This article will help you choose the best dab radio for an elderly person, however, if you are looking for a dab radio for someone who is recently retired and might need a radio to listen too whilst cooking in the kitchen or pottering about the garden check out our guide here.
When choosing a dab radio for an elderly person you have to keep a few things in mind that may vary from person to person and depend on the age of the person. It is recommend that when purchasing a radio that you look at the individuals specific needs which may include:
Ease of use
Digital radios can have many different functions along with the actual radio such as bluetooth, usb, ipod dock, alarm clock, fm am, mp3, auxiliary input, etc. Many elderly people will not have any use for these extra functions and they may indeed just add extra confusion for a user who is not very savvy with technology.
Do they need a large display?
A large display on a radio will be necessary to help those with sight problems. At a minimum the user must be able to see the display to be able to choose the right station and to adjust the volume. It can become very frustrating for an elderly person to mess around with modern technology without being able to properly see what they are trying to do.
Do they need large buttons?
Large buttons on a DAB radio can not only help those who can’t read the text on smaller buttons but it will also help people who have trouble with their fine motor skills or who have arthritis and aren’t as agile as they used to be. Large buttons can usually be programmed to do one task at a time making the radio easier to use and less confusing for the user.
Do they need a Loudspeaker?
Elderly users who are hard of hearing will obviously need a radio that they can hear properly. Having a loudspeaker built into the unit is a must and being able to control the volume of the loud speaker is also very important so that they can adjust the sound levels to suit their hearing needs. Listening to a digital radio through headphones may work better for some users but remember that this will limit their ability to hear other things such as phone calls and the doorbell.
Although most elderly people will have a set room for their radio they may from time to time need to move the radio. Larger radios may hinder that ability to move the radio about especially if they are cumbersome and do not have a handle. Depending on the person it may be better for them to have a lightweight handheld radio that will sit in their pocket so that they can take it wherever they want – the only downside is that if they have memory problems or dementia a small personal radio may be easily misplaced and hard to find again.
Based on our research we find the following DAB radios to be most suited to elderly users:
Roberts Radio Play10 DAB/DAB+/FM Digital Radio with Simple Presets
Our top pick is the Roberts play 10 portable radio that ticks all the boxes mentioned above. The DAB/DAB+ radio has a large backlit display, has multiple pre-sets to save stations on the easy to use buttons and is small and lightweight (350g) with an attached handle making it easy to carry. It has a built in loudspeaker and also has a headphone socket so the user can listen via headphones if they prefer.
Roberts Elise DAB FM RDS Digital Radio
The Roberts Elise digital radio is also ideal for an elderly user. It comes with 9 station pre-sets and even a favourite button allowing the user to very simply select their favourite station with a touch of a button. It has an easy to navigate menu and a large clear LCD display and also features an easy to use large rotary volume control. Users can listen via the built in loudspeaker or headphone socket provided.
One downside to this model however is that it is bigger and heavier (650g) than the Roberts Play 10 and does not come with an attached handle.
During our research we have come across two other models of easy to use radio. Both however do not have DAB and are therefore only FM radios but both are suited for use by an elderly person.
RD-L80 Mini FM radio
The RD-L80 Mini FM Radio has an ultra large screen making it very easy for the user to see, the controls are large silicone buttons so are also easy to see and soft to touch. A useful bonus feature of this unit is that it includes an auto shut-off feature meaning it can be pre-set to turn itself off at certain time intervals so the user can set and easily fall asleep without worrying that the radio will stay on all night.
This radio is a small and lightweight (240g) and also comes with a handle attached.
Y-618 Mini speaker FM radio
The Y-618 Mini Speaker FM Radio is similar to the RD-L80 with the exception of a large screen. It slightly sacrifices the larger screen but adds another speaker to the setup for a better sound quality. It also boasts that the included antenna gives a superior quality signal.
This model is also small and lightweight (222g) and has an included handle. It has the same large soft silicone buttons and the ability to plug in headphones as well.
Thanks for reading our reviews – one thing not included in this article is the fact that many older people may still enjoy listening to casette or cd – we have covered this topic in our article about DAB radios with cd players which you can find here. You might also find our review articles on personal radios and retro radios also useful for an elderly person.