The Sony FX-300 Jackal: A Holy Grail technological marvel of the late 70s

I’m a child of the 1970s and I’m glad I never knew about the Sony FX-300 “Jackal 300.” It would have been the ultimate unobtainable machine of my dreams…this, even despite the lack of shortwave.

I was browsing eBay yesterday when I saw one of these pop up in the search results.

Somehow, this radio made it past my RADAR. How? I’m guessing it’s because this model was primarily sold in Japan–?

The FX-300 sports:

  • A mini CRT television screen (to watch Voyagers!, Space 1999, G-Force, and Ultraman)
  • Precision analog tuning
  • Top-Mounted cassette player/recorder
  • AM/FM reception
  • Built-in speaker
  • Earphone/Mic external ports
  • And let’s face it: a killer design that smacks of the Apollo era 

Other than the Panny RF-2200, I’m not sure if a radio could possibly satisfy more of my design cravings.  Here are a few images I’ve unashamedly swiped from eBay:

What a Holy Grail machine, indeed! I love the tactile mechanical switches, analog dials, speaker grills, selection switches, and even (especially) the metal stand off bar at the top to protect those brilliant cassette controls.

I’m very curious if any SWLing Post readers have ever owned (or still own) a Sony FX-300. (Kei Niigata, I’ll be terribly disappointed if I learn you’ve never owned one!)

Please comment!

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8 thoughts on “The Sony FX-300 Jackal: A Holy Grail technological marvel of the late 70s

  1. Mario

    I once owned a Sony Watchman TV and enjoyed it. I can see how appealing the Sony JACKALpoo would be, even today. If you are on the road a lot it would be fun to use it for receiving whatever analog TV stations remain on the air.

  2. John K5MO

    That is beyond cool! While I couldn’t have afforded it then, it would have been a “must have” . Managing the heat of the internal CRT and associated circuitry must have been a design challenge!

    1. John K5MO

      Some of the descriptions on the ebay sales are a bit puzzling:

      “Cassette recording, playback, fast-forward, rewind (After checking with the tape for 60 minutes, there is almost no discomfort.)

      There is almost no pickled ginger.”

  3. Michael Black

    Isn’t this more “military styling” than “NASA styling”?

    Even though “military styling” didn’t really matchreal equioment, it was a trend in consumer electronics for a while, and we knew what it meant.

  4. Mark

    I suspect there’s also a strong element of teenage nostalgia that makes these 70’s gadgets look cool to me too.

    Perhaps I’m wrong, but the late 70’s and 80’s seemed to be particularly preoccupied with combining as many devices together as possible: ghetto blasters with a turntable, tape deck, and radio, or a TV, dual tape deck, and radio.

    The ghetto blaster that accompanied me to University only had a tape deck and radio, but the radio also had this thing called a shortwave band, and the rest is history….


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