The portable transistor radio out on a road trip.
The first transistor radio was developed in 1954. Taking the world by storm. Portable transistor radios were manufactured in their millions in the ’60s and ’70s and were a must have accessory for every hipster.
For the first time, people were able to listen to music on the go and this reflected the new found freedom enjoyed by the post-war baby-boomer teenagers. The golden years of the portable radio continued into the mid 1960s with radios getting ever smaller and generally, with some notable exceptions, concentrating on portability rather than sound quality.
The invention of cassette players and ghetto blasters in the ’70s, which ironically got bigger and bigger to the point where they could hardly be carried, sadly slowed down their popularity and many ended up in the bin, up in the loft or in the back of the garage collecting dust.
Appreciating the style and design of the early portable radios, we’ve started seeking out the good looking and better sounding ones, dusting them down and getting them going. Some transistor, some with valves. We’ve also found a gizmo to use them with MP3 and pick up DAB.
Do you think it might be just a matter of time before the boom box makes a comeback? I can’t see a revival of the hairstyle or flares any time soon but then again …