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Roku Soundbridge Radio review

Want to wake up to the Internet? Take a closer look

Our Verdict

A useful idea but has too many niggles to fully recommend


  • Easy to set up


  • Omission of DAB radio

The Roku SoundBridge Radio draws on the technology that did so well in the heart of Soundbridge M1000 and slides into a standalone unit.

The SoundBridge Radio accesses your music in the same way that the speaker-free versions did. It connects to your wireless network and can access the music on your machines and stream Internet radio to any room in your house that's within range of your wireless network. This version can also act like a clock radio, offering a combination of AM/ FM support and an alarm clock.

Sound quality is surprisingly good for a unit this size, and the integrated mini-subwoofer produces a responsive rich bass, although audiophiles clearly won't be replacing their standard sound systems.

The unit does err on the chunky side, but at least the display automatically dims so as not too bathe you in a blue glow throughout the night. The display is far better than traditional devices, giving information on the song being played where available.

Setting up the SoundBridge Radio is straightforward and even entering SSIDs is logical and simple. Accessing the Internet radio sites is controlled in numerous ways, ranging from radio names to genres, although you'll want to setup favourites pretty quickly. The SoundBridge Radio also boasts a SD Card slot.

Despite its capabilities, you can't help feeling that the Roku SoundBridge Radio should do so much more, particularly for the incredibly high price. Why Roku hasn't integrated a DAB Radio into this unit is perplexing and surely adding an MP3-supporting CD player wouldn't have affected the price too much. Some form of audio input would have been useful too.

Ultimately it's the styling that undermines it the most - it's appearance is too cheap and tacky to look like it costs £300. It feels more like a geek toy rather than a real consumer device and in this case, that isn't a good thing.