Saturday, December 31, 2011

Adventures in Lo-Fi

I had been looking for a cheap AM transistor radio for listening to Giants games when I came across this Sony TR-1829. It was designed in 1967 and produced in Japan between 1968 and 1970. About the size of a beer can, the design can't be more elegant. There's a large dial on top that controls the tuner, a small display on the side shows the station, and a small dial below the display that turns it on and controls the volume. The speaker is located on the bottom. Radial fins raise the speaker above the surface on which it sits. This allows the tabletop to amplify the sound. The radial fins disperse the sound. Neat!

The radio runs on 3 AA batteries. I wasn't sure it worked when I bought it, but for $3 it didn't matter. When I opened up the battery compartment by twisting off the bottom, I found a hard coating of green battery acid on one of the contacts. I sanded off the dried acid, applied an electronic contact cleaner I had on hand, and placed in new batteries. Voila! It works like a charm. The Giants station comes in strong. Now, I just need some baseball games to listen to.


  1. A little too elegant. Where is the strap? How will you hang it from the rear view mirror in your truck cab?

  2. When rocky assumes his new life in which he drives around in a truck with a busted car radio, he'll definitely look for an AM radio with a strap on it to hang from his rear-view mirror to listen to all the great country stations on AM radio.