Thorn Model 627U

 This is an eye-catching design heralding the advent of the sixties. This example was made soon after June 1960 which is the date stamped on its HT smoothing capacitor and sold for £21:9:3d plus purchase tax. VHF coverage is 88-104MHz. Using six B9A valves and a printed circuit it falls into the category where transistor technology wasn't up to the radio industries standards but its future interconnection arrangements were. Around this date I remember the controversy between valves and transistors. Transistors would never catch on; how could little bits of germanium with three legs powered by a few volts ever hope to compete with the like of double-diode-triode-hexodes and 6L6s. I remember when I was doing my thesis at Liverpool University, building a speech scrambler come stereo audio multiplexer, and never even considering transistors in its construction. I used lots of 12AX7s and 6C4s and cut holes for the valveholders in a chassis fashioned from a big piece of aluminium bent to shape in an enormous bending machine somewhere in the basement of the Mechanical Engineering Department. It must have been as late as 1969-70 that valves disappeared from domestic radios and I recall my new Bush colour TV bought in 1970 was one of the first all-transistor TV sets. I see in the latest Practical TV a firm is actually buying up ECC83s. Gone are the days when these were ten a penny and a dozen red spot transistors cost a weeks wages. Yet in the late 50s typical computers used transistors by the hundreds of thousands. In those days few knew what the inside of a computer looked like except those engaged in the defence of the realm. It took ten years before the technology finished elbowing its way into the factories of the radio industry and finally ousted its glass rival.

Tunes up to 101MHz so it'll just get Classic FM

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