Goodbye to my beloved 1978 clock radio

17-Feb-2023 Like this? Dislike this? Let me know

Today after 45 YEARS of essentially continuous operation, my 1978 Panasonic clock radio, model RC-200, serial #6J0566B, started making buzzing, humming, and static noises. No amount of knob fiddling or even shaking could silence it. Even turning the big silver mechanical switch (real points and contacts, not a logic controller) to on/off/alarm/radio has no effect. Something clearly "popped" in the very analog circuitry and there is no longer any "off."

It's time to say goodbye. Here it is one last time, sitting on top of my new MacBookPro M2 Max w/12CPUs, 38GPUs, and 64GB of fast (400 GB/s) RAM. Notice how brilliant the blue-green vacuum fluorescent display remains! The dimmer knob works too but the potentiometer clearly has decades of oxidation and dust and the dimming is no longer linear and smooth.

Amazingly, several examples of the RC-200 are being offered in auction on eBay for approx. $20.

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