Ruark isn’t just one of the most reputable radio brands in the UK; it’s a company that has earned an incredible amount of attention around the world.
A company dedicated to offering audiophiles across the globe the perfect combination of sensational sound and style, Ruark takes attention to detail to the next level.
That’s why any opportunity to conduct a Ruark review is something that the Radio Fidelity team jumps at.
Today, we’ll be taking a closer look at the Ruark R2 Mk3 – a Bluetooth streaming system and radio solution designed for modern music.
Ruark R2 review: Design and build
It probably won’t surprise you to hear that one of the first things we noticed in our Ruark R2 Mk3 review, was how attractive the design actually is.
Like many of the Ruark products, including the Ruark R1 Mk3 for instance, the R2 combines sleek sophistication and modern elegance to bring you a fantastic music system.
The fantastic Ruark audio R2 is brimming with sensational style.
Available in a variety of colours, this all-in-one music system brings modern technology like Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and Spotify Connect, together with traditional features like a rotary dial that you can use to control your entire audio system.
We love the way that Ruark has a talent for combining the best elements of the traditional, with aspects of the future. The Ruark R2 Mk3 is excellent for that purpose.
In fact, What Hi-Fi said that the R2 Mk3 is one of the “most gorgeous” systems for all-in-one music that they’ve seen – and we can definitely see the appeal.
Overall, the appearance of the Ruark R2 Mk3 is very similar to the Ruark R4.
You get the same central screen where you can find information about the music that you’re playing. There are the same fantastic dual speakers – similar to two blushing cheeks either side of the Ruark’s face.
At the same time, you still get that fantastic RotoDial that makes the Ruark Audio R2 so easy to manage.
The only thing missing that stops the Ruark R2 from becoming an exact copy of the R4 is the integrated CD slot. This feature has been replaced with Wi-Fi connectivity and world-radio.
If you can access the wide functionality of the internet, why bother with CDs, after all?
Ruark R2 review: Features
That takes us neatly onto the feature-focused part of our Ruark R2 Mk3 review.
This is a device that was clearly designed to fill the gap in audio-lover’s life. It comes with a complete range of modern capabilities, including Spotify Connect compatibility via Wi-Fi, Bluetooth streaming, and DAB or FM radio.
If you want to get the most out of the internet-enabled experiences on the Ruark R2 Mk3, you will need a Spotify Premium account – which is another added expense.
As with many of the other products in the Ruark portfolio, the R2 also comes with an aux input port, so you can stream music through a wired connection, and a headphone socket. That means that you get the benefit of being able to listen to your music privately too.
What’s more, to make the whole experience even more special, the Ruark R2 also comes with multi-room capabilities. That means that you can connect your device to other multi-room enabled models to get synchronised sound around your entire house.
Of course, for a price tag of just under £420, it’s pretty unlikely that you’re going to be able to deck your entire home out with these devices straight away. If you can afford an entire home system, then we’re very jealous.
Synchronised sound throughout your home
Wi-fi and internet connectivity
Spotify Connect compatible
World radio with DAB and FM tuner
Award-winning sound quality
Headphone jack and aux-in
Clock and snooze
1 year guarantee
Every aspect of the Ruark R2 is impressive, whether you’re looking at the Bluetooth streaming capabilities, the internet radio, or the guaranteed 1 year warranty. This is a device that’s sure to get people talking when they visit your home.
Ruark R2 review: Performance
If you’re looking for versatility and performance, then the Ruark Audio R2 is an excellent choice. The elegant Rotodial controller makes it easy to find the music that you want to listen to without having to deal with a bunch of complicated buttons.
At the same time, the vivid clarity of the display included with the Ruark R2 Mk3 means that you’ll be able to see the time or check the channel wherever you are in the room.
You can even adjust the display brightness if you’re using the R2 as a bedside clock.
Along with wireless connectivity, the R2 also allows you to plug your smartphone into the USB socket included if you want to charge your devices without taking up too many outlets in your room.
You can also choose for the Ruark R2 to wake you from your sleep with a specific radio station of Spotify playlist.
From a performance perspective, the elegance and ease-of-use associated with the Ruark R2 makes it a wonderful choice for many users.
However, for us, the number one thing that makes most Ruark devices stand out is the sound quality. This is a company that’s committed to providing second-to-none audio, and it really shows.
Not only do you get the option to play music and shows in a way that suits you, but you can rest assured that however you choose to listen, you’ll get an amazing output.
The R2 is the perfect all-in-one music system, complete with award-winning high-fidelity speakers.
Despite a relatively compact size, the Ruark R2 Mk3 provides plenty of rich tones, from the deepest bass to the highest, clearest notes in your favourite songs.
What’s more, like many other Ruark products, the R2 is excellent at plucking every detail from your music, even at lower volumes.
Ruark R2 review: Verdict
So, would we advise you to go out and buy a Ruark audio R2?
However, that doesn’t mean that you’ll actually be able to go and grab one of these products.
The price of an R2 is still way too much for a lot of music lovers to handle, which means that you might be more likely to pick up a similar product from Roberts or Pure instead.
While the Ruark R2 Mk3 is a sensational product, there are plenty of cheaper options out there that will offer similar results.
We’d say that this radio is only for those in search of truly premium solutions for radio listening.
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The third generation R2 delivers a wealth of superb features including DAB/DAB+, internet radio, built-in Bluetooth and Wi-Fi capabilities for wireless music streaming.
Wi-Fi and internet radio
Incredible sound quality
Fantastic design with plenty of elegance and class