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We noticed that a lot of people were unsatisfied with the performance of the Jensen MR-550 radio. This is why we put it to the test to find out whether or not it has any redeeming qualities.
For this post, we tested the Jensen MR-550 for a month alongside two similar products. We’ve compiled our findings below.
Interested in checking out the reviews of other brands like Sony, Baofeng, Prunus and more.
Quick Summary of Jensen MR-550
Compact radios are quite handy in numerous indoor/outdoor conditions. The Jensen MR-550 provides this feature without compromising on any of the other aspects.
Our team members were surprised by the overall audio output and its consistency. You can listen to any FM or AM radio channel without any static.
What are the functions of the Jensen MR-550?
Besides the radio, we noticed that the Jensen MR-550 features the ability to connect your digital devices. You can use it as a mini-stereo with an AUX cord.
Our team was pleased with the absence of audio delay. Unlike most radios with AUX features, Jensen MR-550 produces audio at the most optimum quality and without any latency issues.
Is Jensen MR-550 easy to use?
The convenient use of the Jensen MR-550 also pleased our team members. It is designed to provide radio features with the help of a single rotary dial.
You can move it left or right to find the available channels. Besides that, we noticed that it can automatically shift between FM and AM.
Features and Benefits
First and foremost, we must mention the audio quality of the Jensen MR-550. Our team conducted multiple tests and found that it has no static or delay in its output.
Despite its small size, the speaker inside is quite powerful. You can easily distinguish between audio effects like bass and treble.
Does the audio distort at high volumes?
After multiple tests, we found that it doesn’t distort audio while connected to an AC power source.
Unlike most radios on the market, the Jensen MR-550 uses dual power sources. You can either power it with an AC outlet or use UM-2 batteries.
Our team conducted various tests and found that it has no difference in performance on either power source. You can use it indoors or outdoors without any worries.
How many batteries does it use?
We found that the Jensen MR-550 uses a pair of UM-2 batteries. It can easily perform for up to 6 hours on a single pair. This makes it quite useful for outdoor adventures.
When it comes to overall build quality, compact radios generally use cheap materials. We found the opposite to be true for the Jensen MR-550 radio.
Our team performed multiple tests in various conditions and found it to be quite durable. The exterior shell is made from high-grade plastics to keep the electronics safe.
Is the Jensen MR-550 waterproof?
While the Jensen MR-550 isn’t entirely waterproof, it still provides sufficient protection for moist conditions. Moreover, it also has a built-in shield to keep the dust-out.
Besides the radio connectivity, we found that you can connect your digital devices with an AUX cord. You can use a 3.5mm AUX cord to connect phones, iPods, and laptops.
Furthermore, we found no audio issues with the AUX connection. It features a dual-band speaker to keep up the audio effects.
Is the AUX connection affected by the power source?
We must also mention that the AUX connection works better with an AC connection. However, you can get the same performance with a pair of new batteries.
Factors to Consider Before you Decide to Buy Jenson MR-550
First of all, we must mention the portability aspect of the Jenson MR-500. Due to its compact design, you can virtually carry this radio anywhere with you.
It can easily fit inside your backpack. Moreover, we found it to be quite lightweight. This enables you to use it for all sorts of environments.
Next up is the price of the Jenson MR-550. Because of its limited features and design, we found it to be quite cheap compared to the rest of the available options on the market.
Furthermore, you can find it at an even cheaper price during seasonal sales. This helps you manage your budget easily.
Last but not least, we must discuss the durability of the Jenson MR-550. The internal electronics are designed to stand the test of time.
You can use this radio for a couple of years before the electronics degrade. On top of that, Jensen provides a 1-year warranty for any internal electronic malfunction.
Pros and Cons
- High-quality built material
- Available in 2 colors
- AUX connectivity
- Retractable handle
- AC/DC compatibility
- Limited connectivity for AM channels
Once we finished our tests, our team decided to check the online reviews. Most of the reviews were positive and praised the overall performance of the radio.
