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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
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Price:£94.99+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime
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on 1 March 2012
I bought this for my husband's birthday who listens to radio (radio 4) all the time. This product has been released in Sep 2011 and it hasn't reviewed in Which? magazine. My husband is a fussy person so I had to make sure the radio had all the features he wanted. And he loves it! Here are the great features:

-Great look
-Built in charger (a must!)
-Nice handle
-Good battery life (has got big 4 C type rechargeable batteries)
-Has both FM and DAB radio
-Clear sound

So far we haven't found any bad features! We really adore this radio. Good reasonable price too.
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on 7 March 2014
Not really sure why I've felt compelled to write this review but I certainly read reviews on here before purchasing and maybe others will benefit from my opinion...

Firstly I am of the opinion that this Roberts Vintage is over-priced. The day I bought it I showed it to a friend who knows nothing about these things and asked her to guess the price and she said £29.99!! I have really studied it and some of the details are not very well executed. The white metal handle pivots at the sides are distorted where the synthetic leather carrying strap is pinched into the mounts. The volume knob was slightly distorted with a line running across the shiny top of it (you peel off a polythene covering which was there to protect the knob). Not issues that are reasonable to have on a £130 radio in my opinion. Roberts trade on an image of middle class quality (and of course the Royal Warrants) that may once have been true but they are over playing this hand these days. I think all of their products are far-eastern in origin and now lack the quality feel they once had.

I mainly bought it to use at low level on DAB at work when working late in the office. My workplace has fairly thick walls and large areas of metal framed double glazed windows (near to which I intended to place the radio). Despite doing the post-code check for DAB reception and being given a lovely long list of stations I could expect to receive at work I get NO DAB SERVICE AT ALL on this radio. I have taken another Roberts to work before (I think it is called the Expression) and got some limited service. I believed the DAB tuner was the same on these radios but I doubt that now given my experience with my new Vintage version, despite the buttons and functionality being virtually identical. At home I get reasonable DAB service. This is more a criticism of DAB than this radio in particular.

Sound-wise this has a fairly typical Roberts sound signature. It's all about the mid-range which is why voices really are nice. Speech-led radio is very good for this reason. For music it is so-so. Always pleasant and listenable but lacking drive and dynamics. There's very little bottom and the top end lacks sparkle for sure. If you were to go to this after listening to a Pure or Ruark I think you would even use the word 'muffled' to describe its character but in isolation I actually like the Roberts for its laid-back, unforced and easy-going nature. The word 'pleasant' could have been invented for it.

The really positive experience for me has been the way this radio deals with FM. The enthusiasts out there will know that FM is simply superior. This is not about analogue versus digital, it's just a refection on the already outdated standard that DAB represents. Being an 'early adopter' of digital radio in the UK has saddled us with a very imperfect form of digital broadcasting I'm afraid. I had become quite cynical about DAB radios in that experimentation with FM had always been disappointing due to the amount of extraneous noise and 'hiss'. I had arrived at the opinion that DAB makers were deliberately 'nobbling' FM on their products to maintain the myth that DAB is superior. In the case of this Roberts however FM reception is excellent in my home (where previous radios have been noisy). FM is absolutely silent for me on R2, R3, R4 and Classic FM and even through the tiny loudspeaker of this Roberts is simply nicer sounding than DAB.

So the FM performance is really why I've become very keen on this radio. DAB is fine too given the intrinsic limitations of DAB and of course with the proviso that you have a good DAB signal.

Which others did I consider? Pure Evoke D2 and D4 and even the Ruark. The D2 is cheaper than the Roberts and probably better if music is your thing. The D4 is about the same price but the boxy styling is not really my thing. The Ruark has a price premium over the Roberts and whilst a leather carrying case is available it is a clunky looking thing to cart around. I wanted a 'portable radio' and hey, the Roberts has a handle! I'm not going to claim carrying it around like a little handbag is one of life's pleasures but it is just so easy to take with you. I also pondered for some time about the Roberts RD60 Revival but I'm afraid the reports of peeling leather cloth coverings really put me off. As did to a lesser extent the rather garish gold finish of the control panel.

