Wake up to your favourite shows with the best radio alarm clock. After all, these smart appliances need more love – and we’re convinced that radio alarms will make getting up a little bit brighter in the morning. Especially if you set the alarm to play your favourite music station, you’ll be grooving in your sleep and jiving your way out of bed, ready to start the day. A radio alarm clock is just one of many fantastic radio options on offer.
Perhaps, you’re wondering: what is a radio-controlled alarm clock? It’s both an alarm clock and radio built into the same device. For ease, you can pop it at your bedside, setting “the alarm to alert you at a set time, and instead of making a generic noise, you can wake up to sound,” says Roberts Radio. Luckily for you, the dreaded alarm will 'connect' with your chosen radio station, so – you wake up to music or the news.
Best radio alarm clock at a glance
• Best overall radio alarm clock: Roberts Zen Plus – View Offer at Roberts Radio
• Best radio alarm clock with Bluetooth: Pure Evoke H3 in Oak – View Offer at John Lewis
• Best radio alarm clock with CD player: Roberts Sound48 in White – View Offer at John Lewis
• Best radio alarm clock under £50: Roberts Chronologic VI – View Offer at Roberts Radio
Since the lockdowns, radio seems to have made a resurgence for many of us. With nothing new and only repeats to watch on TV, many of us turned to the radio in these times of difficulty. Since its conception, radio has evolved to encapsulate more than the news. With digital DAB radio, you’re offered more stations than ever before, with a reliable signal and no feedback. There are 54 stations broadcasting on national DAB radio, says Digital Radio UK. It’s undoubtedly making radio more accessible for many of us.
Whether you’re looking for a handy rechargeable portable radio to take to parties or something a little simpler, we have many models to consider. For outdoor enthusiasts taking frequent trips into the wilderness, a wind-up radio is a smart option, as it requires no electricity and is powered by you. Plenty of options and features suit every lifestyle, including Bluetooth speaker capabilities, an auxiliary or headphone jack and multiple wavebands to tune into. You’re spoiled for choice… Below, discover the best radio alarm clock the UK offers.
Best radio alarm clocks 2023
Best overall radio alarm clock
Drift off to the sounds of nature with the Roberts Zen Plus. The preloaded sleep soundscapes and
- Pre-loaded and stress-free sleep sounds
- Has a USB port for charging your phone
- Bluetooth, DAB and FM capabilities
- The use takes some time to get used to
Best radio alarm clock for seniors
With a large display, this Roberts Ortus 3 is ideal for many of us. It boasts an array of
- Jumbo dimmable clock display
- Two alarm timers and any button snooze
- USB smartphone charging
- No Bluetooth capabilities
- Some customers reported tricky buttons
Best radio alarm clock with Bluetooth
Next, we have the Pure Evoke H3 in Oak, which is feature-packed and comes with an impressive sound
- Real wood casing means natural-sounding audio
- Connects to Bluetooth and has a headphone jack
- Comes with dual alarms and timers for your day
- It doesn't come with a rechargeable power unit
Retro radio alarm clock
Or, why not choose the acoustically-dreamy Roberts Revival iStream? Choose between Sunburst
- Attractive, colourful 1950s styling
- Excellent DAB and internet sound
- Huge range of listening options
- Doesn't come with batteries and doesn't have the longest battery life
Best radio alarm clock with wireless charging
The Roberts Ortus DAB Charge is the bedside clock radio with it all. With a built-in wireless
- Bluetooth connectivity
- Wireless charging with Qi-certified smartphones
- Dual alarms and snooze function
- May not support your smartphone
Best radio alarm clock with CD player
Enjoy crystal-clear audio with Roberts Sound48 in White. It boasts Bluetooth listening, an
- Multiple alarm functions including a CD player
- Enjoy smart listening with Bluetooth and aux
- Store your stations with 40 handy presets
- Not a portable radio alarm clock
- May not be user-friendly for all settings
Best wake-up light radio alarm clock
Having a bedside light, radio and clock in one is incredibly useful for saving space on your
- Light, radio, clock, and alarm in one
- Good-quality sound
- Customisable functions
- Some found the setup instructions a little tricky
Budget radio alarm clock
Or, consider the Bush Portable in Black, boasting clear audio from your favourite stations. A DAB
- Intuitive alarm with sleep timer function
- 20 pre-set spaces for favourite stations
- DAB and FM for versatile listening
- No additional features like Bluetooth or smartphone charging
- Some customers found the pre-set feature tricky to use
Best radio alarm clock under £50
Last, we have the Roberts Chronologic VI, which comes highly reviewed. An old reliable, it comes
- Alarm and snooze button
- Back-up battery power
- Large LED time display
- Basic with no DAB stations
Verdict: Which is the best radio alarm clock?
For a restful night's sleep and reliable wake-up, we love the compact Roberts Zen Plus. With preloaded sleep soundscapes and natural wake sounds, this radio alarm clock has been designed to help you fall asleep and wake up naturally. It's a DAB+ radio and has Bluetooth and a USB charging port.
How do I choose the best radio alarm clock?
Nowadays, there are plenty of places to listen to your favourite smooth voices and tunes. With the help of Deputy Digital Editor Stephanie Antony, we’ve put together a brief list for your consideration.
Additional features – come first. Arguably, the most important, since you’re looking for a radio that will wake you up from your peaceful slumber daily. Some models come with a dual alarm, with plenty of options, alarms and settings.
User experience – is how easy it is to use… As you’ll be setting the alarm daily or weekly, ensuring ease of use is paramount. After all, you don’t want to be fiddling about with buttons each time. A straightforward process is preferred. We’ve listed some user-friendly options if you require this.
Audio quality – may be different across radio alarm clocks, especially since the introduction of DAB radios. Generally, DAB radios will have a better sound. You don’t want to wake up to any distortions. With any luck, the sound is clear enough to hear and get you up.
Design – is down to your personal preferences. There are plenty of sleek and modern radio alarm clocks on the market. However, many companies are going back to basics and reproducing the retro look, which we know and love. Above all, make sure it doesn’t take up too much room on your bedside table.
Future-proof – your radio. After all, FM and AM won’t be around forever. Gradually, DAB will take over and you don’t want to be left in the dark. We recommend getting a radio alarm clock with multiple wavebands for versatile listening, just so you’re covered.
Still a little lost? Stephanie has written an in-depth guide on how to choose a radio, with sound advice.
What is DAB/DAB+ radio?
DAB is a digitally transmitted sound. In the near future, radios that use traditional radio waves (FM) will be phased out in favour of DAB radio – as the DAB range is wider and the sound quality is arguably better. With time, you won’t be trying to find the exact wavelength of a show, it’ll be automatic.
Use the Postcode Checker to see what you can listen to, locally.
Piper Huxley is a Homes, Garden and Wellness Product Writer for Yours, an all-rounder who will write on anything from décor to wellness. When not scouring the net for the best home bargains, Piper is listening to a musical soundtrack and tending to her houseplants.