Excellence in DAB radio design is something of a lost art. Perhaps this should come as no surprise considering the traditional radio experience is jostling for its place on the frontline of your daily routine. It has been replaced instead by a litany of Apple products that not only stream radio and music, but can connect to the likes of Twitter and Facebook. Then again, it isn’t every day you have the opportunity to wake up to the Ruark R1 Mk3 – perhaps the ultimate tabletop radio on the market.
Elegantly designed and simple to control, the third generation of the R1 has further fined-tuned this winning and seemingly timeless Ruark style. It delivers where it counts, while maintaining its focus by stripping out every extraneous feature that its competitors often feel inclined to include.
Don’t count the R1 Mk3 out because of its small size, because not only will you discover a surprising separation between the mids and trebles, but the bass response is fantastic, too. Thankfully, vocals are incredibly crisp, which should come as welcome news for any fans of talk radio or dramas out there.
A single knob on top of the R1 Mk3 controls everything this DAB radio has to offer. Connecting a device to it via Bluetooth is as simple as clicking the pairing button and yes, there’s even a USB port hidden away on the back of the device in case you’d like to charge your phone up as well.
For such a small unit, the clarity and dynamics found in the sound – whether you are chilling to the radio in the AM, or streaming music to it via the in-built Bluetooth receiver in the PM – constantly impress. Sure, the Ruark R1 isn’t going to power a party, but it isn’t supposed to. Instead, this DAB radio works tirelessly to improve and assist you in maintaining your daily routine without any hassle or trouble. How did we ever manage without it?
Verdict: The R1 Mk3 looks fantastic, sounds great and manages to impress while still maintaining its simplicity. You won’t find a better DAB radio on the market at this price.