View Quest Retro 1 review

More than talented enough to warrant a place at the top table Tested at £100

What Hi-Fi? Verdict

More than talented enough to warrant a place at the top table


  • +

    Neat design

  • +

    good spec

  • +

    enthusiastic, up-and-at-’em attitude


  • -

    Nasty plastics

  • -

    tiny display

  • -

    could retrieve more fine detail

Why you can trust What Hi-Fi? Our expert team reviews products in dedicated test rooms, to help you make the best choice for your budget. Find out more about how we test.

Imitation is sincere flattery, apparently. Roberts might be feeling pretty flattered by the sight of View Quest’s Retro 1, which apes Roberts’ leather-trimmed Revival styling pretty shamelessly. Fortunately, the Retro 1 is a similarly talented performer, too.

Ergonomically the Retro 1 could be better sorted – its plastics feel cheap, particularly the needlessly small controls, and the display is even more miserly than Sony’s XDR-S16.

On the plus side, though, it includes a neatly integrated iPod dock and can be powered by four ‘C’-size batteries.

It’s a secure and solidly focused listen, with good, well-disciplined low-frequency presence and relatively wide-ranging dynamic shove.

It’s briskly communicative through the midrange, too, and while it’s fractionally short of fine detail there’s undeniable charm in its energetic sound.

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What Hi-Fi?

What Hi-Fi?, founded in 1976, is the world's leading independent guide to buying and owning hi-fi and home entertainment products. Our comprehensive tests help you buy the very best for your money, with our advice sections giving you step-by-step information on how to get even more from your music and movies. Everything is tested by our dedicated team of in-house reviewers in our custom-built test rooms in London, Reading and Bath. Our coveted five-star rating and Awards are recognised all over the world as the ultimate seal of approval, so you can buy with absolute confidence.

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