17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on April 5, 2012
This radio has wonderful features. I really loved all it had. However, I purchased two of them---one at a time; and sent them both back due to poor quality. They both stopped working properly after about 1 week. The first one had a defect in the display--which bothered me, but I dealt with it. But then whenever I touched to volume knob, it would go to full volume. No matter what level it was at. I sent it back and bought another. The second one came, and I used the headphone jack one time. After that, the radio would not play without it. The switch in the headphone jack was defective. Great radio if you are lucky to get one that was built well. I think I just got two lemons, but I was not willing to take another chance. I bought a CC Solar Observer instead. Not near as fancy, but it works very well.
20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
Other reviews adequately describe the KA600. I have little to add. Also, bare in mind that I'm just a customer and have very limited radio/technical knowledge.
The radio tuner for FM seems to be noticeably weaker than other radios in this price range, but still adequate. AM and NOAA Weather alert have worked well for me. Shortwave performance may depend on the quality of an external antenna. The built-in antenna doesn't give adequate Shortwave reception, or maybe I just don't know enough to manage good shortwave reception.
The little SOLAR PANEL produces sufficient power to operate the radio - even on cloudy Oregon days.
BE CAREFUL USING THE CRANK. I broke mine on the initial test. Gorilla Glue saved it.
In my opinion, this radio is worth having even if only for emergency use. I hope my opinions are helpful for shoppers.
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on December 27, 2011
I am very happy with my decision in choosing this radio.
I was looking for a radio for emergency use, and to put with emergency kit. I read reviews for months before choosing this model. At this point I've owned it about 3 months. I ordered the AC adapter and the shortwave antenna accessory at the same time.
I received it at work, charged it via the solar cell in the window, and then ran through the different bands of the radio. I had read in a few other reviews that shortwave pick-up was less than desirable but, I had no trouble picking up several stations on several bands, and this was inside a metal building where our office radio doesn't pick up many stations.
The radio has a good solid feel to it, everything worked as it should. The crank seems sturdy enough for cranking as instructed.
More features on this radio than I'll use, but I wanted an emergency radio with solar and shortwave capabilities.
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
on August 25, 2011
This is nice, lightweight, compact. Loaded with features for a great price compared to other radios in this price range.
It does take a fair amount of cranking, but, so do all hand crank things.. no bid deal at all. Better than not having it.
The only thing I don't like is that it doesn't come with an AC adapter, you have to pay a separate 10 bucks, but, its not really meant to be used without one I guess...
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on June 1, 2012
This emergency radio is very well made, sturdy and designed for easy use. It provides several methods to power it. Such a necessity for good emergency preparedness. I spent alot of time comparing different products, costs and various vendors. Using Amazon and choosing this product resulted from detailed research.
I had an immediate need to use this product so had a good test of how well it would perform. We had terrible storms and threats of tornadoes. This radio worked like a charm. I set the NOAA Alert system and it woke me as advertised before the sirens and alarms began sounding. It alerted my family in time to get to our designated safe place. I know we will depend on it often during storm season. Highly recommend it.
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on November 23, 2011
I am very happy with this radio. I bought it for an emergency. The price was great and it has all of the features of the more expensive units. For example: it can be powered by battery, solar, hand crank, AC adaptor (sold seperately for $10) and even by USB. It also has a DC input I suppose for charging as well. Now, those are options!
You can also charge MP3 players and cell phones, I assume by the USB port. I like the flashlight and reading light. It even has two alarm settings and is digital. Please note, it is not waterproof and don't leave it all day in direct sunlight. It also constantly displays temperature and humidity. It comes with an earbud. No need to really crank it as the solar power works great. The only thing I can't tell is how long the batteries will take a charge long term, say ten years from now.
There is no reason to by a more expensive radio.
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on September 2, 2012
First of all, I reviewed quite a few similar products before making the final decision.
PROS: Seems to be well made, but probably not for rugged use. Some degree of care is required.
Station reception is very good, but I do live in the suburbs of a major U.S. city. Harmonic AM hum can be eliminated by tilting out the solar panel part way as a stand, and lying horizontal. FM very clear. SW is adequate, better with a clip on Sangean antenna (ANT 60). I did not expect the capability of my Sangean ATA 818.
