Ruark Audio R1 MK4 – For design oriented users…

Ruark Audio’s latest addition, the Ruark Audio R1 MK4, is a compact radio in the spirit of what discerning, design-oriented customers want. As the name suggests, this is the fourth generation of the system that has been successful for 14 years.


The English company Ruark Audio has been known for years for its compact audio systems. Since 1986, the English have been developing and manufacturing audio systems with the primary aim of achieving fine quality and easy integration into a modern living environment. This is of course especially true for the smallest solution in the extensive product range, the Ruark Audio R1.

The Ruark Audio R1 MK4 is the fourth generation of this solution, which Ruark Audio introduced to the market 14 years ago and has since then been very successful with the same basic principle: a radio that is easy to operate, produces fine sound and can be used anywhere in the house due to its compact dimensions. The latest generation of the Ruark Audio R1 MK4 will feature a number of innovations that will bring it up to date and continue the success story of this solution.

Even though the new Ruark Audio R1 MK4 is, as already mentioned, a very compact system, measuring only 175 mm in height, 130 mm in width and 135 mm in depth, it will be a solution that offers the finest sound, in keeping with tradition. After all, this is one of the strengths of the English and is to be achieved here too by a linear amplifier combined with a Ruark NS+ loudspeaker driver. The Ruark Audio R1 MK4 is said to offer the best sound in its class. An essential feature for this is, in addition to the already mentioned amplifier and broadband driver optimised exclusively for this system, a so-called adaptive EQ.

Another essential feature, and this is often overlooked, is a really solid cabinet, because only with this can a truly rich sound be achieved. This is where the new Ruark Audio R1 MK4 breaks with a tradition that has been cultivated up to now. In order to achieve approximately the same price point as its predecessors, the developers had to make a compromise with the extended range of functions and all the detailed improvements made to the Ruark Audio R1 MK4.

The new Ruark Audio R1 MK4 does not use a wooden cabinet for the first time, but rather a plastic cabinet produced by injection moulding. This, however, has the advantage of giving the new Ruark Audio R1 MK4 a particularly elegant shape, available in either a light cream or espresso finish. The front, however, continues to be adorned by a handcrafted wooden grill, which takes up almost two-thirds of the front side and is bordered by an aluminium trim strip.

Above it is a high-contrast OLED display whose brightness is automatically adjusted to the surroundings. This is used to display all relevant information, in the simplest case of course the time, to use the Ruark Audio R1 MK4 as a radio alarm clock in the bedroom. Two alarm times and a sleep timer are available for this purpose.

The new Ruark Audio R1 MK4 also features the well-known, intuitive Roto Dial control on the top panel. A matching remote control is also available as an option.

The primary source of the new Ruark Audio R1 MK4 is still radio, of course, with both FM and DAB+ tuners available. In addition, a smartphone or tablet can also be used as a source via the new Ruark Audio R1 MK4’s built-in Bluetooth module. As if that wasn’t enough, USB can be used to connect storage devices and play back data in a wide range of formats, including FLAC and WAV. A line in for analogue sources is also available on the rear panel in the form of a 3.5mm stereo mini jack socket and of course a connection for headphones, which is also designed as a 3.5mm stereo mini jack socket.

By the way, not only the already mentioned remote control is available as an option, but also a battery, so that the new Ruark Audio R1 MK4 can be operated not only directly from the mains.

It should also be emphasised that the new Ruark Audio R1 MK4 offers a simple setting for hotel use, making it interesting for specialist retailers in the project business sector.

As already mentioned, the new Ruark Audio R1 MK4 is available in two versions, Light Creme and Espresso. It is expected to be available in specialist shops as early as the beginning of December 2020. The recommended retail price is given by the manufacturer as € 299,-.

Getting to the point

The Ruark Audio R1 MK4 is the fourth generation of this solution, which Ruark Audio introduced to the market 14 years ago and has since then been very successful with the same basic principle: a radio that is easy to operate, has a fine sound and can be used anywhere in the house due to its very compact dimensions. The latest generation of the Ruark Audio R1 MK4 will feature a number of innovations that will bring it up to date and continue the success story of this solution.

Manufacturer:Ruark Audio
Distribution:TAD Audiovertrieb GmbH
Price:€ 299,-

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