9 ​​Best Small Radios: Compact, Modern & Portable

Today’s technology combines Bluetooth, AM and FM radio, and more into compact, retro units that are super cool. 

There are so many portable radios out there, but many are poor-quality and won’t last you very long. Small radios, also referred to as transistor radios, are becoming quite popular. 

small radio

Check out our recommendations to find the best radio for you to jam out to

Our Shortlist for Best Small Radios

1. Best Overall: Studebaker SB2000TS Portable AM/FM Radio

The Studebaker radio is a charming little unit that offers great sound and clarity. Its range of functions, portability, and clear sound make it our most well-rounded small radio. 

The radio is compact and easy to transport with its handle. Customer reviews confirm the reception is strong, and the radio picks up both FM and AM radio waves excellently. 

The radio also has a headphone jack, so you may listen privately if you want. The two listening options make it even more convenient in many situations.

Main Points:

  • Headphone jack
  • Clear sound
  • Lightweight

2. The Simplest to Use: DreamSky Portable AM FM Radio

The DreamSky Radio is super lightweight and easy to take with you anywhere.

It weighs less than two pounds and has a convenient handle that folds down. The radio has crystal clear reception, and customers rave about the sound quality. 

Clear reception has to do with the strength of the antenna’s ability to receive radio waves.

The radio is battery-operated and has an AC adapter to recharge, giving you a long-lasting listening experience. 

But if you want to listen to your favorite radio station wherever you go, the DreamSky radio is portable, intuitive, and affordable.

The style is like a cross between retro and modern, so you get that classic radio feel but with sturdy, modern materials. 

Main Points:

  • Easy to operate
  • Quality sound
  • Lightweight

3. The Most Affordable: ByronStatics Portable Radio AM FM

The ByronStatics radio is a vintage-looking portable unit that is the perfect small radio for a kitchen or patio.

The radio is available in cream or black and has a lovely aesthetic that everyone will love. 

The small radio is simple to use and tuned with small, charming knobs on the top, just like an old radio.

The small FM radio has powerful built-in speakers, plus a headphone jack, for a clear and strong sound, even outside or at the beach. 

Main Points:

  • Excellent speakers and sound
  • Clear reception
  • Headphone jack

4. The Most Retro Design: Victrola Retro Wood Bluetooth FM/AM Radio

The Victrola Wood radio is the epitome of vintage meeting modernity as the radio looks like it was plucked from a suburban home in the ‘50s but has Bluetooth capability.

The fabric speaker cover makes this one the most vintage radio on our list. 

It doesn’t have a handle and doesn’t look portable, but the small radio only weighs about three pounds. The compact size makes it easy to put in a bag and be on your way!

Main Points:

  • Bluetooth capability
  • Retro design

5. The Most Functions: Soundance FM Radio

The Soundance wireless radio is for people looking for a modern, sleek design for their small radio. 

The 3-in-1 design offers Bluetooth capability, FM radio reception, and an alarm clock. It provides all these functions in a convenient and attractive unit that can fit on your nightstand comfortably.

It boasts at least an 8-hour charge, so you can listen to your favorite songs even if you spend the whole day away from an outlet. 

Main Points:

  • Three functions
  • Modern design
  • Long-lasting power bank

6. The Most Portable: PRUNUS J-160 Transistor AM FM Radio

The PRUNUS AM FM radio is a small, portable unit that screams with ‘60s style. It comes in a hot red that will always make it easy to find.

This radio is super small, making it easy to bring places and keep in your car or travel bag. 

The downside many reviews mention is that the small radio is difficult to charge. It needs to be monitored when plugged in, and the sound quality significantly diminishes when the speaker charges. 

Main Points:

  • Colorful
  • Good Reception
  • Difficult to charge

7. Best for Bluetooth: Vintage Radio Retro Bluetooth Speaker

This small radio with Bluetooth combines the best of both worlds. Your friends will wonder what antique shop you got the radio at and be in awe as you put on your favorite playlist. 

The vintage aesthetic is charming and nostalgic, which makes it a thoughtful present for the radio.

The attractive wood finish makes it the perfect small radio for offices and desks because it is lovely to look at and compact. 

Main Points:

  • Compact
  • Wood finish
  • Good reception

8. The Most Stylish: ClearClick Classic Vintage Retro Style AM/FM Radio

The ClearClick radio is easy to use and operate, making it the perfect gift for people that don’t want something overly complicated. 

The radio receives AM and FM signals but doesn’t have any Bluetooth capability or auxiliary cord. So if you were looking for a radio to blast your playlist, this isn’t the one for you.

Main Points:

  • Clear reception
  • Stylish and retro

9. Best for Home Use: SYLVANIA SKCR2713 Under Counter CD Player with Clock Radio

The SYLVANIA radio is a sleek design that fits under counters or cabinets. This is the perfect small radio for kitchens or garages.

However, the radio does not have AM reception, which some people will be disappointed about.

The radio is small but not portable. It is made to be mounted from above and would be awkward to transport from one place to another. Like heavy-duty speakers, this one is meant to stay put. 

Main Points:

  • Not portable
  • Plays CDs
  • Modern style
  • Has clock

Final Thoughts 

Whether you want to listen to your tunes at the beach or have your favorite podcast keep you company while you do yard work, these small radios are for you.

They allow you to bring your music with you anywhere packed in an adorable, retro radio. 

In our opinion, the best overall radio is the Studebaker SB2000TS Portable AM/FM Radio. It has an amazing sound quality; it’s lightweight and easy to transport, and allows listening to music through headphones


Born and raised in Austin, David is a dedicated writer and avid fragrance lover. When he's not trying out perfumes, he enjoys traveling and exploring new restaurants.

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