Product Type: Lexon portable radios
Newest Review: ... very stubborn mark on it a little water isn't going to hurt the mechanism of the radio. Talking of it being splash proof, Lexon suggest th... more
Looks like a toy, works like a dream!
Lexon Rubber Tykho Radio
Member Name: chrisandmark
Lexon Rubber Tykho Radio
Advantages: Great quality sound most of the time, easy to use and maintain, splash proof
Disadvantages: No display so you can't see at a glance what station you've tuned in to
I bought Mark this funky Lexon Tykho radio as a joke at Christmas, he likes his little portable radios but is notorious for dropping them or knocking them off the window sill - he smashed six radios last year, so what better present than a rubber one? Well, to cut a long story short I loved the Tykho radio so much that I ended up keeping it for the house - and nearly six months later Mark still hasn't got a functioning radio to take to work!
The Tykho radio is available in a wide range of colours, ours is Fuchsia which is actually more of a purple than you'd probably think from the shade name - I would never have bought Mark a pink radio unless I was planning to claim it for myself, which I wasn't at the time. But that was before I saw it in the flesh, the design is so weird it's captivating. The entire radio has been covered with a silicone rubber case, it looks odd and basic and ugly - and bloody brilliant!
The design reminds me of a cross between an old style Gameboy and a piece of Lego, it's extremely modern and so quirky that everyone who sees it makes a positive comment. This isn't the sort of radio you see in *everyones* house; in fact I'm the only person I know who owns one, although I suspect Mark's mate will end up buying one soon as he keeps tenderly 'touching' ours whenever he comes round!
The radio is incredibly easy to use - the buttons on the front are simply up and down volume controls and an AM/FM selector and the aerial doubles as a radio tuner. Obviously there's no display on the radio so you have to either a) be careful how you tune or b) be the kind of person who doesn't particularly care what station you're on as long as they play some decent music - I fall in the latter category, the only channel I hate with a passion is Radio 1 but I've taught myself to avoid it while station surfing with this pot-luck radio. All buttons are easy to press, they're not exactly soft touch but you don't finger muscles to work the radio either - the buttons stick out which works much better than if they were flush to the wall of the radio and needed pressing inwards, which is often the case on rubbery items such as torches and sporty-type MP3 players.
The reception and sound quality are fantastic for the size and quirkiness of the radio. Some FM channels can be a bit awkward but moving the radio to another location in the same room (sometimes a shift of just an inch) will usually do the trick, Mark tells me that Radio 3 is particularly annoying in this respect but I can't comment on that as it's not a station I listen to - I was pretty annoyed when he told me this though as I'm not happy with him tinkering with MY (reclaimed) radio like that! I was surprised at how crisp and clear the sound is, especially considering the fact that the speaker and speaker membrane is made from the same plastic as the rest of the radio. Today was Disco Classics day on Heart and the speaker coped brilliantly with the 'ooohs' and synthesised music, listening to some rocky station my daughter likes revealed that heavy guitar sounds can be a little tinny and 'shouty' lyrics are a tiny bit distorted but this isn't an issue really as this definitely isn't the sort of music I listen to! On the other side of the coin, Talk Sport and other 'talky' style channels are crystal clear and so was Classic FM when I listened to some chill out music on there the other day.
The radio itself has a gorgeously soft feel, it's made from one piece of silicone so there are no irritating seams or joins to catch the dust. Cleaning it is a doddle, ours is sorted with a brief wipe over with a baby wipe every few days and it looks as good as new with the Fuchsia colour being vibrant and not faded at all. Sometimes a bit of muck will collect near the speaker but this is easily removed with a cotton bud, overall this is a very easy radio to maintain and as it's 'splash proof' if you get a very stubborn mark on it a little water isn't going to hurt the mechanism of the radio.
Talking of it being splash proof, Lexon suggest this is an ideal radio for in the bathroom for this reason and I completely agree. It wouldn't cope with being submerged or if it got too wet there could be issues due to the fact that the battery cover isn't waterproof (it's a standard piece of plastic which is done up with three tiny screws). Saying that, I do use mine in the bathroom sometimes as I like to listen to music while I'm in the bath - as I have a hot bath there's a lot of steam in the bathroom and this has never distorted the sound or otherwise caused any problems with the running of the radio. I've noticed that when it's in a steamy environment any dirt or grime you've missed is made very obvious as the steam causes it to run down the sides of the radio in small rivulets, quite embarrassing but at least it shows where I need to be cleaning!
During this beautiful weather I've been taking it into the garden with me to listen to while the kids are playing; the design means I don't have to stress about it being too close to the paddling pool and the rubberiness stops me worrying the the kids are going to knock it off the table while running around like mad things, or a rogue frisbee hitting it. We've only tested out the 'bouceability' once, and that was when Mark (of course) knocked it off our coffee table - this table isn't very high but the floor underneath is solid wood so a normal radio would have cracked or otherwise broken, this Tykho radio didn't bounce as I imagined it would but it hit the floor with a reassuring softness that told me it wasn't going to have been broken or damaged.
The radio works using four AA batteries and these hardly ever need replacing. Our radio gets quite a lot of use and I only had to change the original batteries last week, we use rechargeable batteries in things like this so it barely costs anything to run - unlike Mark's super duper battery operated digital radio which needs new batteries on at least a monthly basis!
This Tykho radio cost £48 when I bought it, which would be expensive if the only reason I'd bought it was for the novelty factor as I first thought. The radio is so fab though that it's been used lots more than I initially envisioned so I'm really glad I splashed out on this rather than another cheapy plastic radio.
Summary: A fantastic little radio which was bought as a novelty gift but has proved to be an excellent buy!
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