Ruark R7 High Fidelity Radiogram All-In-One System

England-based Ruark has a complete line of powered small to medium size all-in-one music boxes as well as powered desktop speakers. But what caught my eye was the console-size R7 which managing director Alan O'Rourke called a "Radiogram." For US citizens, a radiogram is a piece of furniture from the UK that historically combined a radio and record player. In this case though, that would be a CD player and radio.

"The inspiration came from the Radiograms my grandmother used to have," said O'Rourke. "We thought it'd be real nice to build a modern interpretation with everything in one unit." The radio part includes FM, DAB (for the English market), and internet radio tuner. There is a CD player along with WiFi built in so you can stream from NAS drives, external devices or direct from a phone. For up to 24 bit streaming, aptX HD is included. There is also a phono stage, subwoofer built in, and 160 watts of class AB amplification (100 for the sub, 30 for each channel). And a cool little remote.

The UK designed and engineered Radiogram can also be networked with Ruark's other boxes for streaming around the house, and sounded quite nice in their display.

The company is currently looking for US distribution and O'Rourke guesses the retail will be around $3,000 when the product hits our shores later this year.

tonykaz's picture

Nice find

Tony in Michigan

spacehound's picture

Not because it would be 'better' than the stuff I have already.
But because I well-remember listening to my parents 'radiogram' when I was a child. Puccini's 'Your tiny hand is frozen' was a particular favorite of my fathers.

And what's more the largest and most successful UK 'department store' chain stocks it, right alongside Naim, Arcam, Bose, and the expensive Persian rugs :-)

And though not mentioned in the report, there is a standard flat TV mount option that attaches to the purposely reinforced rear and also hides the TV cabling so you can mount a TV which appears to 'float' above this box.

tonykaz's picture

I like the Human functionality of this design.

I'm considering a complete system based on a PS Sprout ( $500 New ), an iPad to display Roon ( or some such display/streaming system ) annnnnd a nice little pair of ProAc Tabletts. ( of course I'd have a pair of expensive show-off speaker cables ).

Anyway, there it sits in the Living space in Florida, walk up to it and play any music you can think of.

Hmm : "Everyman's Hi-Fi"

Geez, I'm still retro in this Day & Age.

21st Century Tony pondering 1950s and liking it!

ps. maybe I should include a pull-out record changer with one of those flip over stylus for 78s on one side and 33 on the other.

spacehound's picture

Some fake expensive speaker cable using some black rubber hosepipe from the local hardware store and threading the wires inside .

And as expensive cables are all snake oil anyway they will sound just as good as the expensive ones :-)

jimtavegia's picture

I remember well my grandparents' Magnavox console stereo and the "swell" Delmonico stereo that my step-father bought from Western Auto, a quality audio salon no doubt where you could shop and get new tires or rotate and balance your old one. What a swell turntable it had. The sound of the train LP that came with it going left to right was great. But, that was only the beginning of the quest for high end audio that cost me much money. Just a little idea....

philipjohnwright's picture

I reviewed its predecessor, which is very similar, a couple of years ago. In the flesh it's even more desirable, passing the spouse acceptance factor test with flying colours. Its features are wide ranging, and it sounds great. Not something to replace the 'main rig', but if you can afford it then as a second system it's brilliant; I still lust after it (as did everyone who saw it).

Worth noting that Ruark do some lovely table top radios / systems lower down the range as well. Their R1 radio is on its third iteration now. It still beats most newcomers hands down on sound quality, and look good to boot. £200 in the UK, so excellent value.

ednazarko's picture

The first time I ever heard a stereo album was the day my father brought home a Philco stereo console. (He was an exec at Ford, Ford owned Philco, we got discounts.) It was a monster, over six feet wide. Had an AM/FM/SW tuner, a record changer, tube amplifier, and full range speakers at each end. It was also made from gorgeous wood - REAL wood, not veneer, something my father, who built custom furniture on the side, told everyone who came over to see it.

And boy did they come over to see it, every neighbor we knew. When he brought it home he also brought a small stack of stereo LPs, and I got really sick of listening to them over and over again. After a several years it had a spectacular death - burst into huge flames and black smoke, without warning. House reeked for days afterwards.(Two other Philco products - a huge console radio, and our first color TV, also self-immolated. Maybe that's why Philco's not around any more.)

I heard my first Grateful Dead, Jethro Tull, John Coltrane, all on consoles at our house our at friends' houses. Nostalgia or not, probably not going to be one in my house. All in ones are fantastic if all of the technology has pretty much hit its apex, but if not...

Smokejoec's picture

We were lucky with ours, my parents had no issues. The left side was a display case with gold fabric and glass shelves. It was my first foray into audio. I changed tubes, add insulation for the speaker, and also changed the cartridge. I listened to my Styx and Black Sabbath records when my parents were not home, cranked. I would use headphones when they were. I played my 3 records over and over again. Too bad no one really makes one with descent speakers, amp, tuner, turntable and bluetooth. we could forgo the display case.

ednazarko's picture

Changing tubes? Tweaking insulation? You were no question an audiophile in progress!

I thought about console stereos for years (a long time ago) thinking about your last sentence... what if someone did a console that had zero upgrade options because all the elements were top of the line? The second time I moved after that, I abandoned the idea. My component rack can get tucked almost anywhere.