for our pick of the best digital radios.

1. Roberts Stream 94i

A 2019 Award winner, the fantastic Stream 94i sets the bar high for DAB radios..

SPECIFICATIONS

Radio: FM, DAB, internet | Connectivity: Bluetooth, wi-fi, USB, ethernet, 3.5mm | Spotify Connect: Yes

Want to get a whole host of tunes for free, over the airwaves and hiss-free? A DAB radio is a brilliant option. ]]>