The ‘golden age of radio’ may be gone, but antique radios are still going strong. Whether you’re interested in a specific manufacturer (RCA, Philco, Zenith, Crosley, Emerson) or style (catalin, transistor, cathedral or console), there’s a radio out there for you.

You can identify most antique radios by model number, which can include any combination of letters and numbers. If you don't see a manufacturer's name, look inside the chassis, as it may be stamped on the tubes or other components.

The earliest radios were typically bare components (e.g. glass tubes) mounted on a board. Later came plain wooden or metal boxes, and by the late 1920s, elaborate cabinets designed to look like real furniture. Cathedral and tombstone style wooden cabinets were popular during the 1930s. And Art Deco style radios made of Bakelite, Catalin and other early resins or plastics (Plaskon, Beetle, etc) became popular during the 1930s and 1940s. Transistors were introduced in 1957, displacing tubes and enabling miniaturization.

Although you may be able to play an unrestored antique radio, note that its capacitors are likely to fail without warning (and may also pose a fire hazard), so replacing them pre-emptively is advisable.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Jim's Antique Radio Museum

Jim's Antique Radio Museum

Jim Tripp's showcase of radios from the 1920s to late 1950s, organized by style and theme (wood, console, plastic, … [read review or visit site]

The Radio Attic's Archives

The Radio Attic's Archives

This photo gallery of over 7800 vintage radios, categorized by manufacturer and model number, is a group effort wit… [read review or visit site]

AntiqueRadios.com

AntiqueRadios.com

Alan Voorhees' reference resource for vintage radio collectors includes a photo gallery, article library, PDF archi… [read review or visit site]

Radiomuseum.org

Radiomuseum.org

This vast archive and community of radio collectors features over 120,000 radio model listings and 350,000 photos a… [read review or visit site]

Phil's Old Radios

Phil's Old Radios

This extensive collection of antique radios includes beautiful photos and detailed historical descriptions. The sit… [read review or visit site]

Radiophile.com

Radiophile.com

John Pelham's collection of wood and plastic radios from the 1930's and 40's. What sets this site apart is the deta… [read review or visit site]

Radio-Guy

Radio-Guy

Steve Erenberg's extremely wacky and well-done collection of vintage mad-scientist devices and contraptions. Writte… [read review or visit site]



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Recent News: Radios

Source: Google News

Community Calendar
HeraldNet, September 15th

Puget Sound Antique Radio Association: Meets at noon Sept. 21 (third Sunday) at the Cedar Valley Grange, 20526 52nd Ave. W., Lynnwood. Dedicated to the preservation and restoration of antique radio and wireless. More info: 425-478-3643...Read more

Antique Wood and Veneer Radios Get Pricey Once Restored
woodworkingnetwork.com (blog), September 14th

click image to zoom Old-fashioned wood-case tube radios are available from Paul Sanders Vintage Radios. Sanders himself finds the radios at flea markets and other sites, and restores the finishes, the electrical components and cleans the fabric, and in ...Read more

Relics to Relish: Antiques continue to gain in popularity
Las Vegas Review-Journal, September 13th

Antique radios are shown at Victorian Casino Antiques at 4520 Arville St. (Bill Hughes/Las Vegas Review-Journal). Buy Photo. Relics to Relish: Antiques continue to gain in popularity. web1_The_Antiques_Diva.jpg. Toma Clark Haines, founder and the CEO ...Read more

An Evening in Praise of Audio at Peabody Essex Museum
India New England (subscription), September 9th

In the Atrium, experience the sounds of DJ Kongo and DJ White Animal Sound and check out an impressive collection of vintage radios courtesy of the New England Antique Radio Club. Stop by the Maker Lounge to paint with sound and to build your own ...Read more

Paul Tucker
Times Record, September 8th

He was proud of being the first president of the Fort Smith Antique Auto Club and his Model A's. Paul was active with the Fort Smith Antique Radio Club and the Mid-America Antique Auto Club. He enjoyed hunting a bargain at flea markets and swap meets...Read more

Retro radios big with collectors
Poughkeepsie Journal, September 6th

"There are radio collectors clubs all over the United States. Most people collect them for nostalgia — seniors remember listening to radios as a kid, and (they) had an important impact on their lives. Others collect because they like the history of...Read more

Nats Pitcher Drew Storen Buys Antique Radio Microphone For Vin Scully To Sign
The Post Game (blog), September 3rd

Ray Charles once begged Bob Costas to introduce him to the voice of the Dodgers. Celebrated actor Bryan Cranston was downright giddy recently when he got to spend some time with Dodgers' legendary announcer. In a story in the Hollywood Reporter, ...Read more

Make A Thing: Vintage Radio Planter
Autostraddle, September 2nd

My wife is a magnet for vintage radios. She picks them up at flea markets and tag sales — whether they work or not. Most she can fix, but there are only so many electrical outlets in the house. We decided to upcycle one of the broken ones into a one...Read more