Today we are going to take a critical look at another portable AM/FM radio manufactured by the Taiwanese company Sangean. We have extensive experience reviewing devices by this company, so let’s see how this model stacks up against other Sangean products as well as other comparable radios on the market in the price range.
The Sangean PR-D18 AM/FM-Stereo Digital Tuning Portable Radio is designed specifically to take with you on the go so that you can enjoy great reception and pleasing audio quality wherever you are.
It is available in four different color schemes; 1. Black/Grey (PR-D18BK), 2. White/Grey (PR-D18GR), 3. White/Blue (PR-D18BU) and 4. White/Red (PR-D18RD)
Though the black model is better at hiding dirt and wear, the white models are very easy to clean and are better at masking fingerprint marks. With all those options, you are sure to find one that suits you and matches well with wherever you decide you want to display it.
Throughout the article, we will highlight some of the features of this radio that we really enjoyed, go into detail about its specifications, and give our assessment of its sound output. We hope our review will address any questions or concerns you may have before purchasing the PR-D18 as well as provide you with some further details you may not even have been aware of.
Why did we like Sangean’s PR-D18 radio?
There are several aspects of the Sangean PR-D18 that either caught our eye right away or proved themselves to be valuable characteristics through continuous use:
- Appearance: At first glance, we really liked the sleek, practical design of the PR-D18. Its large LCD display and buttons make it great for users of all ages and eyesight levels. Also, the protective bumper offers a great accent for the color schemes. It doesn’t hurt that this model is available in four different color schemes so you can find the one that best suits your personality or environment.
- Usability: The PR-D18’s interface is incredibly intuitive and easy to use. As we mentioned, the large buttons and display make it usable for people of all ages, even if you have larger fingers or poor eyesight. Almost anything you want to accomplish on this device can be done with a few clicks of a button.
- Durability/Portability: One quick glance at the PR-D18 gives you the impression that Sangean knew their customers were looking for a diverse radio suited for all environments and set out to create a radio that was built to last and they succeeded. The protective bumper provides great protection against drops and falls. It would be great in a household with children because it is both easy to transport and well-protected.
- Sound Quality: We were immediately very impressed at how well this little radio was able to pump out warm, clear audio output. For a compact speaker that weighs less than a pound, the PR-D18 gets quite loud while retaining quality sound all the way up to max volume. It sounds best in smaller, indoor spaces, but can also sustain itself on its own for more intimate outdoor gatherings.
The Sangean PR-D18 Review: A Closer Look
The Sangean PR-D18 is available in four different color schemes; black/grey, white/grey, white/blue, and white/red. Though the black model is better at hiding dirt and wear, the white models are very easy to clean and are better at masking fingerprint marks. With all those options, you are sure to find one that suits you and matches well with wherever you decide you want to display it.
It is very compact and portable at just 6.50”x1.40”x4.20” and weighs just 12.5 ounces. Despite its size, it still feels well-built and the protective rubber bumper makes it a versatile choice to take with you wherever you go.
This radio is ideal for taking with you to a barbecue, camping, or simply out into the backyard. It even offers a Lock Switch so that you can move around without having to worry about your playback being interrupted by accidentally pushing a button.
The interface of the PR-D18 is very straightforward and easy to read. Older users won’t have to strain their eyes to read the LCD display (2”x0.6”) and can easily navigate the large buttons, which are spread apart to make them more user-friendly. The LCD display also has a brightness control button so you can adjust the backlight for environments with various levels of lighting.
The PR-D18 gives you FM access to channels 87.5 – 108 and has excellent FM reception with the telescopic antenna on the back. It also offers AM channels 520 – 1710, though the AM reception is not quite as good as the FM is. It does not have a plug through which you can wire an extra, more powerful antenna to it for improved reception.
There are 10 memory preset options (5 for AM and 5 for FM) controlled by the 5 buttons on the interface. There is also an Auto Scan feature to help you find your favorite stations in your particular area. Particularly on the FM band, it has amazing sensitivity that allows you to find distant stations and access them with ease.
The PR-D18 is also great for keeping by your bedside and using as an alarm clock. You have the option to either wake up to the standard HWS (Humane Wake System) buzzer or pre-set your favorite station.
Those who are not fond of waking up to the radio should know that the HWS raises the volume slowly so you are not disturbed from your sleep immediately by a suddenly loud buzzer. You are able to program two alarms at once so that if you and your partner have to rise at different times, you don’t have to manually change the alarm upon waking.
This model also offers Snooze and Sleep Functions. You can postpone your alarm for a short period by pushing any of the buttons but Power. The Sleep function can be set for intervals of 15, 30, 45, 60, 90, or 120 minutes so you can fall asleep listening to your radio and not have to worry about it playing all through the night and wasting battery.
You can choose to either power your PR-D18 by plugging it in with the AC adaptor or using AA batteries for music on the go. Be aware that some vendors sell the AC adaptor separately so make sure to check the contents of your order before confirming. This model is designed for low battery consumption so you can really stretch the battery life, particularly if you are someone who listens to lower volumes.
Now let’s get to the truly important part of any comprehensive radio review; the sound quality. The PR-D18 comes equipped with a 2.25” embedded speaker which you can see on the interface. The speaker offers 1W of output power whether it is plugged in or being powered by batteries and 8ohms of impedance. For a portable speaker of its size, it really produces a clear, warm sound, especially when tuned to a station with excellent reception.
If you are someone who prefers listening to the radio more privately or just really enjoys the sound of your headphones, there is also an earphone jack through which you can plug in the speakers of your choice. The earphone jack offers 1.5 + 1.5 mW of output, making for a crispy, clear listening experience.
Our Final Thoughts on the Sangean PR-D18 review
Overall, the Sangean PR-D18 delivers what it sets out to do; provide listeners with a highly usable experience of high-quality sound output at an affordable price. This model is built for a wide range of users due to how easy it is to navigate, how durable it is, and how well it is able to get reception in most areas. If you are a true audiophile looking for sound quality that will blow your mind, this is probably not the radio for you. But for most of us who are simply looking for an enjoyable listening experience without breaking the bank, the PR-D18 is an excellent option.
We would recommend this radio in particular to anyone who has children or an elderly relative that enjoys radio because of how durable it is and how easy it is to get it to do exactly what you want. There are no complicated menus or tiny buttons to try to navigate. Just a straightforward interface that is well-protected to be suited for nearly any environment or activity.
For around $50, the Sangean PR-D18 offers excellent value for the sound quality it is capable of. What it lacks in extensive features, it makes up for in functionality. Now that you are more aware of exactly what this model has to offer and how it delivers on all of its specifications and features, you can make your purchase with the confidence of knowing you will get what you pay for. Regardless of whether you decide to purchase the PR-D18, we hope that this deep dive into all its facets will help inform your search for the perfect portable radio to suit your needs!
Any Further Questions?
Q-1. Is this an HD Radio?
It is not. If you are looking for an HD radio, Sangean does offer other models like the HDR14 and HDR16 that offer some truly stellar sound quality.
Q-2. What is the battery life when powering it with AA batteries?
This varies depending on how loud you like to listen to the radio. However, at an average volume, one set of AA batteries should last for around 35-45 hours of playtime.
Q-3. Sangean PR-D5 vs Sangean PR-D18