Mike’s review of the Commando R-777 self-powered shortwave radio

The Commando R-777 Self-Powered Digital World Band Radio

The Commando R-777 Self-Powered Digital World Band Radio

Mike Kitchen, a volunteer at Ears To Our World, purchases and tests radios for us. Mike does an excellent job evaluating radios and simply keeping tabs on newly introduced self-powered products.

Mike has kindly allowed me to share the assesment he sent of the Commando R-777; a radio that, performance-wise, leaves something to be desired.

Mike writes:

This thing is pretty awful, in an ugly/cute way. FM mode works quite nicely. In AM mode, LCD screen shows as much as 8 KHz off of actual frequency. SW1 and SW2 modes failed to detect anything on the shortwave bands.  The WWV time signal on 10MHz, 15MHz and 20MHz was no joy.

Steady charging with crank handle for 2 minutes provided 20 minutes of low volume listening time.

From a depleted battery pack, one minute of cranking/charging will keep LED bulb lit for about 10 minutes of usable light, then dim light for few more minutes. [As a point of comparison, the Grundig FR200 could provide almost an hour of light from one minute of cranking.]

The carry handle makes for a good grip while cranking what is described as the “Shakeable Generator” handle.

This radio has roots from the Grundig FR-200, being same dimension and weight.  This R-777 had a sturdy feel to it. The charging handle feels very much like any other FR-200’s while one is cranking, except this R-777 is much quieter.  None of the funky whining sounds as with older versions.

I’m going to keep this R-777, as a reminder of how a good idea can be half heartedly attempted, resulting in such a poor product.

Still on the market as the Tecsun Green 88, this little self-powered radio packs a big punch.

Still on the market as the Tecsun Green 88, the Grundig FR-200 is one of the best sel-powered radios I’ve ever tested.

I believe Mike and I both miss the Grundig FR-200.

With that said, we still have the Tecsun Green-88 available on eBay; a radio almost identical to the FR200.

You can click here to search eBay for the Tecsun Green-88 or the Commando R-777.

Mike, thanks for sharing your mini review!

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3 thoughts on “Mike’s review of the Commando R-777 self-powered shortwave radio

  1. Keith Perron

    The Commando has been on the market in China for sometime now. I see it’s listed on ebay for 23USD. This radio sells in China for less than 6USD. You also can not find it in any of the major electronic chains. You find them in 3rd tire cities. I know of one shop that has them along with other receivers in Ningbo. The owner told me in 1 year he sold 2. In China it’s not sold as the Commando R777. It is sold under a variety of different names. I know Tecsun was a little miffed, because it almost looks like the Green 88.

    Reply
    1. Thomas Post author

      The FR200 has better SW coverage. The FR250’s low end is 5.8 MHz, while the FR200’s is 3.2 MHz. The FR200’s dial is only broken up into 2 SW bands (the FR250 has several), but the coverage is better on the FR200.

      Performance-wise, though, they’re nearly identical. We’ve used dozens of FR250s as well.

      Cheers,
      Thomas

      Reply

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