Good clock radio for listening to NPR Morning Edition
May 19, 2016 7:34 AM   Subscribe

I'd like to be able to listen to NPR Morning Edition seamlessly as I walk around the house in the morning and I don't want to wear headphones. Thus I am looking for a clock radio that a) gets good radio reception, b) can be programmed to automatically switch on at 7am and off at 9am, and c) is relatively inexpensive so I can afford one for each room (I'll need about five, I think). Any recommendations? Thanks!
posted by Jacqueline to Shopping (12 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
 
Not sure what "relatively inexpensive" is, but i would buy something like this Sony Radio, leave the batteries out, and plug it in through an outlet timer like this. That's a total of less than $30 per. You could definitely find a cheaper radio option, but I think the "on for exactly 2 hours" thing is going to be the hard part of your search, so just go for "radio on AC power" and do the timing separately.
posted by brainmouse at 8:09 AM on May 19, 2016


I don't know if this matters, but the problem with cutting power is that the clock on the radio would never be right.
posted by tmacdonald at 8:36 AM on May 19, 2016


The only reason I wanted the clock part of the clock radio was so that I could set it to automatically turn on/off at certain times. So a non-clock radio on an outlet timer could also work.

If it's easier/less expensive to set up some sort of house-wide wireless audio system, I'd also be open to that.

Basically, I just want NPR to play housewide every morning and I'm open to whatever technological system would make that work inexpensively.
posted by Jacqueline at 8:53 AM on May 19, 2016


I have an oooold sony dream machine clock radio, gets pretty good reception, and just got another at a thrift shop. So that's the bathroom and kitchen. A neverlate 7 day alarm clock/ radio in my bedroom also has decent reception, and I like being able to set an early alarm for Thursdays, when I have to be early. The bedroom and bathroom radios go off when I should wake up, the kitchen one is set a bit later. They will stay on for 90 minutes or so, then I just hit sleep if I'm still listening.

Some Android smartphones have FM radio, not just streaming over the Internet, but plain old FM. I loved this feature when I had it on an old walkphone (srsly) and it will be on my next phone, if at all possible.
posted by theora55 at 8:58 AM on May 19, 2016


If it's easier/less expensive to set up some sort of house-wide wireless audio system, I'd also be open to that.

Not cheap, but Sonos has changed my life. I started with just one speaker, and quickly moved to one for every room in the house.
posted by roll truck roll at 9:21 AM on May 19, 2016 [2 favorites]


I use an Amazon Echo for this. It's not cheap but I can say, "Alexa, play NPR" and it'll start playing my local affiliate automatically. They also sell Echo Dots which are cheaper that are meant to be used in other rooms (again, not very cheap and I'm not sure if you need the Echo to use it.)
posted by girlmightlive at 9:39 AM on May 19, 2016 [1 favorite]


ipod Nanos - 5th & 6th generation - have fm radios built into them. You could get one of those on ebay, get a wearable arm strap, and wear it around the house. You don't necessarily have to bother with headphones either - looks like they have a tiny external speaker.
posted by hydra77 at 12:13 PM on May 19, 2016 [1 favorite]


This is what I have and it's perfect.
posted by lecorbeau at 12:36 PM on May 19, 2016


I've had several versions of the Sony Dream Machine like this though this is the current version. A few of them had 2 alarms, but they don't all have this and and it appears the Dream Machine name has applied to a very large variety of models. The alarm - if not stopped manually - will run for 59 minutes. So you could set an alarm at 7 and another at 8 for a nearly uninterrupted 2 hour on/off cycle. They are cheap and get good FM and AM reception.
posted by Clinging to the Wreckage at 1:40 PM on May 19, 2016


ipod Nanos - 5th & 6th generation - have fm radios built into them. You could get one of those on ebay, get a wearable arm strap, and wear it around the house. You don't necessarily have to bother with headphones either - looks like they have a tiny external speaker.

I have an old Nano and it won't play radio unless headphones are plugged in. If I try, it says "No Radio Signal. Please plug in headphones for radio reception."
posted by Frenchy67 at 4:39 AM on May 20, 2016


I have the Amazon Tap. It's small and portable so you could take it room to room. It would play NPR on command and stop when you say "stop". About $100, you'd get at least 3 days worth of NPR without having to plug it in.
posted by donnagirl at 8:20 AM on May 20, 2016


I have Sony Dream machine, current version, and it does exactly this well, and easily. I use it to wake me up to NPR, and it shuts off an hour later, so I can leave the hosue and not worry about it blaring all day. Plus, it dials up to a level that's really loud.
posted by Miko at 8:33 AM on May 20, 2016


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