Multiple power options. Crank works well, not flimsy. Solar charge will power radio by maintaining an existing charge level. Optional AC adapter charges unit fairly quickly. AC adapter can overcharge if left connected for long periods of time, and can shorten battery life. Since I am an electronics geek, at some time I will swap out the 600 Mah internal battery for a larger capacity. An AC charge of 4-5 hours is adequate.
My intent was for a lightweight jobsite radio that doesn't chew up batteries, and also will serve for emergency use in off grid situations.
I have been using as such for about 10 days, without any hiccups. It runs for about 7 - 8 hours a day. I loaded it with 3 Sanyo Eneloops, which I have hardly used, and are the backup power.
The flashlight & "reading lamp" are bonuses in my view, but you never know when they may come in handy.
Backlight display is very good.
Digital tuner is superior to analog any day. Scan function is a big plus, especially on SW
I receive 5 out of the 7 NOAA weather stations in my area, all crystal clear. I have not had the need to use the auto warn feature as of yet.
VOLUME is more than adequate.
Tuner knob is very sensitive. The overall compact design puts my big hands in contact with some of the knobs & buttons inadvertently, causing changes. I'm still getting used to using the lockout button AFTER setting to a station.
Add a crossover circuit to charge the 3 main batteries as well (AC & solar only)
Add S.A.M.E. capability for weather and other emergency alerts
Use a larger capacity rechargeable battery on solar / crank / AC circuit. A 1200 Mah would run this sucker for about 10 - 12 hours, but would require more or extended re-charge. ( A lot more cranking )
I WAS NOT DISAPPOINTED IN THE LEAST, and will purchase a few more as gifts for family.
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on August 15, 2012
In short words this radio is really cool, just as promise a great radio in case of an emergency, many reviewers have provided many detail about this radio, so I'm only going to list at the end of my review the factory specification of this great radio, I'm going to focus in this radio use outside the U.S. I live in Guatemala City.
Guatemala City is surround by mountains so SW reception is not very good, you can try to use an external antenna like the "Kaito Radio antenna, T1" but as my review said (look for it) it helps but not as much as you might hope. How ever, you still going to listen some radios and as I learn and still learning SW frequencies transmit programs at specific hours one hour might be a Italian program and later a Spanish radio. I have found out that at least in Guatemala there are a lot Cuban SW programs that you can listen (not that I'm interest any way), I have listen also some programs in Italian, Japanese, Dutch, English and what appears to be Hindi, and Arab, and Spanish from Cuba, Spain, Argentine, and others countries, the sound however is not quite great but that's is as you could expect from SW and also in a highly mountain region. The next trip to the beach I will test it I, hopefully with better reception. FM, AM is great you would find great reception and sound, it really amazing given the little speaker.
As you read in the product description, it has a flash and a reading light, it is brighter but not as much any other led lamp, that probably just to save energy, but in an emergency that what you want.
It can be charge by the sun (quite slowly), by a crank (the best method without electricity), you can use batteries (alkaline, or rechargeable), and it have a internal Ni-MH battery pack just like the used in wireless phones (include with the radio and can be replaced), actually you must know that you need that battery in order to charge the radio with the sun or the crank, or by an electric adapter "Kaito AD500 AC Adapter for Kaito Voyager Series Radios" (look for my review for more details) or using a usb pc port.
This radio can charge some phones (sadly not my blackberry 9800 torch) with the use of the crank, I found that you can charge your Kindle Keyboard 3G, Free 3G + Wi-Fi, 6" E Ink Display - includes Special Offers & Sponsored Screensavers, and my Apple iPod nano 16 GB Silver (5th Generation) OLD MODEL, I'm still testing other devices. By the way if you want to charge other devices with the crank you have to move a little switch in the back and remember to change it later, no big deal.
Some reviewers have said that "The manual is a little confusing", I don't think so, if you can change your stereo, VCR, TV, DVD player time you will understand this radio without problem.
If you live in a country like Guatemala without a Fahrenheit degrees system you will be happy to know you can change it.