Many users stated that they have been using this radio for a long time. They mentioned that the radio can easily survive indoor and outdoor conditions.
Some of the users also pointed out that the radio has optimal performance with an AUX connection. They stated that this radio showed no signs of audio lag.
Some of the users also praised the aesthetics of this radio. They stated that it fits in seamlessly with their indoor settings.
Don’t forget to check out the detailed review of the Jensen CD-490 on our website.
Jenson MR-550 Alternatives (Recommendations)
#1: Best Audio Quality Radio – ByronStatics B07 Review
Our team picked the first alternative from ByronStatics. The reason behind it is the powerful speakers inside the radio.
We tested it under multiple conditions and found its audio performance to be highly consistent. You can either use it as a stereo or a radio without any difference.
Is this stereo lightweight?
Despite its powerful speaker, we found this radio to be lightweight and easy to carry. You can fit it inside your backpack or carry it around with its foldable handle.
Moreover, it uses both types of power sources. You can either connect the AC source with a wire or use 4 AA batteries.
Factors to Consider Before you Decide to Buy ByronStatics B07
Firstly, we must mention the portability aspect of ByronStatics’ radio. Due to its unique design, you can virtually carry it anywhere with you.
This enables you to use it in an indoor or outdoor setting. Furthermore, the carry handle can also be easily detached.
Next factor on our list is the price of this radio. Even though it is a powerful machine, we found it to be quite cheap compared to some other available options.
You can even get it at a cheaper price during seasonal sales for Christmas or New Year.
We must also discuss the durability of this machine. After multiple rigorous tests, our team found the materials used for the external shell are highly durable.
If handled with proper care, you can use this radio for multiple years before there is any need for change. This is due to its equally durable internal electronics.
- Vintage design
- Highly portable
- Dual power source compatibility
- 3.5mm audio jack
- Automatic FM/AM switch
- Volume gets slightly distorted when on batteries
Best Audio Quality Radio
The best audio-quality radio is the ByronStatics B07 because it features a high-quality set of speakers. You can use it as a radio or a personal stereo. Moreover, it comes with a foldable handle for you to carry easily.
#2: Best Dual-Purpose Radio – PROSCAN Elite Review
For our second alternative, we have the Elite boombox from PROSCAN. We picked it because of its multi-dimensional utility.
You can use it as a stereo with an AUX cable or a CD. On top of that, it also provides FM and AM features.
How many speakers does this boombox have?
After a series of tests, our team found that PROSCAN’s Elite features a pair of powerful speakers. They are located on each side to provide a great audio experience.
Furthermore, we noticed that it’s super easy to control how your music sounds with bass and treble adjustments. You can even listen to music at high volumes without any distortion.
Factors to Consider Before you Decide to Buy PROSCAN Elite
First of all, we must discuss the portability of this boombox. Our team found it quite difficult to carry around.
This is mainly due to the fact that it’s fairly bulky. Furthermore, it also doesn’t come with a carry handle.
Next up, we compared the price of the Elite boombox with various other similar options. Our team members found it to be moderately priced.
Lastly, we must mention the durability of its external shell and internal electronics. Our team conducted multiple tests and found the internal electronics to be high-quality.
However, the external shell fell short in quality. We noticed that the external shell vibrates a lot at high volumes.
- Durable electronics
- No distortion in the audio output
- Multiple control buttons
- AUX port available
- Lacks portability
Best Dual-Purpose Radio
The best dual-purpose radio is the PROSCAN Elite. This is because it features a powerful pair of speakers that you can use. Moreover, you can use its multiple control buttons to adjust the volume, track, and radio channels.
Let’s have a look at some essential factors you need to keep in mind at all times.
First and foremost, you need to select a radio based on its portability aspect. This will help you carry your radio on outdoor adventures without any trouble.
We suggest that you pick a radio with a compact size and a carry handle. Otherwise, it will be difficult for you to move around with a radio, especially in an outdoor setting.
