AM/FM portable pocket radio for visually impaired elderly

E5911

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Hi all:
Was not sure where to post this, I figure this is the best area ...
My mom is near 90 and loves to listen to NPR on FM at night , also likes to listen to Clear Channel Am stations occasionally
She currently has a Crane Pocket AM FM radio she is not too thrilled with.
Any suggestions on a Pocket radio with good FM reception that does not need a extendable antenna?
 

iMONITOR

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Would something like this help your mom?



Sangean PR-D17 AM/FM-RDS Portable Radio Specially Designed for The Visually Impaired with Helpful Guided Voice Prompts, Black, 10 Station Presets (5 AM, 5 FM), Stereo/Mono Switch, Alarm Timer


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The new Sangean PR-D17 is a very special radio. This top quality AM, FM, FM stereo radio with twin speakers is designed for the visually impaired. It has high-contrast, large yellow rotary tuning and volume control knobs, preset buttons with raised symbols to aid in identification and thoughtful voice prompts of all controls that announce all functions in female English or Spanish. Additionally, the tuned frequency and band is voice announced as you tune the indented tuning knob. There is no guessing the frequency.

It has a large and easy-to-read backlit LCD display that highlights RDS information, frequency, signal strength, battery status and alarm symbols. It has a 200 mm ferrite AM antenna for the best possible AM reception. The controls are very easy to use and you get 5 presets for AM and 5 for FM. The preset buttons are marked in Braille (sans number indicator). And you can auto scan stations. The RDS technology can display station name, call sign, song title or other transmitted information, plus it can set the clock automatically. There is a stereo / mono slide switch. There is a built in clock timer with sleep function and humane wake up system to buzzer or radio. The left side of the radio has a 3.5mm auxiliary input and a 3.5mm stereo earphone jack. There is a fold-down handle for easy transport. The perfect solution for the radio enthusiast who is visually impaired.

This radio includes an 9VDC 700 mA [+] AC adapter and can also be operated from six alkaline or NiMH C batteries (not supplied). The batteries load from the back panel. Output power is 800mW x 800mW. 10.5 x 5.5 x 2.5 inches (260 x 135 x 63 mm). One year limited manufacturer's warranty.
 

MDScanFan

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It will be difficult to find a pocket AM/FM radio with decent FM reception that does not use an extendable antenna. All of the decent pocket radios I am aware of either use an extendable antenna or they use a headphones or a wire plugged into the headphone jack. I really dislike using the latter due to inconsistent reception.

What drives the requirement for a pocket radio? How about the extendable antenna? Before I saw the request for no external antenna I was thinking the Eton Mini.
 

WA8ZTZ

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Feb 23, 2014
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If it can possibly be other than a pocket portable then the PR-D17 posted above by iMonitor would be a good choice.
Good sensitivity AM and FM (especially AM with the large ferrite antenna excellent for nighttime AM clear channel listening),
large easy to read display, RDS on FM, good battery life, presets, plenty of nice audio, large controls,
overall a great radio for an older person. You may have to get it initially set up for your mom but after that she would probably
be OK on her own with it.
 

p1879

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Mar 15, 2004
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My vision without contacts is around 20/900, and I like to listen in bed at night too. I thought my pocket Tecsun pl310 was really good at this, except to get decent audio one needed headphones. I am now using the Tecsun PL-880 and it works great for me. It is bigger than a "pocket"radio, but has great audio and it is so nice and easy to flip through fav FM stations in memory mode with the smooth tuning control. I usually spend some time each night tuning around AM Broadcast and am very happy with reception, getting Cuba and Canada at night.

I too dislike using the whip antenna, and so I use the wire antenna supplied with the 880 and it works well with fm. I am concerned I will fall asleep and poke my eye with a whip, or bend it all up. I think a 4' wire connected to a right angle antenna plug (so as not to lever upon the connection when used in bed) would work fine for most local FM stations. The stock Tecsun plug for the external antenna is a little protrusive, so am thinking low profile or right angle plug might create less stress on the jack.

The sales guy at Universal once told me the ant. jack on the PL880 does nothing for FM, but my experience differs. If true, some wire might at least be lending counterpoise, but my signal levels using wire/ext jack convince me the wire does work pretty well.
 

Boombox

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Sangean has a pocket radio with a small speaker and headphone jack (which also is like a Walkman), which reportedly has good FM and AM reception. It's yellow, like a Sports Walkman, and has a fairly large (for its size) digital readout. It's the DT400W, and has four controls -- Power, Band, and tune up / tune down.

Around $50 or so online. It may be worth looking into if the pocket size is the primary requirement.
 
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Sangean has a pocket radio with a small speaker and headphone jack (which also is like a Walkman), which reportedly has good FM and AM reception. It's yellow, like a Sports Walkman, and has a fairly large (for its size) digital readout. It's the DT400W, and has four controls -- Power, Band, and tune up / tune down.

Around $50 or so online. It may be worth looking into if the pocket size is the primary requirement.
I checked out this radio just now.
It's listed for about $55 and gets great reviews.

The only downside is that it runs on batteries. Thanks for the tip! 😊
 

MDScanFan

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USA
I have used a similar Sangean model. My biggest annoyance with the radio, and similar models, is that headphones or an external wire is required for FM reception. When I want to sit it on a table I found i usually needed to get the wire vertical to get decent reception. So I would loop the wire over something nearby or tape it up. If I want to move the radio to a new location then I would have to take down the antenna and prop it back up in the new spot. A radio with a telescoping whip would not have this issue. If I am walking around then it is okay - reception does vary as you move around but so would an antenna with a telescoping whip.

As long as you are okay with that "feature" then that radio seems like a good option.

Sangean has a pocket radio with a small speaker and headphone jack (which also is like a Walkman), which reportedly has good FM and AM reception. It's yellow, like a Sports Walkman, and has a fairly large (for its size) digital readout. It's the DT400W, and has four controls -- Power, Band, and tune up / tune down.

Around $50 or so online. It may be worth looking into if the pocket size is the primary requirement.
 

Patch42

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Feb 14, 2008
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I checked out this radio just now.
It's listed for about $55 and gets great reviews.

The only downside is that it runs on batteries. Thanks for the tip! 😊
If you're inclined to go that way, you might want to look at the Sangean DT-800. I just picked one up on Amazon for about $55 (for a black one, yellow was more for some reason). The DT-800 can recharge NiMH batteries using a USB connection. (Wall wart charger included.) The plus being you could use it like a plug-in radio if you wanted. There are more buttons, but not so many more that it should be confusing.
 
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