Review: The VQ Monty DAB digital radio & Bluetooth speaker PLUS giveaway.
I absolutely love listening to music. Whether I’m listening to my car radio, the radio in my kitchen, or listening to my favourite Spotify playlists on my PC or iPod, I prefer my day to have its own soundtrack. Although we have a couple of radios in our home, I’ve been looking for a radio for our new extension for some time. I wanted one to compliment our open plan living space’s Scandi feel. Well, guess what? I think I’ve found the perfect candidate. In fact, I think my room has been waiting for this radio. ‘Hello, VQ Monty DAB digital radio. Welcome to your new home!’
My musical memories.
In a previous post (HERE), I told you about my love of the movies and shared some of my favourite movie moments and talked about the memories they evoke. Like movies, music stirs up so many memories for me, too. Lately, they’ve come flooding back as I’ve rediscovered some of my favourite songs whilst listening to the radio in my car. I overruled my daughters’ preference for Kiss FM, and have enjoyed some of the classics with my own choice of station, Heart 80s! Listening to these ‘blasts from the past’ reminds me of the time I first heard them. In a moment, I’m transported back to my teenage years, where I’m lying on my bed flicking through Smash Hits magazine as my record player blasts out the 12-inch version of China in your hand by T’Pau.
My car journeys and home life have been transformed since discovering Heart 80’s. Instead of my girls singing every word of the latest Justin Bieber tune, it’s me and Cyndi Lauper blasting out ‘Girls just wanna have fun’ at the top of our voices!
So what are the songs that roll back the years for me?
1. Eternal Flame – The Bangles.
I absolutely loved this song. I had the vinyl single. Mum bought it for me, but it wasn’t a straight forward purchase because she asked for ‘that new song by The Bracelets.’ Muuuuuummmmmm! I’m amazed I didn’t wear out the grooves on that record (or my vocal chords). I played it over and over and over again, listening to Susannah Hoff’s fantastic voice soar higher and higher.
2. Karma Chameleon – Culture Club.
Karma Chameleon was the first single I ever bought for myself. It’s funny how some bloke dressed like a crazed Geisha, with make-up troweled onto his face didn’t seem in the least bit odd in the 1980’s! And what does that song even mean? Who cares, I loved it back then!
3. Take on me. A-Ha.
Remember A-Ha Or should I say ‘Ahhhhhh’? I was in love with Morten Harkett, the handsome Norwegian lead singer with his beautifully chiselled cheekbones. ‘Take on me’, with its catchy synthesiser tune was one of my faves as a teenager. At the time, the music video for the song was considered ‘ground-breaking’. I remember being fascinated watching a pencil sketch version of Morten fell in love with a real girl as he sang a nonsensical love song to her. ‘Take on me, take me on’? What does that even mean??!!
4. China in your hand. T’Pau.
Don’t you just love Carol Decker?! T’Pau were the first band I ever saw live. I drove all the way to Leeds (University!) to see them play. This song was so epic and so different with its orchestral strings plucking away and the literary lyrics about Frankenstein’s monster or some such thing! It was number one for a million years!
Don’t push too far your dreams are china in your hand. – Carol Decker, philosopher and lead singer of T’Pau.
5. Club Tropicana. Wham.
When I was a teenager, you were either Team ‘Wham!’ or Team ‘Duran Duran.’ I was firmly in the Wham! camp, not being a fan of Simon Le Bon’s angst-laden, whining voice (Sorry, Simon). Wham! Make it Big was the first LP I bought and this song, from their first album, ‘Wham! Fantastic’, was one that stuck in my mind. The lyrics confused me, though, ‘Club Tropicana drinks are free. Fun and sunshine, there’s enough for everyone. All that’s missing is the sea…’ Except, the sea wasn’t missing at all! You could distinctly hear the waves crashing on the shore in the background!!!
Ah, memories! There are many, many more songs that provided the soundtrack for my youth, but that’s for another post. It’s time I introduced you to Monty, VQ’s gorgeous DAB digital radio with FM, Bluetooth and alarm clock.
VQ Monty DAB Digital radio: First impressions.
What can I say? The Monty DAB/DAB+ Digital Radio (available in real oak or walnut casing) with FM, Bluetooth and alarm clock is a stunning little radio. Often, when I’m searching for something to ‘fit’ my home or room, such as a piece of furniture, ornament, or accessory, I fear I won’t be able to find the perfect item, the one I imagine in my head. Amazingly, incredibly, the Monty in its real oak casing is perfect for our new extension.
Not only does the real oak case and white face of the Monty radio match our Scandi style sideboard and dining table, the grey cloth speaker grille matches the cloth on our dining chairs, too! How cool is that?
For the first time in a long time, I’ve found a product with looks and styling that surpass the one I imagined in my head.
See what I mean?
The thing that impresses me the most about the Monty’s design is the attention to detail and little touches. This is a radio that has been thoughtfully designed, from its little cork feet to the attractive grey fabric strap with its stylish fastening studs embossed with the VQ logo.