I know a portable radio is not a particularly big investment but I really tied myself up in knots before buying. I researched endlessly. At many points I decided against a Roberts because what I call the plastic Roberts products have zero charm and the Revival or Vintage products seem over-priced and lack the deeper quality their image implies. But on the other hand Roberts seems to stand alone in actually trying to get decent battery life from DAB radios. Almost all others eat batteries in a matter of hours. Whilst I give credit to Roberts for this improving situation compared with the first generations of DAB radios it's worth bearing in mind the typical power consumption of an old style Roberts or Hacker from the '60s or '70s would be 0.25W whereas even the new generation 100hr+ battery life Roberts DABs will probably be around 2W. And in this respect these are the best in the business. It's scandalous really in this age of trying to minimise the environmental impact and power consumption of every day products. At least the Roberts recharges batteries when not in use and the batteries are standard C-cells, not the bespoke and expensive power packs that other manufacturers favour.

My head tells me to rate this Roberts Vintage at three stars but my heart says four. My heart won. It is a long way short of perfection but there is a real niceness to it that is easy to connect to somehow (for me anyway). The Pures and Ruarks are clinical and have sharp edges everywhere. Maybe, even though the actual products probably don't warrant this feeling, there is still a little bit of magic left in the Roberts brand image.
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on 31 December 2013
About 5 months ago we moved house and imagine our disappointment that our beloved Pure Evoke 1S DAB radio could not pick up a signal. After getting fed up with listen to the radio on a laptop or iPhone I decided to by a new radio. I thought I best get an Internet Radio because of the problems the Pure was having picking up a signal. I opted to buy a Roberts Stream i83. The radio arrived from Amazon I plugged in and hey presto it picked up not only a wifi signal but also a DAB signal. The problem though was the i83 Stream looked cheap and plasticy and the sound quality was poor. I was just toying with the idea of keeping it then I noticed that the Roberts Vintage was on offer at Amazon for £69.99.

I decided to buy the Roberts Vintage hoping that it would be able to pick up a DAB signal as good as the i83 Stream could. As soon as I took the Vintage out of the box I fell in love with it. Its got great retro looks yet has a modern look about it - a strange combination, think of the new style of BMW mini - it looks a bit like the old British Leyland one in some respects but its totally different in other ways.

But what about its performance?

Well it could still pick up a DAB signal but not quite as good as the i83 stream can.

However, the sound quality on the Vintage was excellent. On a par if not better than the Pure Evoke. Add to this the fact that you can use batteries in the Vintage then it makes for a fabulous useable device.

I've not discovered any of the issues other reviewers have commented on such as odd sounding voices or vibrations.

This is one of those refreshing items you purchase and everything about just looks good, works great and is easy to use.

Buy one you will not be disappointed
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on 27 October 2014
Purchased this radio to replace a Roberts ECO1BK Ecologic that was returned 3 times to Amazon for various problems, the main one being its ability to turn itself back on after I had turned it off. Reading the reviews of this product this was a very common problem and I believe it is no longer available.

I considered Pure but was put off by the additional battery pack required and as I already had the rechargeable batteries for a Roberts radio where the batteries are recharged in situ this seemed a reasonable alternative. That was in December 2013 and I can honestly say I have had no regrets. This radio is a little belter! Yes, it is more expensive than the other one but worth every penny. It is slightly larger but still easily portable. The tone quality is amazing to the extent that I now listen to music rather than the spoken word stations. The presets are easy to set and are located by a rotary button rather than individual buttons which means you can set more presets than other radios I have had. Added to that it looks fantastic!

