Finding the best DAB radio with an iPod dock isn’t easy today.
Although iPods were all the rage a few years ago, most people prefer to stream music using their smartphones or portable radios these days. That means that iPods, mp3 players, and other similar devices are quickly becoming outdated and unnecessary.
On the other hand, DAB radios are the next generation in future-proof technology for radio listening. Often combined with other features like Bluetooth streaming and online radio, digital (DAB) devices ensure that you can listen to your favourite content, however you choose.
Many radio aficionados know that if they want to keep hold of the radio experiences that they love in the years to come; they need a device that’s DAB+ enabled. That means that the concept of a DAB radio and iPod dock is a little unusual.
Finding an iPod docking station with DAB radio
Finding an iPod docking station with DAB radio is a lot like tracking down an 8K television that comes with its own VHS player. The two technologies belong to entirely different generations.
Many of the products that we would have loved to review for this list have been discontinued, including the Roberts Dreamdock, and the Pure Contour D1. That means that the only way to get them is to try your luck at a car boot sale, or head over to eBay.
The good news? There are a handful of options on the market for people in search of a DAB radio with an iPod dock. Additionally, if you can’t find the best iPod docking station with DAB radio to suit your needs, there are always alternatives out there.
We’re going to check out the three top-rated options available for digital radio with an iPod dock. Additionally, we’ve tracked down a few alternative options too – just in case.
1. Roberts Blutune 65
Ah, Roberts, we can always rely on you.
Roberts Radio is one of the most diverse manufacturers in the radio industry today, offering an eclectic collection of DAB radios, portable device, and even solar-powered tools. It’s probably no surprise then that one of the last DAB radios with an iPod dock we could find in 2019 came from Roberts.
The Roberts “Blutune 65” is part of the Blutune range, offering a combination of listening options for today’s consumers. The device works with iPods, iPhones, and iPads, offering easy charging while you listen to DAB, DAB+ and FM radio. There’s also Bluetooth connectivity available if you want to stream music from your smartphone too.
Unfortunately for some customers, the Roberts 65 only supports the very latest lightning connections from Apple. If you have one of the older and chunkier iPods, then you might not be able to use this device.
For just under £150, however, you do get a range of features, including:
FM, DAB and DAB+ radio
Professionally tuned cabinet
Attractive compact design
Graphic EQ with adjustable treble and bass
Dual alarm clock
If you’re looking for the best DAB radio with an iPod dock, the Blutune 65 from Roberts radio is one of the few devices available today that is likely to tick all of your boxes. Unfortunately, like many Roberts products, the Blutune 65 is far from the least expensive option on the market.
On the plus side, you do get a bunch of handy capabilities to enjoy, including excellent sound quality, a reliable remote control that you can use to skip through tracks at a distance, and Bluetooth streaming. It all depends how much you’re willing to pay for iPod connectivity.
The VQ Retro Mk II takes a slightly different approach to offering the best iPod docking station with DAB radio. On the surface, the device looks very similar to a classic-style retro radio from Roberts. There’s a similar to vibe to the Roberts Revival – although we don’t think that this device is quite as attractive as the Revival.
On the plus side, it does come in a variety of colours and designs, so you’re sure to find something that suits your personal sense of style. Aside from playing DAB radio, the device also comes with a lighting dock, meaning that you can use it to play music from your iPod Nano and other similar devices. The VQ retro radio Mk II also comes with a 3-year manufacturer’s warranty.
Available for a much lower price than the Roberts at just under £90, the VQ Retro Radio Mk II comes with features like:
An Aux-in port for streaming
Dual alarm clock
A USB port for phone charging
Multiple designs to choose from
Portable carry handle
We like the overall retro style of the VQ radio, as well as the fact that the charging dock is quite discreet. If you’re not using it, you can just hide it away by pushing it into the radio. Additionally, the VQ comes with premium speaker engineering, which is something you might not expect from such a low-cost radio with an iPod dock.
For those worried about future-proofing their devices, the VQ also features digital tick approval too, which is nice to have.
Usually, we’d give you a lot more options than just 2 radios to choose from.
If you’ve read our top ten reviews before, you’ll know that we frequently browse through dozens of products to give you the best options. However, that was something we just couldn’t do when it came to finding a radio with an iPod dock. There aren’t enough options out there – at least not if you’re looking for a digital radio with an iPod dock.
However, we didn’t want to leave you with just two choices. That’s why we went out to find some alternatives. Here are some radios that come with iPod dock functionality, even if they don’t connect to DAB signals.
1. Majority Neptune speaker / radio
Usually, Majority is a pretty good brand to turn to when you’re having trouble finding the affordable technology that you need. Although we couldn’t find an iPod docking station with DAB radio from the Majority brand, we could find a device that offers a combination of radio and iPod functionality.
