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]



Clubs & Associations

Discussion Forums

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Zenith Stratosphere 16-a-63 Radio, Cabinet, Tuner, Amp & Speaker - Parts/repairZenith 9s365 Console RadioPhilco 38-690 Console RadioAntique Zenith Vintage Console Tube Radio Restored And Working Vintage 1940s Fada Antique Art Deco Old Catalin Bakelite Radio Mid Century Vintage 1940s Art Deco Mid Century Bakelite Radio Swirled Catalin Colors Vintage 1960s Shure Brothers Old Antique Radio Studio Ribbon Microphone & WorksVintage Old 1920s Pre Depression Era Antique Bristol Working Radio SpeakerBendix Deco Bakelite Radio M-110 Plays Great,beautiful Compact 5 Tube C-1948!!1923 Rare Atwater Kent #3945 Model 2 Breadboard Receiver Looks Great & WorksVintage Old 1950s Sparton Eames Era Panton Kartel Jetsons Space Age Tube RadioVintage Old Antique Trinity Radio Horn Speaker Floyd Paul Old Paper Provenance Vintage 1955 Regency Tr-1 Worlds 1st Transistor Radio In Box /forest GreenVintage 1920s Beautiful Old Antique Rca Radiola 3 With Paper In The Box Radio Restored Antique Admiral Vintage Old Tube Bakelite Jet Space Radio Works PerfectVintage 1950 Airline Company Lone Ranger Old Western Cowboy Mid Century Radio1925 Gemco Art Deco Radio Loudspeaker W/gold Silk Flapper Girl * Working GreatVintage 1950's Crosley Mid Century Atomic Midnight Blue Tube Radio Mirror FinishVintage 1936 Art Deco Grunow Chrome Nouveau Grille Antique Tube Radio Zenith Model 4v31 Tombstone Style Radio, Nice, UnrestoredAntique Midwest Tombstone Tube Radio Twin 2 Dial Chrome Wood Art Deco Vtg 1930'sVintage 1940s Farnsworth Mid Century Art Deco Old Antique Working Bakelite RadioVintage 1940s Old Ingraham Electric Machine Age Art Deco Clock Depression Era Extremely Nice Vintage 1940's Philco Tube Bakelite Am Radio Restored Works GoodVintage Emerson 411 Disney Mickey Mouse Repwood Tube Radio Restored And WorkingJvc Rc-m90wVintage 20s Old Rca Victor Antique Radio Thin Celluloid Facade Nipper SpeakerRare Atomic Antique Vintage General Electric Ge 861 Old 1950’s Tube Radio JetsonExquisite! 1946 General Electric Bold Retro Bakelite Tube Radio - Original Gem!1920 Commerce Crystal Radio * Detroit, Mi * A Rare Set From Sievers CollectionVintage Early 1920s Old Marconi Era Deforest Antique Crystal Radio ReceiverVintage 50s Jet Age Old Antique Motorola Mid Century Atomic Retro Jetsons RadioRare 1930’s Zenith Tombstone Tube Radio Model 715 Serial No. 283541 Original Nr Vintage 1958 Zenith Old Antique Mid Century Transistor Radio In Rare Gift Box !Philco Model 28 Butterfly Grille Radio, For Parts Or For Restoration. Nr!Grebe Cr-9 Vintage Radio Beautiful Original 1920s AntiqueVintage 1956 Old Stromberg Carlson Shortwave Mid Century Transoceanic Radio1924 Erla 3 Tube Reflex Radio W/ Atwater Kent Variocoupler Exc Cond W/good O1a's(rare) Zenith Radio Nurse Designed By Isamu Noguchi 1930's Bakelite CaseVintage 1950 Old Arvin Hopalong Cassidy Cowboyantique Radio Retro Western FacadeOld Antique Wood Howard Vintage Tube Radio - Restored Working Art Deco Table TopUnbuilt Unassembled Heathkit Model Ek-2b Radio ReceiverWorking Vintage 1937 Zenith Tube Radio Model 6d219 Foreign Broadcast, U.s.a.Vintage 1950s Astatic Radio Art Deco Chrome " Bullet " Old Microphone & StandRadiola 28 Console RadioHeathkit Crystal Set Cr-1 - Vintage Ca. 1956 - Nice! - UntestedVintage Zenith “stars And Stripes "tube Radio ~ Model 6s322Vintage Atwater Kent Model 84 Cathedral 19" Tube Radio Usa - Parts/repairVintage Rca Victor Model 66x8 Table Top CatalinAntique Zenith Vintage Tube Radio In Tombstone Wood Cabinet Model 6-j-230 1950 *chieftain* Model Oe Bakelite Valve Tube Radio, Beautiful And Works WellSony Shortwave Radio Receiver Icf-2010Vintage Old 40s Near Mint Museum Display Airline Art Deco Antique Bakelite RadioWestinghouse Model 577-a Wood Cabinet Am/sw Tube Radio 1942 Serviced & WorkingVintage 1950s General Electric Amazing Atomic Retro Old Red Plastic Clock RadioFabulous! 1938 Pre War Zenith Art Deco Bakelite Tube Radio - Incredible Gem!Zenith 805 Cathedral Antique Radio - Working - Video Of It Playing! - Beautiful!Old Antique Wood Ge Vintage Tube Radio - Restored & Working Miniature TombstoneVintage 1920s Old " American " Carbon Spring Double Button Microphone & StandVintage 1950 Old Bulova Mid Century Antique Ornate Retro Solid Blue Clock Radio