The next factor you need to keep in mind is the price. While you can find numerous cheap options on the market, it is good practice to go for a moderately priced radio.
This way, you can avoid compromising on the quality of the radio. Moreover, you won’t have to spend extra money on the same features.
Lastly, we must recommend that you check the durability aspect of the radio. Most radios feature a mix of high and low-quality components.
As a rule of thumb, you should always go for a radio that has high-quality electronics. This will ensure that the performance of your radio is up to mark.
Find out the latest reviews by our experts on Jensen’s products with FAQs, Buyer’s Guide, and more.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
For our next segment, we’ll highlight some commonly asked questions. Let’s take a look.
Which power source is better for my radio?
It entirely depends on the size of your radio. For smaller radios, the difference between AC or DC power sources is almost negligible. However, as the size gets bigger, it is suitable to use AC rather than DC.
Why does my radio have static in the audio?
There are multiple reasons for the static in your radio’s output. One main reason is the reception. You can reduce it by changing the direction of the antenna. Other than that, you can also try to change the power source from DC to AC.
Does Jensen MR-550 come with an AUX cord?
Even though it has multiple built-in features, you still have to purchase an AUX cable separately. The company doesn’t include the cable because every user has a different device. Some devices might not be compatible.
Can I connect headphones with Jensen MR-550?
Yes, you can. The radio comes in with a built-in feature that can detect your headphones. However, make sure that you use a 3.5mm audio jack to connect your peripheral. Otherwise, your device won’t perform at optimal quality.
How do I make sure that my AUX cable is working?
There is a simple method to check whether your AUX cable is working properly or not. Connect your digital device with the AUX port and then play different types of media. If there is no distortion, your AUX cable is working perfectly.
What is the best time to listen to AM channels?
In most cases, it is suitable to tune in to AM when the sun is down. It is mainly because only a handful of FM channels are active during the night. This provides lesser interference between the FM and AM waves.
Does the direction of my antenna matter?
Contrary to popular belief, the orientation of your radio antenna actually matters a lot. Especially for AM channels, the direction can significantly improve the reception and thus, the quality. Furthermore, if you are in a closed room, try to point your antenna toward a window.
Can I control Jensen MR-550 with a phone?
As of now, there is no smartphone app to control your Jensen MR-550 radio. You can only control the radio with the buttons available on the radio itself. Through this, you can control the volume and the radio channels.
Does the ByronStatics radio have control buttons?
As it turns out, there are multiple control buttons present on the ByronStatics’ radio. You can use these buttons for various purposes. They are preset for volume, FM/AM tuning, on and off.
Why can’t my radio find channels in rainy weather?
In most cases, the reception is affected by heavy rain or thunderstorms. However, only long-distance radio waves are impacted by it. Radio stations close to your location are usually not affected by such conditions.
Do I get batteries with the purchase of the Jensen MR-550?
We found that the batteries aren’t included with the purchase of the Jensen MR-550. You have to separately buy them from a vendor. This is mainly because the batteries can significantly drop in their performance over time.
How long can the Jensen MR-550 run on batteries?
On average, you can listen to radio or music for 6-8 hours on a single pair of batteries. However, the batteries can drain very quickly if you are consistently listening at high volumes. It is good practice to keep an extra pair on your hands, especially if you are in an outdoor setting.
What sort of batteries can I use with the Jensen MR-550?
The Jensen MR-550 uses AA batteries. You’ll need at least a pair to power the radio. Furthermore, it doesn’t support any other size of battery.
Wrapping Things Up…
After a thorough inspection, we have concluded that the Jensen MR-550 is a high-performance portable radio. You can use it for all sorts of stereo and radio purposes.
This brings us to the finish line of today’s review. We hope this information proves to be highly useful for you.
Do let us know which portable radio is your first choice.
Our experts review radios and their accessories daily and give their opinion on our website. Do check them out.