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September 20, 2008

Comments

Mike W

That's quite an impressive rig, Jeff, good catch.

Looks like the same whip as the RF-2200 and some other vintage Panasonics. And that's drum tuning, if I see it correctly. I love those drum tuners.

Does that front flap come off, or does it have to stay lying down like that?

jeffrey McMahon

The flap comes off. Man I feel chagrined: First time I heard of drum tuning, but I love it.

Mike W

I'm not sure I'm even using the correct term, so don't chalk that up to ignorance on your part. I mean those tuners where the frequency is on a little round drum that rotates below a stationary line. I wish I could find a Sony ICF-6000, for instance.

jeffrey McMahon

But I see your point. The drum mechanism offers a distinctive quality, which I appreciate in the RF-3000.

I never heard of the ICF-6000. I'll have to investigate.

gerald j

youre preaching to the choir here jeff. ive been telling you, there can be no real comparison between vintage and chinese built flimsy disposable radios nowadays. when i say we've seemingly gone backwards in quality and innovation, well now you know. (is that how to spell choir? looks funny)

gerald j

by the way, that radio sold for about 300.00 early 70's dollars. those werent cheap.

Scooby214

All I can say is wow. I am impressed that you found such a radio for only $87. I had already become interested in vintage radios, and your find sure doesn't help.

Congratulations on getting such a unique radio. :)

I vaguely remember seeing a radio with the drum style tuning, but it was back when I was a kid.

I definitely like the looks of the vintage radios over the plastic ones you usually find anymore. It's as if they were trying to show how much they have put into the making of it. Kinda like a chrome covered Chevy from the '50s or early '60s. I still miss the old '64 I used to have...

Ed

Wow, that's a nice one. Is that 25 lbs with or without batteries? (How many does it use?) Some design elements, like that flap with the map and time-zone wheel, is a direct steal from the Zenith Trans-Oceanic, of course. But it looks like it has room for a substantial speaker. I'm sure it's a better speaker than the RF-2200's, which must be smaller.
But all the extra weight and size and chrome was symbolic of a time when the US was throwing its weight around, conspicuously saying, look, we are so prosperous we can use copious amounts of exotic materials and metals and resources, even on a simple radior, WHOo-YAH BABY! The Japanese would try to counter that with a "less is more" approach, ie the Sony shirt-pocket radios and the tiny TV's and other miniaturized gizmos which met with some success with younger Americans. I remember my Grandpa to his dying day vowing never to buy any little piece of Japanese junk, as he often put it.

Mike W

I had a hand-me-down Japanese toy car as a kid that must have been made not too long after WW II. If you peeked inside through the fender you could see it had been stamped from an old can of tomatoes. Now, that's poverty. American quality control expert Edwards Deming went there about the time they made that toy car and they got to work. Now we're bidding on "vintage" plastic Japanese radios from the '70's - 90's and the not-so-Red Chinese make the cheap stuff that doesn't last.

I'm thinking I should pick up a Sony ICF-SW7600GR before they stop making that in Japan, as well.

jeffrey McMahon

I have to thank Gerald for persuading me to go down Vintage Road.

Ed is right about the 3000's sensibility of American Strength. And the radio's performance matches the grand style.

I should be happy I got it for such a price and see that as consolation for losing out on today's Panasonic RF-1108.

So what kills me is that this 3000 isn't even the biggest. There's a 5000! Whoa.

jeffrey McMahon

Mike, the only radio that screams quality, in spite of its bugs, is the Boston Acoustics Horizon series. The marriage of excellent tuner and fidelity speakers makes it unusual in today's mediocre market.

Paul

If you like vintage, how about the Sony ICF-J40 which has been manufactured for the past 20 years!?

http://www.flickr.com/photos/meckel/2072295418/

Click on "ALL SIZES" to see a larger version of the photo.

Again I cannot find a place online to order this.

jeffrey McMahon

Paul, I love that radio.

Mike W

Paul,

Nice link. The next image in the photo set is a Kchibo KK-S500, which looks so much like the new Sangean PT-80 that I wonder if they are the same radio.

Mike W

Jeff,

Bit by bit, you're talking me into buying a Horizon Solo. I'm looking for a SW portable now, so maybe a Solo in 2009...

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