Sony ICF-CD543RM Clock Radio

12 ratings (11 Epinions reviews)
Epinions Product Rating: Very Good
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SONY missed the boat on this one

Oct 31, 2004
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review
  • User Rating: Very Good

  • Durability:
  • Sound:

Pros:Nice, pleasing sound.

Cons:Lousy CD features. No external antenna.

The Bottom Line: This unit is only suitable for the homemaker who doesn't require a lot of extras when playing that "James Taylor's Greatest Hits" CD of hers in the kitchen.


This unit had so much potential but ultimately fell short in a number of areas. Construction appears to be of quality materials, the styling is good and it carries the SONY name. So far, so good. It handles a variety of CD formats and has a rich pleasing sound for a compact unit.

So, if you're a person who only wants to pop in a CD while you're washing dishes in the kitchen, this unit's for you! I think you'll be well satisfied.

I, however, bought it for use at work, where I play CDs 8 hours a day at my desk, and would've greatly appreciated some enhancements. The display, for example, doesn't indicate a darn thing other than the time and the fact that you've got a CD installed and what track number is playing. Not a hint as to how many tracks are on the CD, how many minutes have been played, are left to play, the CD title, nada. And there's no way to fast forward through a track. All this unit allows you to do is crudely jump from one track to another. There's no such thing as "Random Play" or anything like that. You stick in a CD and play it. That's it.

The radio's poor, especially FM, because it doesn't have an external jack for a real FM antenna. It uses the AC cord as the antenna, so unless you're OK with just receiving 3 FM stations, you're going to be disappointed.

The controls must have been designed with the housewife in mind. A housewife with batter all over her hands or some such thing, because there are no knobs. Just a few basic touchpads that control the very basics like volume, and switching between the radio and CD player.

The only real dial on the thing, is a Timer, which lets the busy homemaker quickly and easily dial-up whatever number of minutes she expects that cake to be done baking in.


Recommend this product? No


Amount Paid (US$): 99


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