Transistor Radios Around the World

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Before '54 --- North America --- Western Europe --- Japan and Pacific --- East Bloc and USSR


c.1961 Daylite TN-603

Shirt pocket radio, thermoplastic cabinet
3 7/8 x 2 3/8 x 1 1/8 inches / 99 x 60 x 29 mm
Six transistors (Hitachi), superheterodyne circuit
One standard 9-volt battery
Manufacturer unknown

One of a number of pocket radios almost certainly inspired in cabinet design by the 1959 Standard SR-D210 — another was the Harpers 6-transistor (model number unknown). These radios were strikingly beautiful in their unique usage of reverse-painted plastic — adding a 1.5 mm (1/16") lip around the edge of the reverse-painted area gave the clear plastic face the illusion of extra depth. Their cabinet dimensions also gave them an ergonomically perfect fit in one's hand.

While this Daylite TN-603 and the Harpers 6-transistor model look nearly identical in cabinet layout, and both make use of Hitachi transistors and a number of other components in common, they have different circuits.

As can be seen in the photo below, the clear plastic covered the entire face, including underneath the speaker grille, much like as was done with the c.1962 "Top Notch" shirt pocket radio. Other transistor radios that had their cabinet face covered with plastic included the 1959 US coat pocket Emerson 555 and the c.1960 "Standard SR-H204 / Jefferson-Travis JT-H204 Japanese coat pocket radio.


Daylite TN-603


Daylite TN-603


the clear plastic covers the entire face of the cabinet


Daylite TN-603 and Harpers "6-transistor" unknown model —
unlike the Daylite, the Harpers's cabinet face's clear
overlaid-plastic is confined to the visible tuning dial area

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