Although boomboxes are now as rare as "C" and "D" batteries, I thought this one was worth dusting off. This striking D8018 portable radio cassette, a/k/a The Philips Roller, dates from roughly 1985.
Don't let the circular shape in the center panel fool you; the design antedates mainstream uptake of CDs, and is in fact is the cover for a cassette player.
Judging by the proportions of the translucent battery cover, it looks like it took no less than six "C" batteries (I can't even remember the last time I saw those anywhere).
I absolutely love the pull-up antenna (the red sphere). It's also weird seeing the "stereo-mono" toggle switch; while I remember those on objects from the era, I can't recall ever wanting to switch from stereo to mono.
I'm thinking there's no way these went for $300 in 1985 money, but that's what this one is going for on Etsy. I bet at least a few of you had one of these that you wish you hadn't sold for five bucks in that garage sale.
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I think the stereo-mono toggle was just for FM radio. Some stations broadcast in stereo, which sounded great but required a stronger signal. If you couldn’t get good enough reception for stereo you could always switch back to good old mono.
I used the Stereo / Mono option on a twenty year old Denon receiver the other day... As Dan above notes, in areas of poor signal the Mono FM option can often give clear audio when the Stereo option will be hissy and buzzy.
Looks like the perfect portable music solution for denizens of Neo-Tokyo.
you beat me to it!