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Front View [ 32K]

  • Released May 1959
  • LW plus MW superhet
  • 7 new-fangled transistor thingies.
  • Battery only (9V)
  • Original cost £17 8s 11d

A classic case style designed by David Ogle that first saw the light of day in 1957 as a proper (valve) radio.

There are various model number suffixes such as 'B', 'C' and 'D'. These are not circuit revisions but in fact refer to the different colours that were produced. 'B' refers to brass with brown sides and 'C' refers to chrome with blue sides ; can anyone suggest what the 'D' would stand for ? This particular set has the additional 'L' suffix which indicates that it has an additional tuning button labled '208' which was intended to recieve Radio Luxembourg. I believe there is also a version which was equipped with the marine "Trawler Band" though I've not seen one.

There are a number of variants of circuitry used in these sets. The first sets used the generally reliable OC44/5 transistors with OC71's doing the audio work. The audio section was later updated to used OC78's and OC81's, and the R.F. transistors replaced with the dodgy AF117's which have developed a reputation for developing internal shorts.

Audio circuit [14K]I have to grudgingly admit it doesn't sound bad, certainly far better than any other tranny set I've heard from the period. I'm no expert on this transistor stuff but the audio stage is more complex than I'd expected, with two driver transistors providing enough gain such that the push-pull output stage can afford to utilise negative feedback (center-tapped winding on transformer T2). This helps reduce distortion, particularly cross-over distortion ofwhich this type of push-pull circuit is only too keen to generate. A tone control on an early transistor set also seems unusual to me, but then what do I know.

The same case design was used in a number of Bush models :-

  • The MB60 mains/battery valve set
  • Various TR82's
  • ETR82 valve / transistor hybrid. As is typical of a number of manufacturers, export models would have the standard L.W. band replaced by a S.W. band. In 1959 commercial transistors were not really up to the higher frequencies of S.W. and hence the front end circuitry would need to be valve based.
  • ETR92 - Rapid transistor development meant by the end of 1959 the old ETR82 design could be replaced by an all-transistor design. Or, I guess, perhaps a portable radio still having valves in it had proved unpopular ? It'd be interesting to compare the cost of these two export models.
  • Transistor development continued apace and by 1961 were cost-effective enough for use in high frequency consumer electronics, leading to the V.H.F.-equipped Bush VTR103.
SERVICE DATA There is a copy of the Trader service sheet #1459 on CD#1.
CURRENT STATE Battery protection ag [5K]Very clean, excellent chrome,and complete right down to the original little plastic bag intended to protect the set's internals should the battery leak.

There are a few signs of previous work, such as the replacement of one of the notoriously unreliable AF117's but there's no bodges and it works well.

Do you want chips with that [3K]As is the case with so many TR82's, there is a small chip missing out of a lower corner of the rear cover. I can only assume this is due to people trying to prise the rear cover off, though once the thumping great chrome you-must-be-freakin'-blind-if-you-can't-see-me retaining screw is undone the back seemed to come off quite easilly to my mind.
WHERE FOUND May 2003 N.V.C.F for £25. A very reasonable price with no sign of the usual "N.V.C.F. surcharge".
ADDITIONAL In recent years, modern manufacturers have released modern radios styled as per previous 60's designs, and this case design has re-appeared with a Bush badge and are readilly available (model TR82/97). If you directly comare the new set with the original then a number of errors will be seen, but then I guess the main buyers ofthese sets probably wouldn't notice or indeed care.

You can find a review of the modern version on the Vintage Radio website (

Top view [12K]Long WaveMedium Wave208 Selector
Extra push button (right) for '208'

Interior view [33K]Farty little transistorFarty little transistorFarty little transistor
No PCB's here. And hey, there's enough room to
replace them trannies with some valves. Hmmm ....

Page copyright
J.Evans 2003
Last updated
5th May 2003