Top 10 Best Job Site Radios For 2017 – Detailed Comparison & Reviews
Best Jobsite Radio and Reviews
Whether you are working on the highest building in the world or at the workshop working on a project or working as a plumber at your next job, you need a little music to make things come to life. Gone are the days where people sang when working just to keep the momentum and the spirit going. Technology has evolved from those days and now you can listen to your favourite music, literally anywhere.
As a tradesman looking to hear their favourite songs, you probably have heard the joys of having a jobsite radio. They make work a whole lot fun and you feel the exhaustion less. Jobsite radios were developed to keep the working man company and still be able to survive the environment.
The jobsite radio has earned its place among the top power tools in your toolbox. Workmen from around the world can attest to the essential part of their work life, these radios have become.
Maybe you are in the market looking for the best jobsite radio to suit your needs. The market is overrun with different brands and designs at different prices, that confusion is understandable. With features such as DAB, Bluetooth connections, iphone/smart phones docks, water resistance not to mention, sound quality. Knowing which model is right for you can become difficult. A decent model with cost you around the £80-100 mark, with more advanced models cost anywhere around the £200 mark.
BEST OF THE BEST
OUR BEST PICK
Bosch Professional GLM
BEST SMALL RADIO
Jobsite Radio Buyer’s Guide
When in search of a jobsite radio, there are a few things that you should look out for. These factors will be explored more below.
When looking to purchase the best site radio, you need to consider factors such as value for your money. Tool manufacturers these days are required to work within certain standards. So you can be sure that these standard products are of good quality. Below are some of the notable points to remember as you shop.
- Power Source - Jobsite radios usually have two power sources. They can be battery powered or main powered. Depending on your work environment you can select a site radio that suits your needs. When working outdoors you can select a cordless radio as it’s easy to manoeuvre around. Using battery powered site radios require recharge to last entire shifts. When indoors however, you can take advantage of sockets to provide you with music as you are working and save battery power until its really essential.
If you are looking to buy a radio site that only uses battery packs, remember that most manufactures sell them separately from the radio itself. Some manufactures also sell the adapters or battery packs with their chargers. The idea is that you can use the same batteries from your power tools to save on money. For example most DeWalt radios use the same batteries as most of the other power tools such as drills.
- Robustness - Considering that a construction or workshop environment is not the gentlest of places, worksite radios are built to adapt. Depending on the design and the protection mechanisms, jobsite radios can survive falls and rough handling. Some manufacturers include a rubber protected exoskeleton that enables portability and protection.
The material used is usually durable and can absorb shock from falls without breaking or chipping away. These extra protection features will help you maintain the radios ability to serve you through the years. Cheaper radios are usually not as well protected and are more likely to get damaged.
- Sound Quality - The ability of a jobsite radio to be loud and still produce quality sound will be beneficial to your work life. Work sites can get noisier than expected. The radio you choose to buy must be able to reach across a wide area without distortion. Distortion occurs when the speakers/amplifiers exceed their set capabilities. When this happens the sound quality becomes poor and unbearable to listen to for long periods of time.
- Weather protection - If your intention is to work outdoors, you need to look for a radio that can be able to withstand the weather conditions. Most manufactures provide information on the level of weather resistance. Water proofing is especially important as moisture tends to ruin electrical equipment if exposed for long periods.
- Ease of use - When operating a jobsite radio, you want features that make your work easier. The buttons and dials should be easy to use, with or without gloves. Some manufacturers make wider dials to enable easy access when pressing. Most workers prefer dials more than buttons when it comes to controlling the volume function. Having too many dials and buttons may confuse you. Use models with simple operating systems.
The LCD display should give you all the information you require. Like date and time, battery charge level, sound source, station frequency, alarm clock and volume, among other things. The display should not be too small. Small displays may frustrate those with poor eyesight or dirty eye-wear. Choose a sizable display that displays information even when the screen light is dimmed.
- Station reception and Tune ability - You want to work with a jobsite radio that has excellent reception. Sometimes work takes us to remote areas. Jobsite radios have the ability of working in remote areas as long as it still within radio range. It is easier to work with radios that automatically scan for stations within the area. You should be able to tune your channels without unwanted distortion. This way you can enjoy your music despite your current location.
