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May 13, 2010


Tom Welch

The Eton E1 did not sell well in North America.

The price/performance ratio has come down dramatically in the last 5 years for world band radios so that the very few folks that still bother to listen to world band radio were not willing to fork out big bucks for a dieing medium.


The E1 (and E1XM) raised the bar for portable AM (mediumwave, shortwave) radios. The E1 has features that are not available on many (or any) other portables, for example DSB sync and passband tuning. The sync detector on the E1 is excellent, and the DSB mode allows listening to IBOC (HD Radio) AM stations without an annoying "rushing" noise.

Unfortunately, poor quality control and marginal reliability contributed to the E1's demise.


Still have my E1 though I don't use it much anymore. Its size is a bit unwieldy for my taste to be truly portable. I have found it to be a great receiver, however. I still live in fear of a display malfunction or other unit-killing problem, only because I know I will not spend the bucks to ship it and have it repaired, and then be out a very expensive receiver. It just wouldn't be worth it to me.

Interesting to me will be to see how the value holds up on these units and what price they will command on the used market as time goes by. They will either become a classic, and valuable, or just another piece of expensive junk - that is, if any are still working ten years from now.

So, classic or not? What do you think?


I have a feeling that many of them will not last long enough for the E1 to become a classic. I doubt that any E1 will be working when it's around 25 years old, like my Sony ICF-2010 is.

If the E1 had higher reliability and better build quality, I think it would become a classic, due to its potential for fine performance (when working properly).

Shawn Patrick

Probably too late now but what Eton should have done is use most of the technology from the E1 but got rid of the display, added a ferrite bar, slightly redesign the thing, and rebadged it into something else.

People who have gotten a good E1 say it is awesome on shortwave reception, which is what this radio was built really for.

The problem with AM dxing on the E1 would be the size of the radio itself. Good AM dxing does depend on being able to move the radio if it has a ferrite. As others stated, it probably works fine with an external AM antenna.

This radio probably also doomed Eton from ever producing a real high end portable again... Just not the market anymore and a lot of the radiophiles will just buy a used high end model instead on ebay.

The 750 really is a medium priced shortwave radio historically when compared to a lot of others.


I'd like to see someone produce a smaller, cheaper radio with a DSB sync mode. Maybe Eton, Degen or Tecsun can do this. USB/LSB sync can't be used on IBOC (HD Radio) stations without adding annoying noise, and many of the stations in my area run IBOC, even at night, when a sync detector would be useful to reduce or eliminate selective fading distortion. IBOC made the SSB sync detectors in my Sat 800, ICF-2010 and 7600GR obsolete for use with many of the stations that I listen to.


Could be we-worked and re-badged as the G1, or Satellit 1000 for US markets.


gary the SYNC on 7600gr does almost nothing to fading sounds. it is fairly good used to eliminate splatter however


Sad to see the E1 go, yes, it did have QC issues, I own 3 of them, one of mine has been to Drake 4 times (all under warranty), the other two never had an issue. Performance is second to none with all my units, I got rid of my R75 cause the E1 simply sounded better, sync detection is classic Drake (as good as the R8 in my opinion). Last trip to Drake was 4 years ago (knock on wood), I'll use the E1 daily till it drops dead.



I'd rate the sync detectors in the portables I've owned as follows, sorted by most reduction of selective fading distortion:

1) Eton E1 series & Grundig Satellit 800 (tie)
2) Sony ICF-2010 (somewhat worse than E1 or Sat 800)
3) Sony ICF-SW7600GR (quite a bit worse than ICF-2010)

The E1 & Sat 800 have a switchable AGC speed. I find that setting slow AGC helps quite a bit, when combined with the sync detector, to tame selective fading distortion. If the ICF-2010 had a slow AGC option, I'm sure it would work even better than it currently does.

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