The FR-370 emergency radio from L.L. Bean is just one of the few radios that you can count on to work. And if it doesn't, they will take care of you. With an extended warranty on a product that has features such as a solar panel that is inconveniently located on the handle to a crank that can power a bright LED flashlight and mobile devices, it is hard to pass up the expediency and value when you're looking for something to help you when trouble strikes.

Charging this crank radio is as standard as they come, but with fewer results. Cranking for one minute will only give you 10 minutes of listening time, on low volume. Other crank radios give you more radio time with less cranking; but if you just need a quick weather update, it will work. Otherwise, using the AC jack to charge the device is the way to go. You can also use the solar panel that is on the handle. One problem with the solar panel is it's set back in the handle so you may have to tilt the device to get a good charge.

There isn't anything overtly special about this emergency weather radio, but the simplicity of it is what makes it useful for any emergency kit. In addition to a standard AM/FM tuner, you get NOAA weather alerts that can be set to turn the radio on automatically when an alert is broadcast. One thing we haven't seen with other radios that is included with the FR-370 is S.A.M.E. This is Specific Area Message Encoding, meaning it tunes automatically to weather forecasting in your specific area. NOAA has a website where you can find the S.A.M.E. code for your area.

There are several ports available with this emergency radio, such as a USB port, an earphone jack and an AC jack for charging. A USB port is always nice to see, since you can charge many electronic devices this way. It also includes an LED flashlight and an emergency flash to warn you during emergencies.

As far as design is concerned, the FR-370 is portable to take with you. The handle makes it easy to point the LED light, like a standard flashlight. It is splash proof, but don't drop it in a puddle or leave it out in the rain or it might break.

L.L. Bean is a company that can get in touch with you in minutes. We sent an email and they replied to us within the hour. They have a phone number as well for contacting customer service. There's also a news section on their website, and you can sign up to receive updates from the company. If your crank radio breaks, it has a lifetime warranty on it.

L.L.Bean FR-370 Summary:

The FR-370 from L.L.Bean is a simple emergency radio but it won't sacrifice the meat of the meal. It is compact and would make a great addition to any home emergency kit. It's perfect if you want to stay connected during an emergency or power outage, plus the lifetime warranty doesn't hurt.

Electronics » Home Audio » Crank Radio Review » L.L.Bean FR-370

L.L.Bean FR-370

This specific crank radio comes with a lifetime warranty, no matter what happens to it.

The solar panel is set into the handle, making it difficult to charge the device with sunlight.

The Verdict
: 7.5/10

No thrills, no frills – it's just a simple crank radio that will provide you with light and information when you need it.