Having a nice radio with sensitive tuning and pleasing sound can really make the radio listening experience that much more enjoyable. Thanks to Herculodge I’ve learned that the classic RCA Super Radio III is available again at Amazon for a reasonable price of just under $50. This model is the last one in a line that goes back nearly 30 years. Originally branded GE, Super Radios are prized for their sensitive AM tuners that are bolstered by a larger-than-average ferrite core antenna inside. Super Radios also feature a large 6.5″ woofer and 2″ tweeter that put out very nice quality sound for a mono radio, particularly well tuned for listening to AM.
The Super Radio also has an “AM wide” switch which permits the radio to receive a slightly wider frequency range on stations that broadcast it. On AM frequency space is directly related to fidelity in terms of hearing more high-end. Unfortunately, with the AM band as crowded and full of interference as it is these days, it’s not as useful a feature as it was when the radio debuted in the mid-90s. Nevertheless, if you have a strong local AM station that you like to listen to, the “wide” setting may bring you clearer sound, especially during the day time.
I had a Super Radio III for a while in the late 90s and really enjoyed using it to tune in distant AM signals (known as DXing). The AM wide setting delivered very full sound on a local AM public radio station. Sadly, an untimely accidental blow to its volume knob made it difficult to repair, so I gave it to someone who was willing to give it a try.
Like most consumer electronics the Super Radio III is not perfect. Some radio enthusiasts note that its ability to pull in stations also means that it can pull in extra noise. Build quality has also been an issue at times, so it’s a good idea to buy it from a vendor with a good return policy.
My understanding is that the Super Radio III has been discontinued, so I figure that Amazon must have found a supply of them in a warehouse somewhere. If I hadn’t recently bought a few radios I would be seriously tempted to pick up a Super Radio III myself before they disappear entirely. When it looked like there was a limited supply of new ones left sellers were charging $100 and up. So who knows how long $50 ones will be available.