Recent News: Radios

Source: Google News

Tirana, Breaking Free From Communist Past, Is a City Transformed
New York Times, August 28th

It was filled with HoxhasTime relics. Antique radios lined shelves next to Communist-era books. At the bar, which serves 25 flavors of Albanian liquor called raki, garden rakes hung upside-down from the ceiling with wineglasses slotted between their teeth...Read more

Pop music albums being released today include:
Youngstown Vindicator, August 27th

Collectors must be interesting characters with a vast collection of things for sale, such as old motor scooters, advertising signs, bicycles, toys, vending and pinball machines, movie posters, antique radios, diner collectibles, sports memorabilia and...Read more

Asia Specific: Indian films to enter Busan International Film Festival
The Indian Express, August 27th

The Indian film in the category is Hari Vishwanath's Radio Set, about an old Arunachalam man who finds comfort in his vintage radio set. While the 'Wide Angle' category will feature Umesh Agarwal's Jai Ho, Vivek Kajaria's Durga and Nagesh Kukunoor's ...Read more

TV show American Pickers seeks collectors
Youngstown Vindicator, August 27th

Collectors must be interesting characters with a vast collection of things for sale, such as old motor scooters, advertising signs, bicycles, toys, vending and pinball machines, movie posters, antique radios, diner collectibles, sports memorabilia and...Read more

Hastings Electronics and Radio Club
Hastings and St. Leonards Observer, August 27th

The club supported the 10th Essex Living History Group annual WW1 spectacular with a Special Event Station, GB2WWI (Whiskey Whiskey India) at Batemans, Rudyard Kipling's home, on the weekend of 1-2 August. This year's event was to commemorate ...Read more

Vintage Radio: Going Mobile
WSHU, August 26th

Nowadays we take for granted the ability to just turn on our car radio when we want news, music, or entertainment while traveling about. Such convenience was not always the case. Prior to the 1930s, the car radio would have been considered a novelty at ...Read more

Vintage radio play of Sherlock Holmes at Kearny Public Library
NJ.com, August 25th

A theatrical presentation of "Sherlock Holmes and the Hound of Baskervilles," complete with Raconteur Radio actors, will be performed on Sept. 12 at 2 p.m. at the Kearny Public Library, 318 Kearny Ave. The vintage radio play of Arthur Conan Doyle's...Read more

Radio Collectors From Across The Nation Attend Ham Fest In Huntington
WCHS-TV8, August 8th

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – Ham radio operators from around the Tri-State converged on the Tri-State Fire Academy in Huntington Saturday. Amateur radio operators from around the country came together for everything from discussions on the history of radio to ...Read more