Some site radios include the feature to switch from stereo to mono. This means that stations with weak signals can be heard better by reducing intermittent static.
- Versatility - At times radio content can get boring and you want to switch it up. you need a radio that has the ability to include auxiliary inputs. These days’ jobsite radios permit you to play music from your phone, Bluetooth, CD or mp3 player. You can work from locations that are far from radio signals and still manage to have a jingle keep you company. You can also access radios with equalisers to tune your music just right as you work.
- Extra compartments - In the market there are jobsite radios that allow you to store your auxiliary devices while in use. These compartments ensure that your gadgets are out of harm’s way. These sealable compartments include rubber gaskets that help in keeping dust and moisture out. Some of these devices contain USB ports that can be used for charging or perform auxiliary functions. These features are an added bonus.
Our Top 6 Jobsite Radio Reviews
Bosch Professional GML SoundBoxx Jobsite Radio Review
**OUR BEST PICK**
- Powerful sound no matter what method of music you use (FM/AM and MP3).
- Fits in the Bosch L-boxx for easy portability.
- Uses 14.4 V or 18 V lithium-ion batteries or power adapters pluged into the mains.
- Use external music players such as an mp3 player, ipod or smart phone via aux-in socket.
- 20 volume levels and an equaliser function to adjust the bass and treble for amazing sounding music.
- 10 amazing preset set stations, 5AM/5FM means that changing and finding stations is super easy.
- Very light weight at only 2kg, this means it's very easy to transport and carry from job to job.
- Measures 30.7 cm long and 14.8 cm high which means its small enough to pack away with ease but large enough to house many features and fanatic speakers.
- Radio frequency range AM 531-1.602 kHz
- Radio frequency range FM 87.5-108 MHz
- Input voltage(s), mains 100-240 V
Among the reasons we love the Bosch professional jobsite radio lies in its sound quality and power. This site radio is equipped with 5Amp speakers that produce high-quality sound with minimum distortion. You get to enjoy tuning your song to soothe your ears through the equaliser feature built in.
Power by re-chargeable batteries or mains
Depending on the power source that you decide to use, you can enjoy the jobsite radio for extended periods of time without disruptions. This product is preferably powered by 14.4V or 18V lithium-ion batteries sometimes sold separately. These Bosch professional batteries capacity limits are within 1.3Ah-4.0Ah (the higher the Ah, the longer the battery last), so you can be sure that this radio will produce powerful sound as it has all the power it needs. Alternatively, you can decide to plug in your adapter to a power socket and keep enjoying to what you were listening to without wasting battery power.
Easily be transported in the L-boxx
The Bosch professional radio has another plus in its corner; it can easily be transported in the L-boxx. It only takes up half of the box (see this on the video). The other half of the box can be used in storing another power tool of equal size. So whenever you need to be on the move, you just shove it in your tool box and go.
To add to its portability, the radio utilises batteries so you can carry it to any remote location and have no problems. Remember however to carry extra battery packs if you will be running longer shifts.
Watch the video below
Very robust construction
We also love how durable and versatile this product is. Designed with robust housing the radio is well protected when tossed around,bumped with other objects or accidentally knocked off from a height. The extra protection and handles prevent the dials/display from getting damaged. Using the handles or other apertures, you can just hang it on a wall and continue working.
Listen to the radio or plug in your Ipod, MP3 Player or Smartphone
This jobsite radio also allows the use of auxiliary inputs. You can play music from your mp3 or choose to listen to your saved stations. The jobsite radio allows 5AM and 5PM stations to be saved at a time.
Possible concerns to take into consideration!
- This device may give you a bit of a heck when it comes to mp3 formats and speeds. Recommendations suggest that the mp3 should be around 128kbps. Anything above may read as an error. Also if you are using USB function, the SD card in use needs to take the FAT32 format.
Most Mp3 player will work as expected but it just worth being aware if this.
