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May 13, 2009

Comments

Huesby

Congratulation for your new radio,vey good report but you failed to mention what all those knobs are for and how many band it receive.

Randall

Hey Angelo,

I owe you an apology, and many others out there who love their Panasonic 888. I was WRONG. I wasn't able to pull in the weaker stations because the squelch was turned up...or is it down, thereby cancelling them out as noise. But baby they are there. And the radio actually may become one of my favs. Rugged enough to take outdoors or camping and see what I catch from the air, when I'm not fishing for real fish that is. So there you go, darn it, can't believe everything you read on the net can you. I've opened it and it has a 5.5 inch ferrite. Not the longest, but works well. I have and old battery operated sony in off white that only pick up AM and has very little in the cabinet, but has a 7 inch ferrite. I haven't tested it yet. Also, I opened up my DX160 and slide out the little ferrite it had inside and slide in a 6 inch one and AM is much better now. Did you know you could do that? Talk to you soon.

Angelo

Randall: Speaking of apologies, Holy Smokes, your comment just reminded me of something important about this review of the Ward Airline radio: I don't think I used the Squelch when I was testing PSB 1 and PSB 2. So in my review, when I said I was disappointed with that aspect, it's because I forgot to turn the squelch knob to actually hear anything. My bad. I knew there had to be an explanation since this Airline model does everything else so well. If Montgomery Ward was still in business, I'd owe THEM an apology!
Huesby: Left side has AM, Marine Band, Shortwave 1, Shortwave 2 and Citizens Band.
Right side has FM, Air, Ham, PSB 1 and PSB 2. Dial light works too. My only other Ward Airline radio is older than this one----and it's AM only---and it's a signal stalker. I'll report on that one soon.

Rick

Thanks for the review. I have this model and also the similar Montgomery Ward Airline GEN 1474A, which I think is a better radio, at least when I've compared the two side-by-side. The 1474A has just one big sliderule dial, but covers the same frequency ranges as the 1494A. It's a little smaller radio, but I think more handsome. Its AM/FM/SW performance is better, and the airband is absolutely top notch (I've been obsessed with listening to aircraft on VHF and HF since the 1960's.) Even the "S" meter has more bounce on the 1474A than on the 1494. But the most amazing part of the 1474A is its audio, which can blow the windows out of the house! Not surprising when you look at the heat sink they put on the output stage, a major chunk of aluminum. All this in a very nice portable (4 D cells or AC) package.

I'd be happy to post a photo of the 1474 if someone could tell me how to do this. As for my 1494, well, it's heading for the next electronic flea market at DeAnza College in the SF Bay Area!

Jeffrey McMahon

Rick, email me your photo at herculodge@verizon.net

I used to teach part-time near DeAnza in the late 1980s. Las Positas College, I believe was the name.

Angelo

Rick: Wow, if shortwave is better on the 1474, it's on par with the best I've tested, which includes vintage Sony and Panasonic models, as well as top end Zeniths. The 1474, if it's as good as you say, becomes a very sought after "apex" performer as Jeff would say. I would like to see a photo. One of the aspects of the 1494 that I love is the dual tuning dials.

Angelo

Hey, check out this Airline 1475.
Is this anything like the 1474?
Starting bid is under a buck and it looks like a serious receiver.

Rick

Yes, the 1475 looks almost identical to the 1474 but the 1475 appears to be a cost-reduced version. The 1474 has a nice S meter where the 1475 has some kind of funky LED "illumicator" (if I'm reading the photo correctly.) And the 1474 has one PB Hi band where the 1475 has the cheezy variant of splitting the band into three scales (though it's still really one band) of Ham, PB, and Weather. Finally, the 1475 has nice mechanical band indicator windows where the 1475 doesn't appear to have this feature. I sent a photo of my 1474 to Jeff so you can see it in all its glory. It's a silver chrome radio and looks a bit classier than the mostly black 1475.

By the way, the 1474 is a very nice performer (I'm listening to the ham radio guys on 75 meter AM all up and down the West Coast with it now, just with its whip antenna), but I wouldn't say it was a top-league machine. It isn't a RF-2200 and certainly is not a Sony ICF-6800W, but hey, they're cheap, handsome, sound great and work better than many others.

Michael Yearout

My Nephew gave me a Montgomery Ward Airline GEN-1494A. I cleaned it up a little. Had to clean the channel selectors switches with contact cleaner on both side of the radio. Work great now and sounds awesome. I don't know where he got it but I really like it. Have no idea what its worth. But I agree with Angelo its a keeper. It looks exactly like the picture above.

Thanks Angelo for your review.

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