This is definitely a 5 star quality radio so why only 4 stars? I tend to move around the house a lot or into the garden and wherever I go the radio goes with me. I have only ever used the battery option, not mains, so it is subject to a lot of movement and very occasionally two of the batteries in the pack become loose. This necessitates unscrewing the base plate and replacing the batteries in to their relative compartments. Anyone using the radio on mains shouldn't notice this. Only a minor irritation and I feel guilty knocking off a star but would I buy it again - absolutely!!
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on 5 May 2012
Had to return this after 4 months after the audio developed an annoying buzz on certain voices. Otherwise an easy to use DAB radio in the classic Roberts tradition
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on 9 January 2012
Bought it for a gift for parents kitchen,small well made, nice tone, ideal small radio for kitchen,can use rechargable batteries.
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on 7 August 2012
A poor contender in the Roberts range, I have now returned it and gone for the more traditional Roberts DAB radio, which is substantially more expensive. Sadly it appears the "buzzing" referred to by several other purchasers is a very real and annoying issue. It is maddening. (I read the reviews after buying which was my mistake.) It does surprise me that Roberts have not addressed this issue as I could not imagine anyone wishing to listen to it. The potential otherwise for it is very good if only they can get rid of this buzzing.
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on 17 February 2016
I adore this cute Roberts Vintage! I have always wanted to own one, it brings back memories for me as a child our family owned one that followed us everywhere. I happened to see it on Deal of the Day which was a bonus because it was a bargain. It feels solid, sturdy, well made and looks classic. The buttons are all very well laid out and east to navigate. The display is excellent too. The favourite channel and carry handle are handy features. I could list and praise all of this radios many features - but just check out the spec listed for yourself. I not only chose this on reliable brand name, design and features but the rechargeable batteries feature. I can take this anywhere, around the house, garden, camping.
It gives a really good, rich sound, a better base than my Pure Elan DAB radio. It picks up great signals too. I thoroughly recommend this product. I love it!
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on 19 January 2015
I got a bit of a surprise when I opened the box, the radio was a lot smaller than I expected, it's about the size of a house brick :-(

I've had Roberts table top radio's for over 40 years and they were all decent sizes, maybe that was how it was "in the day" but size used to indicate the audio quality, bigger speakers and bigger "box" sort of helped the tone, so I didn't know what to expect when I plugged it in, one thing on that too, what is it these days that the transformer is "outside the box" surely that's an untidy backward step, who needs something other than the radio on a shelf or table top, looks hellish to me, so why have most if not all manufacturers gone down this path, anyway...

The build of the radio looks good, as good as you'd expect from a Roberts radio, scanning stations in is a breeze, I like the feature where you can store as many Favourite stations as you like rather than be limited to the number of "buttons" that the designers think you might need/want, so it's a thumbs up on that feature.

As for the sound quality, well, it matches the older Roberts radio's that I ever had, maybe the technology that's gone into the smaller speakers compensates for their smaller size. The sound is good at normal sound levels and it doesn't distort when the volume is turned all the up.

All in all although it's small, it's a good looking / well built radio, the sound is good, but... looking at it I'm wondering why it's priced at around £100 {or more}, even with a decent quality speaker inside.

Would I buy it again, Hmmm, if it as £60 yes, at £100 I'd spend more time looking around, probably for a radio that doesn't drag a transformer around at the back of it :-( odd how they never show the transformer hanging off the back in their promotional Ad's.

If the battery charger is "built in" {and they make a point of telling us that} why isn't the transformer "built in", like they used to be 70 years ago !!!
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on 19 June 2016
Superb radio. Well made and extremely portable. Set up easy - did it intuitively and checked with the comprehensive instruction book included in the box to make sure I hadn't missed anything. Packs quite punch from the small speaker but don't expect a room filling sound; this is a portable radio not a 'kitchen' radio. Great to have the station information on the display for not only DAB stations but also FM with its RDS. This radio in this version does have DAB+ (have seen some some queries about this) It is stated on the box and is in the online instruction book on Roberts web site (look for the Union flag and 'V3'!) though not marked as such on the radio itself. I assume there has been a software update to facilitate this as the radio did not have access to DAB+ on its first appearance in 2011 (I think)
Only had the radio a day or so but am pleased with the performance and the ability to run on batteries or mains AND to recharge rechargeable batteries when switched off.
From my short experience with this radio I have no hesitation in thoroughly recommend it
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