What is the Roberts Blutune?
This is only the second Roberts product review ever conducted by AVForums and considering they are the UK market leader in portable radio products, it’s long overdue.
Roberts Blutune Design & Connections
There’s not much by ways of physical connections for external equipment but when you have Bluetooth, in this day and age, that’s enough for most. There is also the ubiquitous 3.5mm auxiliary jack and a couple of USB inputs – one for charging devices and the other (A type) for administering software upgrades.
Roberts Blutune Setup and Operation
That Roberts is a radio specialist is immediately evident on setup where the Blutune will embark on an initial scan of the available DAB stations. If all goes well from there, you’re up and running, else you might need to relocate the unit to somewhere with better reception. If, for any reason, you need to retune, it’s just a matter of hitting the Menu key on the remote, navigating to the DAB submenu and selecting – wait for it – scan.
Roberts Blutune Features
Roberts Blutune Audio Performance
For what it sets out to do, the Roberts Blutune is certainly a success although in its default Normal Equaliser Mode, we found it can sound quite harsh an trebly. Relief is at hand from both the Rock and Loudness presets, which give a more dynamic, punchy air to proceedings although, in the case of the latter, that is at the expense of some detail at the lower end and it does distort at high volumes.
- Loud enough to fill most rooms
- Bluetooth connectivity is solid and stable
- DAB tuner is excellent
- Attractive and easy to use
- Can sound harsh
- Unforgiving of heavily compressed audio
- Remote is far too tiny
- Price may be a bit toppy compared t standalone wireless speakers
Roberts Blutune DAB/FM Radio and Wireless Speaker Review
Aside from the above mentioned wireless connection option, the Blutune only sports a 3.5mm jack for external sources but there is a USB port for charging your tablet or phone whilst you’re listening. There’s also an attractive and easy to read display on the front of the unit and, in terms of usability, it’s a winner.
The company’s radio heritage is evident in the attention to detail that side of the package has received and it sports one of the best DAB tuners we’ve seen in a sample, to date. Scanning for and storing channels couldn’t be easier and a handy Alarm function allows you to wake up listening to whichever station you like.
In terms of its audio output, the Blutune goes a little louder than we expected, given its compactness, but it does sound a little harsh and grating in its default sound mode preset. That can be improved with some of the Equaliser modes, however, although you’ll never be able to get a sense of true stereo – again it’s a size thing.
The Roberts Blutune successfully spans the wireless speaker/radio product categories with a lively and engaging sound and 21st Century connectivity. Given the general low audio quality of DAB radio we have to wonder whether one might be better served by a standalone wireless speaker used to stream internet radio from your Bluetooth device but it’s certainly a solid little product worthy of a demo.
Design and usability
Ease of Use
Value for Money
Our Review Ethos
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