Our recommendation - The Bosch professional jobsite radio is the kind of product you acquire if you need consistent quality sound and excellent performance, great features while still getting excellent value for money.
At just under £100 at time of review, its doesn't seem to expensive when compared to similar models.
One other thing we do really like about the Bosch Professional, is its size, it's not to big so that is hard to transport and carry but it;s still large enough to produce enough power to be used in noisy situations were small radios just don't make the cut.
Overall and excellent choice for all tradesman and workshops. A brilliant choice you simply struggle to find a reason not to invest in this model which is why it was named our 'Best Pick' for job site radios.
Makita DMR104W Job Site Radio Review
**A BEST SELLER RADIO & BEST PICK RUNNER UP**
- DAB/FM enabled with up to 5 preset channels with your favourite stations.
- Robust and reliable structure (metal/plastic)
- Rich sound and variety in stations including magic, heart london, kiss, gold and capital.
- CWater resistant - can withstand up to 5 minutes of exposure to rain giving you plenty of time to get it undercover should the heavens open up.
- Loud speakers with anti-shock features
- Includes AC adapter so you can power your radio by mains
- Powdered by Li-Ion batteries (7.2V-18V) - not included but you can use the compatible batteries from your other Makita tools.
- AUX-IN option so you can connect your smartphone, Ipod, MP3 Player and listen to music from your device. (lead not included)
The Makita DMR104W is a high performance DAB Site Radio that offers excellent value for money. It provides you with a rugged design that can withstand a few grazes and bruises. The handle and the chassis are fashioned after ‘tough moulded ABS. This gives it the extra robustness it needs to survive long periods of use.
While you tune into your best FM or digital stations, you can be sure that the sound emanating from the stereo, will be strong enough to be heard from far. The stereo system, is armoured with anti-shock features, that ensure the sound quality remains constant despite heavy impact. If you get bored listening to radio stations, you can hook up your phone/mp3/iPod and play something different. This is enabled by the AUX-In function but the cable is not included but can be picked up for a couple of pounds from Amazon or Ebay.
Another attractive feature from the Makita DMR104W is that it is water resistant. This is especially compelling to those who are usually working outdoors. This feature however is not to be misconstrued, the Makita can take five minutes of rain without damage and no longer.it is good however that this site radio can take up either power options.
You can plug in directly to an available socket or depend on the battery life. The recommended batteries are Li-Ion based batteries. Unfortunately for those who are fond of switching batteries from other power tools, the Makita is not compatible with some other Makita produced batteries, you need 7.2V to 18V cluster type/ 9.6V to 18V slide-on type. Be careful.
The power options provide you with flexibility when deciding to work indoors or outdoors when mains power may not be accessible.
Possible concerns to take into consideration!
- Some of the main flaws in this product is that when played too loud, someone is unable to equalise the base. The base gets too high when the radio is played too loud, however under normal working volume for money workers this will not be an problem. Another disadvantage is that the Makita does not allow Bluetooth connectivity. Another shortcoming is that it can only pre-set 5 channels. This can be considered very limiting by most consumers where as some models can save 10.
Our recommendation - At just over £100 its more expensive than some other models but it has proven to be a very popular model is not the most popular. In fact, at the time of our review, its the best selling Jobsite radio on Amazon.co.uk with over 183 reviews.
However this does not mean it's the best jobsite radio, when compared to our 'Best Pick' the Bosch Professional GLM they are both similar in price but the Bosch does offer slightly more in terms of saved channels and in my option is a better design overall.
However if having DAB is import to you than this Makita radio is the one to go for but it does lack AM channels which may be a deal breaker for some.
Both are fantastic radios with excellent sound quality and battery life so we would highly recommend them both.
Makita STEXMR051 Battery-Powered Radio Review
**BEST SMALL COMPACT RADIO**
- ?Compact, incredibly light weight design making it ideal for transporting between jobs in your tool box.
- Powered by a 10.8 V Li-Ion battery for great performance (battery and charger purchased separately or use batteries from other 10.8v Makita tools).
- Antenna for FM range: 87.5 to 108 MHz/
- AM antenna. Range: 522 to 1620 kHz.
- Includes a headphone jack.