The Monty may be small, but it’s packed with features and functionality. As well as a DAB/DAB+ digital radio, there’s an FM analogue radio option too. What’s more, as well as listening to all your favourite stations via DAB/DAB+ and FM, you can save them to one of the 30 preset channels, too.
Being a fan of music streaming apps like Spotify, Bluetooth connectivity is a must-have feature for my perfect radio. The Monty offers Bluetooth wireless connectivity so I can listen to podcasts, online content or stream music via my smartphone or tablet. Better still, I can charge them using the integrated USB socket.
Don’t be fooled by the Monty’s compact speaker, either. Powered by a 10W single ultra-wide speaker driver, it packs a punch that’s sure to fill any room in your home with crystal clear sound. Plus, with the inclusion of MyEQ, you also have control of bass and treble, either independently or via presets.
The Monty DAB digital radio is the perfect radio for the bedroom as well, with dual His and Hers/Week or Weekend alarms with snooze and sleep timer.
If you like to take your music with you, either around the home or out to the park, you can also buy the optional VQ rechargeable battery pack, (£19.99 from the VQ website).
Like the Monty radio, the rechargeable battery pack is beautifully packaged. I really appreciate it when brands pay careful attention to the little details like package design, as well as the product itself.
Does the Monty DAB digital radio’s Bluetooth function and sound quality match its good looks?
When I first laid eyes on the Monty DAB digital radio, with its real oak casing, it was love at first sight. However, when it comes to choosing a radio, it doesn’t matter how swoonworthy its looks are if it’s a dud in terms of sound quality. Does the Monty, designed and engineered here in Britain, sound as good as it looks? The answer is ‘absolutely!’ I can’t believe how good this little radio sounds. Gone are the days where you had to adjust the dial on the radio like a professional safe cracker, to minimise the crackles and interference. This radio offers crystal clear sound on all the stations I tried. There’s no interference and no signal dropping.
Crank the radio up to full volume and there’s no noticeable distortion, either. Instead, the full-bodied sound of Heart 80s (other stations are available) fills our large open plan extension.
Connecting the iPod to the Monty via Bluetooth is a breeze. Simply select Bluetooth via the Mode button and then look for MONTY in the list of Bluetooth devices on your phone and select it. Mine paired quickly and easily without any issues, enabling me to listen to my favourite Spotify playlist, Hot Country.
The VQ Monty DAB digital radio and Bluetooth speaker: The verdict.
I’ve reviewed a number of products since starting my blog, but, hands-down, this small but perfectly formed Monty DAB digital radio is my absolute favourite.
It’s made for our home in terms of its looks and styling. Better than that, this little beauty delivers crystal clear sound, whether I’m singing along to one of the dozens of DAB radio stations or streaming my favourite Spotify playlists from my smartphone via Bluetooth.
Are there any shortcomings with the Monty? I only had a few minor issues with mine. A couple of the rubber studs that hide the screws attaching the cork feet to the radio worked themselves loose. Also, the end of the power cable that inserts into the power slot on the back of the radio doesn’t seem to push all the way in, leaving a little bit of metal showing. It still functions perfectly and isn’t loose – not sure if it’s an issue with mine or if it’s supposed to be like that, though. However, these are minor niggles, the Monty really is a beautifully made, impressive bit of kit.
If you’re looking for a sleek, contemporary, feature-rich DAB digital radio that delivers great quality sound, you can’t go wrong with the Monty DAB digital radio and Bluetooth speaker. All you have to do is decide whether you want to offer Monty oak, or his handsome brother, Monty walnut, a place in your home.
Win a VQ Monty DAB digital radio with FM, Bluetooth and alarm clock (choice of real oak or walnut) worth £99.99.
The lovely folks at VQ are offering one of my readers the chance to win a Monty DAB digital radio with FM, Bluetooth and alarm clock (Shown here in walnut). Even better, you can choose between the oak or walnut case. Please note: the radio comes with a mains adapter, the battery pack is sold separately.
For your chance to win, simply enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway below:
Competition terms and conditions:
- There is one prize of an exclusive VQ Monty DAB & DAB+ Digital Radio with FM, Bluetooth & Alarm Clock in a choice of oak or walnut for one winner.
- The prize is non-transferable and no cash alternative is offered.
- Up to 6 entries per person. All are compulsory methods of entry.
- Open to UK residents aged 18 and over.
- Competition is closed to employees and relatives of Maflingo and VQ.
- Entries must be received by 11.59pm on 7th September 2017.
- The winners will be chosen at random and notified by email on 8th September 2017.
- If the winner does not respond within 7 days a new winner will be drawn.
- Maflingo reserves the right to amend or withdraw the competition at any time without notice or liability.
- Entry to this competition confirms that participants have read, understood and agree to be bound by these Terms and Conditions.
- This competition is governed by the laws of England and any dispute shall be governed by the English courts.
To find out more about the VQ range of radios and speakers, Visit VQ : HERE.
VQ kindly provided me with their Monty DAB digital Radio for the purposes of this review. As always, the views and opinions expressed here are my own honest assessment.
This competition is listed on the loquax.com website.