Sony could halt production of shortwave radios in February

Several SWLing Post readers have sent me a link to this item on BCL News (originally posted by Takahito Akabayashi via WOR) stating that Sony will cease production of all shortwave radios this month:

SONY Japan declared in January that they ended the production of ICF-SW35 shortwave receiver. They also declared in February that they end the sales of another shortwave receiver ICF-7600GR at their on-line store. Probably they will declare the end of its production soon.

ICF-SW35 has been on sale since 2000, ICF-7600GR since 2001. This means SONY will completely withdraw from the shortwave receiver market.

I have not been able to locate a statement from Sony regarding this, but I’m not at all surprised if it is true. Shortwave radios represent such a small niche market for Sony, I’m surprised they’ve continued producing them up to 2018. Indeed, to my knowledge, they haven’t updated their benchmark portable (the Sony ICF-SW7600GR) since they released it in 2001. That’s an incredibly long market life!

The ‘7600GR is still one of my favorite portables even though it lacks an encoder/tuning knob and isn’t as sensitive as the Tecsun PL-680, for example. I do love its sync detector and rock-solid AGC. Additionally, it’s one of the few portables on the market that has a proper line-out audio jack for recording and a variable attenuator.

Production of the ‘7600GR has been sporadic–a number of times, Sony gave retailers the impression the product line was dead only to release small batches of new units from time to time. Likely, they’ve been clearing out the final production run.

I predict the price of the ICF-SW7600GR will climb as they become a little more scarce.

Looking back, I wrote a post in September 2016 describing where to find new or open box units online. If you’re interested in the ‘7600GR, check out that post in our archives.

If anyone finds a release from Sony regarding this news, please comment with a link!

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9 thoughts on “Sony could halt production of shortwave radios in February

  1. adi

    I also have the 7600G (for more than 20 years) and use it by the bed for the last few years for FM.
    FM Reception isn’t that good as the new D808 or even the Tivdio .
    Not much SW for me in the heart of a big city. But few tests I did showed it was a bit better or just in par with the D808 .

    Reply
  2. ShortwaveGuy

    Semi-related to this article. . .

    I own a 7600G. . .performance-wise, is there a reason to get a 7600GR? If it is only a matter of memories and looks, I wouldn’t want to waste the money. However, if there is a measurable performance bump, I might want to consider “getting in while the getting’s good”.

    Reply
    1. rtc

      Sony fixed the hand capacitance BFO issue in the G model;if you
      hold the G by the back the tone warbles slightly (no big deal IMO).
      They added more memory channels to the GR.
      And they added the dreaded step tuning mute,not too bad but
      just enough to bug you (no real or easy way to defeat it).
      But given that everything else uses the Silicon Labs IC the
      conventional design used in the G and GR might be desirable
      to some.
      There was a GR run in the early part of this century with hard to
      turn pots so be sure to do a complete checkout,even on a new one.
      (All comments from experience.)

      Reply
  3. Troy Riedel

    Re: the ICF-7600GR

    Amazon hasn’t had recent stock. B&H lists the radio as discontinued – and did so a while ago. Sony’s U.S. web site only lists BestBuy as a retailer but it’s not even on the BestBuy site. To me, this radio has [already] been discontinued – at least in the U.S.

    Reply
  4. Pingback: Sony could halt production of shortwave radios in February – dxradio.de

  5. rtc

    From the prices found on a recent ebay-amazon search,thought it
    already was out of production.
    So we can add it to the growing list of “good stuff” going away in
    our hobby.
    No more Walkmen,either.
    Truly the end of an era.

    Reply

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