For the FM RDS at least in Guatemala you would not find much FM radios that have info, and the NOAA information is useless at least in Guatemala, but there are many more reasons to bought this radio for an emergency, a lot of options for listen, FM (88-108MHz), AM (MW:520-1710KHz), LW (longwave: 150-521KHz), SW (shortwave: 2300-23000 KHz), great sound, a lot of memories for each band, 2 alarms for wake up in the morning, sleep functions, 2 sources of light and 6 ways of power it. It show the temperature and the humidity.
6 Ways of Power:
1. Dynamo Cranking Power: 120 turns per minute of cranking will power the built in Ni-MH battery pack with strong current and voltage.
2. Solar Panel Power: Under the direct sunlight, the solar panel will power the radio without a problem.
3. AA Batteries: You can use 3 normal AA batteries to run the radio for maximum reception.
4. A built-in Rechargeable battery pack.
5. AC adaptor charge from the 3.5 mm jack. (Optional)
6. Charge from a computer via USB port.
1. 5 LED reading lamp for camping and emergency use.
2. White LED flashlight
1. AM: 520-1710 KHz
2. FM: 87.00- 108.00 MHz
3. SW: 2.30MHz-23.00MHz
4. NOAA Weather Band: 7 standard bands for all stations, PLL crystal control circuit for stable reception
5. Weather Alert: To be activated by weather alert signals.
8. 2 Alarm Clocks
9. Sleep Mode up to 90 minutes and infinity.
10. 100 Memories on all bands
2. USB Cord (not include)
20 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on August 25, 2012
The Kaito KA-600 is a lightweight, sturdy AM/FM, SW, NOAA
Weather emergency radio.
I bought this one because I wanted a radio that could be charged
when there is no electricity available. I live in an area that has frequent winter
power outages. As it happens, the power went out this morning at
4:30 am when I was getting up for work.
The KA-600 flashlight helped me find my way through my apartment
in the dark, while giving me the latest news as well. It was
running on the included rechargeable battery pack that I had
charged via the mini-USB port the day before. So in its first
(minor) grid-down situation, it did the job well. It also takes
3 AA batteries for yet another way to power up. The hand crank
will charge the battery pack in about 2 minutes, though I
haven't put this to extensive use yet.
I've only tried to charge it from fully drained to full using
the solar charger once. It was a cloudy day and the battery did
not get charged after sitting in front of a window all day. So
solar charging in the Pacific Northwest may be wishful thinking.
I do like that you can charge it via the built in mini-USB port.
It's not necessary to purchase the separate AC/DC adapter to
quickly get the battery pack fully juiced. I just used one of my
many cell phone AC/DC charge blocks and it worked fine. Just
remember to unplug the radio when it's charged up.
The speaker is small, but provides clear sound. There is no tone
adjustment available, so you can't boost the bass or treble.
This is not a great music fidelity radio, but that's not its
mission. It's more utilitarian. You can get information easily
when you need it and the power grid is down or you are out camping.
I easily programmed my fave AM and FM stations into the memory,
though I did need to use the manual to figure it out at first.
NOAA weather came in loud and clear too. I have not tried to
pull in any shortwave or longwave yet as this receiver will need
an extended wire antenna to do that. I'm looking forward to
checking its capabilities on that score soon.
Another thing I love is the temperature and humidity read-out.
Along with the time and date display, this radio keeps you fully
informed about the world down to the smallest detail. If you
want, you can even program a wake-up alarm to get you up in the
I'm a licensed Amateur Radio Tech (Ham) and I love radios. I
grew up with tiny AM transistor radios and mobile and base
station CB radios back in the day too.
This KA-600 is a radio nerd's dream. It's small and light enough
to throw in your go-bag or just keep on your kitchen counter and
it will do well when the power goes out.
17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on September 5, 2012
If you're looking for a emergency weather radio find another product.However its an ok alarm clock. Thankfully Amazon has a easy to use return policy, I packed it up and sent it right back. Don't waste your money on this brand. NO stations on weather radio or short wave came in even with optional antenna.
There were weather alerts outside so I turned on my "Kaito Voyager Pro KA600 Digital Weather Emergency Radio with Alert" nothing came in! One Weather station had garble you could not understand, so I pluged in my opt. antenna, no differance! Expectations for this product were not met. I've been a Amazon customer for years and will continue to be one.