How do I Choose the Best Multiband Portable Radio?

Kasey James

When you are choosing the best multiband portable radio, you will want to pick one that has the features you will use the most. Many multiband radios can do much more than play local radio stations. Some of these radios come with alarm clocks, weather updates, phone chargers, and more. You may also want to consider the power source of the radio as well as the cost.

Man holding computer
Man holding computer

A multiband portable radio should receive excellent amplitude modulation (AM) and frequency modulation (FM) reception. But many of these radios will also receive weather and television bands as well. Some radios get good weather band reception, but also come with severe weather signals that will alert you to any storms heading your way. Some people also enjoy listening to television programs through their multiband portable radio.

You may want even more features on your multiband portable radio. Some radios have clocks on them that can be set for an alarm or a sleep timer that will turn the radio off at a preset time. There are portable radios that also come with built-in flashlights, which could be helpful at night.

Since technology is becoming more advanced, you may want a multiband portable radio that can charge your cellular phone or portable music player. Some radios will allow you to plug in your portable music player and listen to downloaded music out of the speakers. Multiband radios are becoming much more advanced, and some come with all of these features.

When you are comparison shopping to find the best multiband portable radio, you may want to consider exactly how portable it is. You probably will want it to be lightweight so that it can be easily packed. You may also want to think about its shape and where you will be storing it most of the time. Some of these radios also come with a headphone jack so that you can listen to the radio even when others are around.

Another thing to consider when buying a multiband portable radio is how it is powered. Many of these can be plugged in to an outlet, but you may also want the capability of it running on batteries. Some radios also come with a solar panel so that it will work outside as long as it is sunny. Other radios come with a crank that will charge the radio to give it power for specific amounts of time. A few radios will come with all of these power sources to give you more options.

The last thing to consider about your radio is the price you are willing to spend. It is wise to get the most features for the best price. You may also want to check if the radios you're comparing come with warranties.

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Discussion Comments


@Melonlity -- Also do some research about reliability before you buy a crank radio. I have a crank radio made by a company with a reputation for making great durable products and another one that is just cheap. The cheap one broke after a few months and won't work without being cranked constantly. The durable one has lasted over 15 years. Don't be cheap when buying a crank radio or you will regret it.


I have a crank radio that also comes with a solar panel. The solar panel works OK, but the crank radio is great. Winding it up to full will give you about two hours of power before you have to crank it again.

Keep that in mind when looking for a crank radio. You want one that will last a long time when cranked up to "full." There is a misconception that crank radios don't run for long before you have to crank them again. That is not always the case, so do some research before you buy.

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