The Majority Neptune speaker and radio comes with an Apple-certified lightning docks that works with a wide variety of iPhones, iPods, and more. You can charge your phone with the device and play your favourite tunes simultaneously. For those without Apple devices, there’s also a USB charging outlet available too.
Unfortunately, there is no DAB radio with the Neptune, but you do get outstanding sound quality from an FM radio connection, and Bluetooth streaming. You should still have plenty of content to flip through with this device.
At under £45, features include:
Dual alarm with snooze features
Full technical support warranty for every item
Wireless Bluetooth streaming
Connectivity with Spotify, YouTube, Deezer, and more
Patented HD sound with 20-watt speaker system
MFI Apple certified charging
USB charging outlet
It’s a shame that the Majority doesn’t come with a DAB connection. Otherwise it would have been one of the leading DAB radios with an iPod dock on the market. However, if you’re just looking for basic radio connectivity combined with the benefits of iPhone, iPod, or USB device charging, then you can’t go wrong with the Majority.
There’s very little to complain about with this device, besides its lack of DAB connectivity. One downside is that there’s no option for a bass boost, and the volume isn’t as loud as it could be either.
A similar alternative to the best DAB radio with an iPod dock, the AZATOM home hub is very close in functionality to the Majority above. Like the Majority, the device comes with an apple-approved lightning connector, which is fully compatible with a range of Apple products.
Additionally, if you’re looking for something sleek and simple to place on your bedside table or kitchen counter, then the Homehub is a great choice. This is a very unassuming device that won’t take up a lot of space or attention. It’s not exactly going to be a talking point when visitors come over, but that might be exactly what you’re looking for. The AZATOM features a lot of great capabilities, including great sound performance, Bluetooth streaming., and even a 3-year warranty.
For an attractive price of just under £50, the AZATOM home hub is a friendly FM radio with iPod dock that should work for a variety of consumers.
Slim and lightweight design
Alarm clock with snooze
Automatic time updates
This is a pretty nifty device all around. It offers a combination of a great alarm clock, best-in-class sound performance, and even a handy 3-year warranty for peace of mind. However, the product does have its limitations. Like with the Majority above, the biggest issue with this device is that it’s just a basic iPod dock with radio functionality. There’s no DAB connectivity to make sure that you can access the widest selection of channels.
On the plus side, you still get a lot of features for less than £50, including Bluetooth streaming and FM radio. The question is whether or not that’s enough for you. The FM radio reception is great, but it would be nice to have DAB too.
Another option for those who can live without the benefits of DAB sound is the KitSound X Dock. The KS X Dock offers users a multi-functional docking system designed specifically for Apple devices. You won’t be able to use it for charging any other smartphone or MP3, – but if you’re an Apple user, that won’t be a problem.
Equipped with a multitude of features, including a 3W driver to deliver your playlists, and a dual alarm clock, the KitSound is a nifty piece of tech. However, we were surprised to find out that this device doesn’t come with Bluetooth streaming. That’s something that we often see as standard on many modern radios today.
On the plus side, you can choose to wake up to a buzzer or to FM radio if you’re using the KitSound radio with iPod dock as a bedside alarm.
Available for just over £45, you’ll get features like:
Buzzer or FM alarm options
Lightning connection charging
Compared to the other iPod docking stations with radio functionality that we’ve reviewed so far, the KitSound is very basic. There aren’t as many features here as you would get from the Roberts or even the Majority FM speaker above. However, if you’re looking for something very simple, without any bells and whistles, then the Kit sound will get the job done.
There’s also the option to choose the “Dock Plus”, version of the product. However, there are no added features with this product, there’s just the option to charge and use a wider range of iPhones and iPods.
If you want a slightly more impressive version of the KitSound digital radio with an iPod dock, then you can always upgrade to the Qi. Once again, this isn’t a DAB radio with an iPod dock – it’s only capable of connecting to FM signals. However, you do get the added functionality of Bluetooth with this particular device. Additionally, there’s a magnetised shelf to keep your phone secure while it’s charging.
Although we were disappointed by the lack of DAB radio with this product, we have to say that it’s one of the more attractive alternatives that we’ve seen. The combination of a soft material speaker and a wooden base is a great touch. Additionally, you don’t have to worry about plugging your device in, because the charging comes from a wireless connection. On the downside, that does mean that you’re going to need a pretty modern phone if you want the product to work.
Aside from attractive design, the KitSound XDock also comes with 30 preset stations and a dimmable display, which makes it a great bedside radio.
For just over £65, you’ll get:
Wireless charging with Qi tech
30 preset stations
1 year product warranty
Again, it’s hard to get too excited about this device as one of the best iPod docking stations with radio functionality, because there’s no way to access DAB. However, if you’ve been looking for a way to update your bedroom with a wireless charger, and you like the idea of having FM radio too – this could be a great product for you.
