CCrane CCRadio EP Pro Review

Recently picked up a new CCrane CCRadio EP Pro and have the difficult task of shaking it down.  Why?  Because I also own the CCrane CCRadio 2E which is a FANTASTIC RADIO.

So why did I get an EP Pro?  Because I can.  It’s true, I don’t need it but I’m a radio buff.  And I own enough radios that I can form an opinion FAST on whether or not I think a particular radio is viable or not.   So what do I think about the EP Pro?

First impression.  Nice looking, attractive radio.  Not too heavy.  Good placement of controls. Also it has one of my favorite features for a radio……….a Line Out.  It does not have a jack labelled Line Out, however, the manual says it can be hooked to “an optional recording device” also known as “a computer with Audacity” on it.

Okay, let’s get on with this.  Lets plug it in and get started.  First of all let me state that where I live has exactly ONE AM radio station during the day and at night I get all the East Coast Clear Channels (50,000 watt) and local stations from towns further away.  So I power up and get a loud “POP”.

I knew that was coming because every review I ever read said it was coming.  Okay, that is annoying but “pop” and then it is over.  I can live with it.  FM reception is pretty good on antenna and the sound is okay but not as rich as the CCrane 2E which has a bigger speaker.  And then…….yep, I’m getting my one AM station.   There’s not much else to observe during the day except that I really like that it has a toggle switch to turn the dial light on and off.  The backlight is very uniform and lights up the red tuner very nicely.  Very esthetic.

Cut to night time.  Soon as the sun starts setting I break out the EP Pro and get down to some more serious DX-ing.  To my surprise this is a little DX monster.  I set it up next to my CCrane 2E and to my surprise it is holding its own pretty well.  I have to give a slight nod to reception to the 2E but not by much.  And while I’m talking about antennas the EP Pro has an Internal Antenna and External Antenna switch……….the 2E does NOT.  Anyway, I should say that my comparison to the 2E was done with an external antenna, a dipole tuned to around 5 MHz.

Also right next to the Antenna switch is an AM stepping switch for 9 and 10 KHz steps which means I have the latest iteration of this radio.  The original release of this radio did not have that and supposedly popped a lot louder.

Okay now here’s what I REALLY LIKE about this radio.   My local AM station is 1450.  It’s close, and it’s strong.  I really like listening to AM 1500 which is WFED in Washington, D.C.  Hey, I’m a government employee and it is kind of relative to me.  Anyway some of my radios get the front end overload which means if I am on AM 1500 I can barely hear AM 1450 in the background.   The CCRadio EP Pro has an AM Fine Tuning knob on the side which allows me to tune to AM 1500 then turn the dial towards myself and it really makes the radio become selective and kills the overload from the local station.  IT JUST WORKS.

So roughly here are the pros and cons

PROS

  1.  AM Fine Tuning WORKS
  2. Back Light attractive and can turn it off saving battery
  3. Precise feel to tuning controls
  4. Nice sound but not as good as 2E
  5. A DX MACHINE!
  6. Red LED light lets you know you are on channel, even on AM
  7. Attractive
  8. Not as heavy as some radios also with a good handle
  9. Antenna switch for INT and EXT
  10. Can hook to a computer and record

CONS

  1. Loud pop on start up
  2. Manual tuning not LED.  Harder to tell what channel you are on
  3. This one may be a little silly.  As I am DX-ing the tuning knob is towards the top of the radio and volume control is towards the bottom.  If it were switched it would be SO comfortable to rest your arm to work the AM DX band.  (Hey, this is my blog, I can complain about whatever I want).
  4. Expensive.  CCrane radios are expensive.  But they are also good.

That’s about it for the Cons and I had to dig deep.  This is a GOOD little radio.  Yeah I still love the 2E because it does NOAA weather alerts and I love the NOAA weather channels (during periods of extreme weather) and I love that the 2E has a ham band on it.  In a SHTF scenario being able to monitor local repeaters and people using walkie talkies nearby is a GREAT feature.

The EP Pro is just an AM / FM radio but what a radio it is.   Get it if you need a small radio to drag out on the porch to drink coffee and listen to the news.  Get it if you are an AM DX-er.  It surprises.  Get it if you need a small attractive table top radio or kitchen radio that sounds good and looks attractive.

And finally………..a poorly shot video.

 

11 thoughts on “CCrane CCRadio EP Pro Review

  1. Richard Merriam

    How would you compare the CCrane EP Pro to the GE Superadio III? I own a 1993 Superadio, and it has always impressed me. There is a 2nd production run of the EP pro which is noticeably improved from the initial offering. This is according to a review on the SWL website. Thanks for your review.

    Reply
    1. John Hagensieker Post author

      I don’t have an original Super Radio but I did buy my gf a new RCA SuperRadio. I can compare it against that. I give a tiny nod to the EP Pro. It’s good on MW DX.