- Aux input for iPod and MP3 players.
- Features 2 high quality 1.5W Stereo speakers for superior sound.
What is appealing about the Makita STEXMR051 Radio is its easy portability. Its small size enables you to save a lot of storage space. The size however does not represent its power. It has two stereo speakers that produce high-quality sound that can he heard from a distance. Even in high volume, the speakers still perform well without sound distortion getting on the way.
Batteries last for a whole day under average volume.
This radio is efficient in small spaces and smaller ranges. It utilises 10.8 V Li-Ion that can run for around a full day in average volume. This is a good amount of time and will keep you entertained while you work but remember to recharge the batteries afterwards. If you are going to be working for longer periods, you need to carry extra battery packs just for continuity. You can tune in to your favourite FM/AM station.
Plug in headphones and Ipods/MP3 Players
The antenna is built to be strong enough to pick up strong signals and hold them. If you need to plug in your headphones, there is an AUX-IN option which is useful for those who use headphones, specially noise blocking models. This feature allows you to walk around with your music especially if you are working in areas that require minimum noise. They have features that can allow the device to be hung.
Possible concerns to take into consideration!
- Not a bad radio but some what limited by the fact that it only runs on batteries and is not mains powered like other larger models.
Our recommendation - The Makita STEXMR051 Radio is a high-quality product that can serve you for a long time and it is relatively cheaper than other brands in the market.
All you have to do is keep your batteries full or carry extra batteries, it is a solid inexpensive good investment for anyone looking for a small robust radio with decent sound.
The only downside was the fact that it's not also mains powered which would be very useful for most tradesman who work indoors and have access to power sockets. However the recharge batteries will give you a days music so as long as you remember to charge the batteires this should not be an issue for most.
Great little radio and probably one of the best radios of its size.? Remember it does not come with batteries, on another note the Bosch 10.8v batteries also fit this radio.
DeWalt DCR020-GB Compact Jobsite DAB Radio Review
**GREAT ROBUST MODEL**
- Compact and robust structure with robust roll cage for extra protection from falls and bangs.
- Utilises 10.8V, 18V XR and 14.4V Li-Ion batteries when enables you to use your current DeWalt batteries for other tool. (not included).
- Supports USB charging through AC only.
- DAB/FM support for crystak clear reception and sound.
- 3.5mm Auxiliary port for pluging in MP3 Player, Ipod, Phone for playing your own music.
- Tech Box for keeping your MP3, Phone, Ipod safe while plugged in.
- 12 Month Warranty for extra peace of mind.
The overall robustness of the DeWalt DCR020 Compact Jobsite Radio is superb. The device is designed to survive the accident prone environments construction sites can be. Its design also supports easy portability. The cage includes a centralised carriage system that offers enough support when in transit. It is very uncomfortable carrying weighty equipment, with wrongly positioned handles. The cage also provides a raised platform to protect the device from unnecessary dust and moisture.
Utilises DAB technology and also offers FM stations
Considering that it utilises DAB technology and also offers FM stations, you can be sure that you will never lack something to entertain you. To add, the jobsite radio also enables you to connect music from other sources through the auxiliary input. This site radio includes a USB function that you can use to play music or charge your phone as you work.
The charging station / auxiliary input has a compartment where your devices can be protected and kept away from reach while charging or playing music In addition to its durable structure and portable size. This jobsite radio can produce very loud and high-quality noise.
Battery powered or Mains for added convenience.
The powerful speakers can be battery powered which need to be purchased separately or you can use compatible DeWalt batteries you all ready have or simply plug into the mains socket using the included power cord.
These multiple power options will allow the radio to be usable in different occasional settings. The interface is also easy to control and work around without difficulty with or without work gloves.
Possible concerns to take into consideration!
- There are a few downsides to this product such as the inability to save pre-searched stations. This can be aggravating since you never get to save any favourite channels. If you want a specific channel you start tuning form the beginning till you find it. It does not support Bluetooth connectivity.
Our recommendation - The DeWalt DCR020 Compact Jobsite Radio has more advantages for you, if you are looking for powerful sound and longevity in service.