Despite a relatively compact design, the sound quality for the KitSound XDock is surprisingly good. However, you’ll find that even with a dimmable display, this product can be quite bright – which means that it won’t be ideal for all users.
Since there weren’t a huge number of DAB radio and iPod dock combination devices to choose from, we offered a handful of alternatives in the form of FM radio with docking technology. However, perhaps you’re not worried about having an actual “dock” at all. If that’s the case, then you could potentially consider a DAB radio with a charging solution.
Although the lack of a dedicated dock means that you’ll need to connect your phone via a wire, that’s a small price to pay if you’re looking for DAB radio with the option to keep your phone powered up. Here are two of our favourite radios with charging features, if you can’t find the right DAB radio with an iPod dock.
1. Panasonic SC-HC412EB-K
One of the most stylish radio systems available from Panasonic today, the SC-HC412EB-K Bluetooth Hi-Fi system comes with everything you need to listen to your favourite channels and music. DAB and FM radio comes built-in, along with a CD player and Bluetooth connectivity for streaming. There’s also something called “Space Tune” mode with this device, which means that you get the highest quality of sound output regardless of where you put your speaker.
With this Panasonic, you’re not getting the best DAB radio with an iPod dock, but there is the option to connect your device to the radio so that you can charge it while you’re listening to music. Additionally, no matter what you’re listening to, you can rest assured that you’re going to get excellent sound quality, thanks to the LincsD-Amp technology in the speakers.
For just over £125, the Panasonic comes with features like:
Leading amp technology
Enhanced bass feature
Stream with Bluetooth
Space Tune mode
Acoustic sound mode
5 Preset options
DAB+ and FM radio
You might not have a specific place to put your phone or iPod when you’re listening to the Panasonic, but you can still charge it up using the available USB charging port. At the same time, you get a range of added extras, including excellent DAB radio connectivity, a selection of listening modes to choose from, and the option to stream via Bluetooth.
One downside is that this device does take up quite a bit of space compared to a lot of the products that we’ve covered so far. Additionally, the volume isn’t as loud as it could be.
Finally, if you’re looking for a digital radio with an iPod dock, but you’re willing to compromise, the Majority Homerton could be an excellent alternative. This state-of-the-art audio system includes digital and internet radio, as well as DAB/DAB+ and FM. That means that you can listen to virtually any channel you like with no problem.
Additionally, although there’s no specific iPod dock, you can connect your iPod and other devices to the system using a USB cable. The cable will charge your device when the Homerton is plugged in, and it also gives you streaming options at the same time. Other ways to access your content via the Homerton include a built-in CD player and Bluetooth streaming.
The Homerton is a great all-in-one device, which offers ease of use through an included remote control, and the option to control your radio with the AirMusic app on your phone.
For a little less than £105, you’ll get features like:
When you can still access all of the music on your iPod and charge your devices using your DAB radio, a docking station isn’t 100% necessary. We even found that there was enough space on the flat surface of the Homerton so that we could place our devices neatly on top of it when we were listening to music. That means that you don’t have to struggle to find a place for your phone or iPod either.
One downside is that this is quite a large device, so it’s going to take up a lot of space wherever you decide to put it in your home. Additionally, the volume is a bit limited.
Ultimately, finding a digital radio with an iPod dock just isn’t as easy as it used to be these days. If you’re committed to having both DAB signal and a docking station, then you’re only going to have a couple of choices to pick from.
A docking station is an excellent way to make sure that you can connect your iPod to a larger speaker system so that you can listen to your song through your radio while your device charges. However, a docking station might not be 100% necessary these days.
There are other DAB radios out there that will allow you to stream audio through a USB input or Bluetooth connectivity when you’re charging your iPod or phone.
If you’re committed to having a docking station, then you might need to consider an FM radio instead, which is why we covered a few leading options in that area.
However, we think the better alternative is to stick with a DAB or digital radio that comes with the option to charge your devices and play music from them using alternative technology. Docking stations are quickly becoming a thing of the past – particularly in the age of wireless charging and smartphones.
For us, the best DAB radio with an iPod dock is definitely the Roberts Blutune 65, offering a combination of Bluetooth streaming, DAB radio, and, of course, your own docking station. However, we also think that the Majority Homerton can offer a very similar experience functionality-wise – albeit with a lower sound quality than the Roberts.
Are you willing to compromise on your DAB radio this year? Will you opt for a docking station and give up on DAB? Or will you restrict yourself to the limited options on the market? Join the conversation in the comments below, or share your thoughts with us on social media.
Radio Fidelity: For the love of radio.
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