      Reply
  2. John

    Thinking strongly of getting this radio. Thanks for your review.
    I’m curious as to your external antenna?? Anyway you could tell me what it is?? Any AM antenna I’ve seen is usually the little plastic loop-type antenna’s. Maybe that’s what your using, but I’m curious (nosey) as to what your using…. Thanks….

    Reply
  3. Jim nolte

    Both the EP Pro and your 2E have the same size speaker 5 inch according to the CCrane website.I have the EP Pro and I love it,compares very well with my 30 year old GE Superadios II although they have a fuller sound on FM because of their 6.5 inch speaker with a tweeter and more powerful amp section.

    Reply
  4. Rob

    I bought one a couple of months ago. This is the best radio I have ever had. Fantastic FM – fantastic AM – great sound quality. If you are thinking about it and hesitating, get one! 🙂

    Reply
  5. Herb

    I have a CCradio3 and it’s good but i have zero interest in Ham or a weatherband so i’m returning it and getting the EPPro .

    The biggest reason however is because the digital CCradio’s have MAJOR reliability issues . There are just endless complaints about the radio’s lasting about a year and a half before major issues popping up with the buttons and LCD screens malfunctioning .

    3 of 4 of Our Sangean Radios Have Button Malfunctions

    Our Sangean radios are good performers for FM reception and speaker sound. They are reasonably priced. For user-friendly radios to use throughout the house, the kind that my wife and daughters enjoy using, Sangean is the best bet.

    However, for me a general use Sangean is not my first choice. Because I am an FM reception fanatic, I prefer more of a high-performance radio, the kind that has an SW port, so I can connect a wire antenna to the radio, which usually results in improved FM reception. That’s why I have a Grundig G4000A next to my bedside table. But for the rest of my family, it’s a Sangean affair.

    However, I should point out a consistent flaw, one that my wife complained about this morning: Three of four of our Sangeans have button problems.

    The master bathroom radio, the Sangean PR-D4W, is an excellent value at under $60. However, sometimes when you turn it off, it does not turn off at all. Instead, the radio switches to a nonexistent FM station, like 104.5 or 88.7, resulting in loud static. You have to press off button one or more times to actually have the radio off.

    The same problem of the PR-D4 persists in my daughter’s Sangean WR-2 radio.

    The problem is even worse in the case of the Sangean-made CCRadio-2E because not only do we have the same problem described above, the presets often don’t respond until after 3-6 presses.

    Reply
    1. chipbutty

      I’ve had exactly the same issues with my 2E. Unfortunately it seems quite common. Presets often don’t respond and when they do it often takes you to a different preset! Then sometimes when tuning around the clock set function will suddenly appear. This isn’t an issue with dirty contacts (mine are clean) but a glitch with the electronics. It’s interesting that the Sangean made CCRANE radios have these problems as my Sangean SW portables, the ATS-909 AND ATS-909X are rock solid.

      Reply
  6. Chris

    The latest EP PRO is rated 5 star on AM and FM . The only other radio’s to receive 5 stars on AM and FM are the Panasonic RF 2200 , the CC radio 2 , the CC radio 2E and the CC radio 3 that’s it .

    According to Jay Allen’s latest AM and FM shootout’s the EP PRO beats out all versions of the GE Superradio’s including the I II and III and it beats the Sangean model’s like the famed PDR 4, 5 and 15 which are supposedly the best on AM and have a 200 mm ferrite antenna .

    Jay Allen rates the EP PRO as good as it gets on AM and FM and a true modern day Superradio . If you don’t own one i would advise getting one or a couple if you can swing it .

    For years i have been bummed that I didn’t buy a bunch of GE Superradio’s when they were widely available back in the day and never thought there would be a time when another modern day affordable AM /FM powerhouse would be offered again but here they are .

    Some people say they don’t like the DSP design , I have zero problem with it because it’s a true performance monster and I love the fact that there is no station drift which is such a pain with non DSP radio’s .

    The fact that it also offers optional FM AND AM antenna connections on the back , a narrow and wide bandwidth dial ( Makes a big difference) and has a highly sensitive fine tuning dial for the twin coil ferrite antenna makes these radio’s a no brainer purchase.

    Reply
  7. Mariano

    Yo compré esta Radio EP-PRO, muy bonito el diseño y mejor recepción en AM/FM, pero presentó un problema, al escuchar cualquier estación tanto en AM como en FM, despés de 30-40 minutos, se apaga y enciende súbitamente. Lo devolví para un recambio, me gusta esta Radio y espero que ya no presente este fallo.

    Reply
    1. John Hagensieker Post author

      English Translation:

      I bought this EP-PRO Radio, very nice design and better reception in AM / FM, but it presented a problem, when listening to any station in both AM and FM, after 30-40 minutes, it turns off and on suddenly. I returned it for a replacement, I like this Radio and I hope it no longer exhibits this fault.

      Reply

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