If you are looking for extra features like Bluetooth connectivity, you might want to find another model. Otherwise, this can be a valuable addition to your working life and overall is a brilliant affordable radio, we really like the added compartment which you can place your phone or mp3 player in and the usb port is handy for charging your mobile phone which is a great addition.
Overall a great radio with lots of features and great sound quality.? Would recommend to anyone looking for those extra features. This model is also a popular choice for many people on Amazon.co.uk who have left many interesting reviews.
Hitachi UR18DSL/J4 Site Radio Review
- Utilises Li-Ion, NiCad and NiMH slide and cassette batteries (9.6V, 18V) or main power.
- Listen to your favourite stations on FM or AM stations.
- Clear LCD display with digital tuning.
- Save up to 5 pre-saved stations so you all ways have your favourite stations at the touch of a button.
- Sensitive antenna for high frequency
- AUX options for your iPods and MP3s so you can all ways play your favourite music.
- USB charging port for added convenience.
- Solid rubber protected frame
- Weight: 3.3kgs
The Hitachi UR18DSL jobsite radio has very effective high performance stereo system. The quality and performance is credited to the 76mm dual speakers. These speakers are usually characterised by bass reflex structures. Even if you are jamming to hip hop tune you can feel the bass, unlike low quality speakers that are mostly treble based.
This jobsite radio offers versatility when it comes to music options. You can choose to digitally tune the AM/FM stations captured by the highly sensitive antenna, or connect your iPod/mp3 using the aux port. You and your mates can save up to 5 of your favourite stations to listen to as you labour through the day.
The design of this product allows easy mobility. This is because product structure includes a well attached handle that is centralised. The rubber protection efficiently minimises damage done to the structure through rough handling or accidental impact. To add on to its efficiency, the site radio contains USB compartments to charge your phone.
Another thing that excites us about this product is the power source options. If you are like most of us who forget to charge their batteries, you can have a moment of relief. This Hitachi jobsite radio can be plugged into a main source or just rely on batteries. At least it gives you more flexibility when it comes you have to do without one power source. It is compatible with cassette, NiCad, Li-Ion and NiMH batteries making it probably the most flexible model in terms of power source compatibility,
Once you remove the battery all the pre-saved stations disappear. Having to start all over again every time can prove frustrating.? To avoid this remember to add the 4 x AAA batteries to the radio as this is what keeps the channels saved which some people forget to do.
Possible concerns to take into consideration!
- At 3.2kgs you cannot easily walk with it for long distances without feeling the strain at some point.
- Some consumers despise that it needs transformer based power. This forces the transformer to always be next to the radio if batteries are not available. This can prove difficult in some environments and is not all ways ideal.
Our recommendation - Regardless of a few pitfalls, the Hitachi UR18DSL/J4 Site Radio, has manifested some great qualities.
While it is not necessarily our first choice, it's still an excellent radio and would be a good choice for someone who all ready uses Hitachi tools and can make use if the batteries they all ready have.
DEWALT DWST1-75663-GB Toughsystem Radio Review
**BEST OF THE BEST**
- Listen to DAB for crystal clear sound as well as AM and FM.
- 6 very loud speakers and 2 sub-woofers for optimum sound performance.
- Compatible with Toughsystem setup which mean you can stack on top of other Toughstem boxes and cases from the Dewalt Toughsystem range.
- Bluetooth technology do you can play music from your devices by wireless.
- IP54 protection against dust and water jets.
- Can be powered by AC using a standard 3 pin plug, please note a battery still needs to be in the radio when powred by mains.
- Utilises/charges DeWalt XR 10.8, 18V, 14.4V Li-ion batteries (not included)
- Can be used to charge batteries.
- USB connect for charging mobile phones and Auxiliary connections so you can play your favourite music from MP3,IPHONE,SMARTPHONES.
The DeWalt DWST1-75663 is a very impressive jobsite radio. It is endowed by two 40 watt RMS sub-woofers and 6 high quality speakers. These features including a level D amplifier and proficient digital processor, you experience unbelievable sound optimisation. It produces powerful and highly tuned sounds that will make your ears tingle. All this awesomeness is powered by alternating current.
