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Sony Corporation, Tokyo

ICF - 7600A

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überarbeitet am 30.10.2010

As a successor to the first miniature multiband shortwave radio ICF-7600, Sony presented the ICF-7600A in the year 1983, this very similar looking radio got a double conversion design.

ICF - 7600A Japan Variant, FM range 76 - 108 MHz
ICF - 7600AW International Variant, FM range 88 - 108 MHz meeting the frequency restrictions of German FTZ.
Double conversion

Analog dial, around 20 kHz

AM, FM (VHF)

Selectivity -6 dB/ -60 dB

Sensitivity

The Sony ICF-7600A is the successor of the ICF-7600 covering seven shortwave broadcast bands and not only five of them. The set is 120 x 190 x 32 mm wide and has a weight of 500 g, it's dimensions are nearly the same as the ones of the earlier ICF-7600, but Sony managed to pack a complete double conversion design in the cabinet. In contrast to the older model, it's switch off button is marked green.

The left part of the receiver front is taken by the quite flat speaker. Most of the right half is taken by the dial window with it's vertical frequency dials of the spread 49, 41, 31, 25, 19, 16 and 13 m shortwave bands, the dials for mediumwaves and the FM broadcast band are printed on the cabinet. In the ICF-7600A, the FM broadcast band extends from 76 to 108 MHz, in contrast to the variant ICF-7600AW sold in Europe, which only covers the 88 - 108 MHz range used in Europe and omits the frequencies above 76 MHz used for FM broadcasts in Japan.
Below the dials, You find the sliding switch to select one of the shortwave bands and three pushbuttons, which act as bandswitches for SW, MW and FM, a tiny little pushbutton with a green mark is used to turn off the receiver. This arrangement is found in many later Sony analog shortwave radios as well as in a large number of travel radios from other manufacturers, even the cheap littel multiband radio "Made in China" from the drugstore has a similar operation scheme as the Sony ICF-7600A.
Between the speaker and the frequency dials, You find the sliding controls for volume and the tone switch.
The tuning knob at the receiver's right small face is rotated without backlash, within the broadcast bands, the frequency accuracy of the ICF-7600A is around 25 kHz.

At the left small face of the radio, You find a 6V DC jack to connect the external power supply and jacks for earphones and a cassette recorder, the battery compartment is found at the back, the ICF-7600A needs four UM-3 batteries.

Operating the ICF-7600A is absolutely easy: press the SW button to switch the radio on and to select the shortwave range, then use the sliding switch to select the desired shortwave band, position number 1 stands for the 49 m band, the selected band in indicated by a tiny mechanically moved indicator just below the frequency dial. On the bandspread dial, 8 mm correspond to 50 kHz, so You can "guess" a frequency within 10 kHz, in the 19 m band, it's 8 mm for 100 kHz, so the dial resolution is about 20 kHz.
The double conversion design is far better as far as rejection of unwanted signals and mirrors is concerned, the dynamic range is improved but I would not recommend connecting an external antenna to the little receiver - it works best from the telescopic antenna.
I consider the ICF-7600A or it's variant ICF-7600AW sold in Europe as collector's items - but it is still a reasonable shortwave travel radio. As on the used market, You might find double conversion receivers with PLL synthesis are for a little amount of money, I would rather take one of these, e.g. a Sony ICF-7600D with me on trips abroad.

 

© Martin Bösch 20.5.2005 / translated 9.11.2010