There’s a big extended family of Pure Digital DAB radios, and they all bear a strong familial resemblance – there are no ‘suspiciously like the milkman’ offspring here. This Sonus-1XT, for instance, looks so much like its Evoke-1S brother you’re entitled to wonder exactly what the extra twenty quid is for.
Boy or girl?
Well, for starters you can choose its sex. The Sonus-1XT speaks, in a male or female voice depending on your inclination. It’s not like HAL or KITT, it’s not about to get chatty or shirty with you, but it’s happy to call out the time, the station you’re listening too – that kind of thing. Handy if you can’t find your glasses.
Beyond that, it’s Pure Digital family business as usual. The Sonus-1XT is well made, easy to operate and feels nicer to use than most of the competition. It’s as simple to use as a pair of socks and, after you’ve got it set up to your satisfaction, it sounds like a Pure Digital product too.
Punchy (in a good way)
That’s to say, it sounds fine. It’s at its happiest with punchy, driving music (anything from Kerrang! to Gaydar will do), when it gets to show off its impressive handling of rhythm and tempo.
Considering it’s a mono machine – a second speaker is yours for £30 – and pretty compact, the Sonus-1XT sounds open and revealing. Any broadcast at a respectable compression ratio will be delivered with depth, weight and detail.
Voices and vocals enjoy plenty of breathing space, treble sounds don’t grind or clang like less capable designs sometimes do, and the best broadcasts can sound impressively three-dimensional. You’d know the Sonus-1XT was a chip off the old Pure Digital block even if it wasn’t able to tell you itself.