What Hi Fi Sound and Vision Mon, 20 Sep 2004, 2:00pm

Goodmans 1104HDAB

Tested at £75
100100
5

A lot of micro for not much money

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For

  • Price
  • DAB radio
  • decent sonic delivery
  • diminutive dimensions
  • neat looks
  • respectable build

Against

  • Sonic character is a little bright
  • slight hiss at very low volume

We have a third certainty in life: to the inevitability of ‘death' and ‘taxes', you can now add ‘you can afford this Goodmans'. Yes, this CD/digital radio micro costs just £75, and it actually manages to look stylish with it.
It also feels solid, and the supplied glass stand provides a neat little base – ideal for use on a kitchen worktop. And a bedroom or kitchen is where we see this compact system living – as does Goodmans, judging by other extra features such as a clock and alarm.

There's more good news: the 1104HDAB sounds great for the price. The machine benefits from a decent warm-up, which eases the initially bright treble, even if the Goodmans' sonic character always remains slightly spiky. Another constant is the discernable hiss at very low volume, but that shouldn't be a major problem during normal use.

DAB reception is fairly robust – fix the supplied aerial to the wall for best results – and radio delivery is fine. The Goodman's lacks the rich sound of Pure's excellent Evoke-1XT, but that £100 portable doesn't play CDs, nor does it include stereo speakers.

Switch to CD, and the 1104HDAB maintains composure even at high volumes, happily pumping out the musical genre of your choice. There are various sound settings, and the ‘rock' choice adds a bit of weight, but the options tend to increase our minor concern with the treble.

Let's jump back into perspective: this micro system costs just £75 and offers DAB reception, CD replay and very decent performance. All that makes the Goodmans a certainty for five stars.

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