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Daniel | 28/04/2020
The Pure Evoke H3 is one of the UK's most popular DAB radios. At a mid-level price, and with a striking solid wood cabinet, it's easy to see why so many people love the H3. But does it deserve that position, or could consumers get a bit more bang for their buck by looking at other models? We put the Evoke H3 to the test in another of our rigorous reviews. Let's jump right in!
Related: Top 10 Best DAB Radios of 2020
Since they started out in 2002, Pure have developed their own distinctive style for their DAB radios. In fact, it's largely down to them that wooden radios have become so popular again. Just look at the VQ Monty for an example of their influence. But while most brands tend to treat wood as an afterthought, Pure have taken a bolder approach. The entire body of the Evoke H3 is made from solid wood, rather than just a case. On the front, there's a plain white panel that covers the speaker, along with a screen.
The Evoke H3's controls are nice and streamlined. Instead of presenting you with an array of buttons on the front, Pure have kept things simple. Everything you need is on the top of the unit, with a neat little volume wheel in the centre. Again, this is an approach pioneered by Pure that has since been replicated by countless other brands.
The H3 also comes with a large, bright screen that's very easy to read at a distance. That's always a good thing in a DAB radio, since it shows what's playing at any given moment. If you're planning on using the Pure H3 as a bedside radio, then you'll be pleased to learn that the screen brightness can be turned down, so it won't keep you up. This is something that a lot of our customers ask about, and while it's becoming an increasingly common feature, it is still a welcome addition.
If we had to nitpick, we might say that the display of the Pure Evoke H3 looks a little dated compared to some more recent DAB radios. We understand why Pure have stuck to their guns given their popularity, but it would be nice to see Pure try something a little different, if only as a one-off.
That wooden body is more than just an aesthetic choice. It also adds to the Evoke H3's performance, helping to give audio a richer, fuller sound. There is none of the tinny-ness that plastic DAB radios often, and the sound quality is definitely above average. In the past, we've found some of Pure's Evoke range to be a little heavy-handed when it comes to bass. Thankfully they have fixed this issue with the H3, for a more balanced sound that suits a wide range of different music.
Of course, the main feature of the Pure Evoke H3 is the DAB radio mode. In practise, we found that it picks up a signal very easily, and managed to tune to all locally available stations on the first try. It's DAB+ enabled too, so you can rest assured that it's futureproof, and there's even an FM mode for local stations that aren't on digital radio.
On top of the Evoke H3, alongside the other controls, there are four preset buttons. The first three of these allow you to save any radio station for instant access. The fourth button saves the station in question to a separate menu, which can store up to 40 different stations.
But the Pure Evoke H3 is more than just a DAB radio. It also comes with built-in Bluetooth connectivity, so you can use it as a wireless speaker to listen to your own choice of music. During testing, we didn't have any issues connecting up a selection of smartphones and tablets. Some other DAB radios can be a little temperamental with Bluetooth, and lose the connection in the middle of a song. Not the H3, though- we found that it kept a steady connection throughout our testing. It can even play music from wired devices, thanks to a 3.5mm aux-in port.
We're certainly impressed by the Pure Evoke H3, and if you're thinking about buying a new DAB radio, this model is definitely worth considering. While it's a little more expensive than other models with a similar spec, its classic design and warm sound profile make it a winning choice.
This entry was posted in Reviews, Audio, DAB Radio Reviews on 28/04/2020 by Daniel.