Consumer electronics have been an integral part of our lives since the heyday of radio during the 1920s and ’30s, the widespread acceptance of television in the 1950s, and the craze for hi-fi audio systems in the 1960s. A parallel to these innovations was the miniaturization of electronic devices, also in the 1960s, when tiny transistors replaced bulky vacuum tubes.

Today, most serious audiophiles still prefer tube components, particularly when it comes to amplifiers. The sound is warmer, they claim, although definitive data to back up this preference is tough to come by. But tubes or not, vintage stereo components such as receivers, tuners, and speakers can be interpreted as a rejection of today’s digitized culture, in which entire libraries of music and video can be toted around in a device smaller than a pack of cigarettes. Stereo buffs would much rather surround themselves with walls of vintage vinyl records, a high-quality turntable to play them on, and perhaps a reel-to-reel tape deck for that rare “Betty board” of the Grateful Dead at the Academy of Music in the spring of 1972.

CB and ham radios represent another class of vintage electronics that have been replaced by current technologies. In the 1970s, CB radios were favorites of long-distance truckers, who used the Class D “citizen’s band” created in 1958 by the Federal Communications Commission to warn each other of hidden highway patrol cars up ahead. An earlier incarnation of amateur communications over public airwaves was the ham radio, which took off after World War I. Unlike CBs, which generally have a range of no more than five miles, ham operators around the world can communicate with kindred spirits beyond the range of their transmitters via networks of repeaters that pick up signals before sending them on their way.

Transistor technology itself is collected in the form of transistor radios and devices such as eight-track tape decks and cassette players, from bulky boomboxes to more elegant devices such as the Sony Walkman. More recently, as the pace of digital technological innovation has accelerated, some people have sought out the first few generations of iPods made by computer pioneer Apple.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

The Vintage Knob

The Vintage Knob

The Vintage Knob is an extensive resource on all types of audio electronics organized by manufacturer, from Aiwa to… [read review or visit site]



Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Vintage 1960s Space Age Japanese Eames Era Jetsons Atomic Old Mini TelevisionRare Sansui Au-20000 Integrated Amplifier W/ Manuals, Audiophile, One-owner!Yamaha B-2 High End Full Sized Hi-fi V-fet Power Amplifier Super Rare Japan 80'sVintage 1961 H.h. Scott Type 208 Stereo Tube Amplifier Amp W/ Ge Gz34 7591Rare Dynaco Dynakit St-70 Tube AmplifierDynaco Mk Iii 3 Power Amps Pair With Kt88 Tubes - Beautiful & Work Great Mark Vintage 1949 Philco Near Mint Jetsons Atomic Mid Century Old Retro Tube Radio !Near Mint 1922 Magnavox Ac-2 Radio Amplifer W/ Western Electric Tubes * WorkingSansui Sr-929 TurntableAudio Research Sp-6 High Definition Stereo Tube Amplifier Excellent Condition Garrard 401: Transcription Turntable: England W/ Plinth & Sme 3009 Tonearm2 Vintage Nos Genalex Gold Lion B759 12ax7 Ecc83 Gec Matched Tube Pair - England2 Vintage Nos Genalex Gold Lion Kt66 6l6 6l6gc Gec Matched Tube Pair - EnglandVintage Sansui Tu-9900 Am/fm Stereo Tuner W/ Manual, Audiophile, Excellent ShapeSweet Mcintosh C 27 Preamplifier- Recent Service- 30 Day Warranty- Liquid SoundsNear Mint 1912 Victor Ix Mahogany Victrola Disc Phonograph For 78's * GorgeousPair Of Mcintosh Mc-30 AmplifiersNice Vintage Marantz Model 6300 Turntable Record Player W/ Dust Cover, CartridgeNice Marantz Model 7 Tube Preamplifier Preamp Marantz 7 Marantz 7cZanden 9600 Tube Mono Amplfiers -kron 845 Triode -originally $52,000 -no ReserveLuxman L-100 Vintage Integrated Amplifier Very CleanVintage James B Lansing Jbl L65 Jubal Audiophile Speakers Loudspeakers MonitorsVintage Pioneer Pl-570 Turntable - A 1970's Flagship Vinyl PlayerVery Nice 1978 Yamaha Ca-2010 Reciever With Ct-1010 Tuner - Flagship Model Nr!!!Sansui Tu-9900 Am/fm Stereo Tuner Nice ConditionNakamichi Dragon Cassette Deck, Works Great!!Near Mint 1906 Columbia Bg Sovereign Cylinder Phonograph W/15" Nickel Horn Vintage Old 1920s Antique Western Electric Pre Depression Era Radio Speaker Grace F-9 Phono Cartridge With Hs-3 Genuine HeadshellZanden 3000 Preamplifier - Originally $16,500.00 - No ReserveVintage Old 1920s Pre Depression Era Antique Bristol Working Radio SpeakerLafayette Kt-645 Stereo Tube Amp Amplifier El84 7199 12ax7Vintage 1940s Fada Antique Art Deco Old Catalin Bakelite Radio Mid Century Vintage Scott Stereomaster 340-a Tube Amplifier + Fm Tuner In Cabinet Nice WorksVintage 1948 Philco "flying Wedge" Old Bakelite Radio , Modernistic Jetsons !!Near Mint 1924 Radialamp Horn Radio Speaker * Restored By Chidesters Works GreatVintage Nos Genalex Gold Lion U52 5u4g Black Plate 5u4 Amplifier Tube Sealed BagTechnics Sl-1950 Direct Drive Turntable, Box, Audio Technica At15sa CartridgeKenwood Direct Drive Turntable L07dMcintosh Mc-2125 Power Amplifier Mc2125 With Factory CartonAmazing Ampex 6973 Tube Stereo Power Amp - LegendaryVintage 1939 Emerson Art Deco Old Mid Century Ingraham Bullseye Facade Radio !!!Set 2x Parkmeko Power Transformers For Tube Amp Oil Filled Type 6000/73 Vintage Dynaco Stereo 70 Power Amplifier Hi-fi Vacuum TubeFisher 80-az Mono Tube Power Amplifier Amp Valve ~ Stunning + PristineMelos Sha Gold Tube Stereo Preamp & Headphones AmpVintage Yamaha Px-3 Direct Drive Linear Tracking Audiophile Turntable, As-isVintage Dyna Dynaco Model Pas Stereo Tube Preamp PreamplifierPioneer Receiver Model Sx1250Pilot Radio Corporation Pilotone Aa-410a Tube Amplifier Amp 6l6 Westrex Altec Tube Pre-amps Peerless K-241-d Transformers Western Electric 141aVintage 1920s Old Marconi Era Antique Very Rare Double Crystal Detector RadioHickok Tube Tester Model 539a ***nr***nr***nr***nr***Mcintosh Ma6100 Amp/preamp Combination 70/70 Watts RmsDynaco Dynakit Pas Stereo Tube Preamp Pre-amplifier Rare Audiophile PreamplifierPhase Linear 700b Power Amp - Designed By Bob CarverVintage 1950s Emerson Old Bakelite Tube Atomic Retro Radio Modernistic JetsonsVintage 1951 Antique Zenith Racetrack Facade Mid Century Antique Bakelite RadioVintage Marantz Model 2 Amplifier Serial #4561 Extremely RareScott Stereomaster 340 B Stereo Tube Amplifier 7591 33wpc, Serviced, New Caps