Another notable feature is its versatility when it comes to listening options. In conjunction with the FM/DAB/AM features, you can change up your music using the Bluetooth/USB/Auxiliary functions. This feature makes this product especially attractive. If working in shifts, it allows each member to play some of their music without feeling left out. Even when working in locations with inferior radio signals you can be able to provide some musical company.
This DeWalt jobsite radio is compatible with the already established Toughsystem. It can comfortably be stacked with other Toughsystem boxes. It can also load and lock on an L-T carrier, that is Toughsystem compatible. They have made sure to comply with the 1P54 regulations. This means that it is generally protected form dust particles and even jets of water all though we would not recommend cleaning it off which a pressure washer.
The other great thing is that it can run and charge other batteries that are compatible with it. This is great news when some of your power tools juices are down. With a centralised carriage system and rubber protected corners, the DeWalt DWST1-75663 is a tough cookie. It can last through years.
Possible concerns to take into consideration!
- Its weight greatly inhabits easy mobility. It is not a product you can easily toss around. The other thing is that the storage area lid tags easily break rendering them useless when trying to lock the compartment so a little care should be taken with these. When the radio is placed upright, the battery tends to fall out, making the consumers assume that the site radio was designed to lie flat.
Our recommendation - The DEWALT DWST1-75663-GB will cost you a bit more than the others at a little under £200, however it is worth every penny if its within your budget.
We originally looked at a few models around the same price range from varous manufactures but this model, really did stand out from the rest.
DeWalt really have though of everything with this radio, from the DAB stations as well as FM stations and AM stations which some other models lack, We also like the Bluetooth connectivity for playing your music straight from your phone and MP3 players without the need for extra wires.
The small flaws can be overlooked for such a wonderful product. If you need variety, robust service and performance, this is the one for you.
If it was not for the expensive investment needed to purchase this model, this would of been our 'Best Pick', However we do understand that its probably not within every bodies price range which is why we name it our 'BEST OF THE BEST'?.
Whether your demands or needs require a small or large jobsite radio, there are many option to choose from so your sure to find a model that is right for you.
The Top 6 models we have reviewed here are made up of the best 6 which we narrowed down from 20 models we originally looked into.
We have summed up Top 3 Models below which we think would be the best choice for most people depending on there requirements.
Our Best Pick
The best choice for most tradesman.
The Bosch professional cordless radio remains our best jobsite radio. Its sturdy construction and amazing sound make us want to dance. You can be sure that the construction is durable enough to handle a few bumps and bruises. It can conveniently fit in your Bosch L-boxx, which you can easily move around with.
If you are going to work in areas where the radio signal is very weak, carry your mp3 along. You can connect music from some external sources. No matter your location you can have your Bosch site radio keep you company. Ensure you pack your battery packs and adapter cables.
Our Best Small Sized Radio Pick
The best choice for someone where the compact size is of the most importance.
The Makita STEXMR051 radio takes the best small sized radio. It is light and portable enough to be hang from a workman’s belt. You can just throw it in your tool box and be on your way work. it does not have a complicated interface so you don’t have to worry about ease of use. This small radio’s sound packs a punch for its size. If you don’t want to disturb the others around you, plug in your headphones and dance. It’s a fun sized site radio.
BEST OF THE BEST?
The best choice for someone looking for the ultimate in Work site radios.
When in need of a heavy duty and performance jobsite radio look no further than the DEWALT DWST1-75663 Toughsystem jobsite Radio. Now this is a beast worthy of its title. The 6 speakers and equally powerful sub woofers produce enough sound to be heard effectively. With the DeWalt jobsite radio, you cannot get bored. You have the options to change music from regular radio stations to other sources.
It is Bluetooth compatible and has an auxiliary option that can play music from your phone or mp3. What more would you ask for? It can charge and consume power from compatible battery packs or it can use the main socket.to make the deal even sweeter, the jobsite radio is weather protected. I don’t know about you, but we find this simply irresistible!
If its within your budget, you want find a much better model than this for under £200.