Gizmos by Category

Sinclair Stuff

Cameras & Optical

Clocks Watches Calcs

Computers & Games

Geiger Counters & Atomic Stuff

Miscellaneous & Oddities

Phones & Comms

Radio, Audio, Video & TV

Tape Recorders & Players

Test & Scientific Instruments


Psst...looking for cheap 

nuclear stuff?

Gizmos A - Z

Accoson Sphygmomanometer

Acoustic Coupler

Advance PP5 Stabilised PSU

Aibo ERS-111 Robotic Pet

Aiwa LX-110 Linear Turntable

Aiwa TP-32A Tape Recorder

Alcatel Minitel 1 Videotex

Aldis Folding Slide Viewer

Airlite 71 Aviation Headset

AKG K290 Surround 'Phones

Amerex Alpha One Spycorder

Amstrad NC100 Notepad

AN/PRC-6 Walkie Talkie

Astatic D-104 Desk Microphone

Apple Macintosh SE FDHD

Avia Electronic Watch

Aitron Wrist Radio

Aiwa TP-60R Tape Recorder

Amstrad CPC 464 Computer

AlphaTantel Prestel

Atari 2600 Video Game

Atari 600XL Home Computer

Audiotronic LSH 80 'Phones

AVO Multiminor

AVO Model 8 Multimeter

Bambino Challenger Radio

Bandai Solar LCD Game

Baygen Freeplay Lantern

Bellwood, Bond Spycorder

Betacom BF1 Pianotel Phone

Binatone Digivox Alarm

Binatone Long Ranger 6 CB

Binatone Mk6 Video Game

Bio Activity Translator

Biri-1 Radiation Monitor

Bowmar LED Digital Watch

Boots CRTV-50 TV,Tape, Radio

Brydex Ever Ready Lighter

BSB Squarial

BT Genie Phone

Cambridge Z88 Computer

Candlestick Telephone

Canon Ion RC-260 Camera

Cartex TX-160 Multiband Radio

Casio VL-Tone Keyboard

CD V-700 Geiger Counter

CD V-715 Survey Meter

CD V-742 Pen Dosimeter

Channel Master 6546

Chinon 722-P Super 8 Cine

Citizen Soundwich Radio Watch

Citizen ST555 Pocket TV

Clairtone Mini Hi Fi Radio

CocaCola Keychain Camera

Coke Bottle AM Radio

Commodore 64 Home PC

Commodore PET 2001-N

Computer Novelty AM/FM Radio

Concord F20 Sound Camera

Craig 212 Tape Recorder

Craig TR-408 tape recorder

Dansette Richmond Radio

Daiya TV-X Junior  Viewer

Dancing Coke Can

Diamond Rio Media Player

Dictograph Desk Phone

Dokorder PR-4K Mini Tape

Eagle T1-206 Intercom

Eagle International Loudhailer

Electrolysis Cell

Electron 52D Spycorder

Electronicraft Project Kit

Ed 'Stewpot' Stewart Radio

Ericsson Ericofon Cobra Phone

Etalon Luxor Light Meter

Euromarine Radiofix Mk 5

Exactus Mini Add Calculator

Fairylight Morse Set

FEP Microphone & Earphone

Ferguson FC08 Camcorder

Ferguson FHSC 1 Door Cam

Fi-Cord 101 Tape Recorder

Fi-Cord 202 Tape Recorder

Fidelity HF42 Record Player

Fisher-Price 826 Cassette

Fleetwood Globe AM Radio

Franklin LF-390 Guitar Radio

Gaertner Pioneer Geiger Counter

GE 3-5805 AM CB Radio

GEC Transistomatic

GEC Voltmeter

General Radiological NE 029-02

Giant Light Bulbs

Giant Watch-Shaped  Radio

Gowlland Auriscope

GPO Headset No. 1

GPO Keysender No 5

GPO RAF Microphone No. 3

GPO Telephone Series 300

GPO Telephone Type 746

GPO 12B/1 Test Meter

GPO Trimphone

GPO Ring Microphone No 2

Gramdeck Tape Recorder

Grandstand Video Console

Grundig EN3 Dictation

Grundig Memorette

H&G Crystal Radio

Hacker Radio Hunter RP38A

Hacker Radio Mini Herald

Hanimex Disc Camera

Harvard Batalion Radio

Henica H-138 Radio Lighter

Hero HP-101 Intercom

Hitachi MP-EG-1A Camcorder

Hitachi WH-638 Radio

Hitachi VM-C1 Camcorder

HMV 2210 Tape Recorder

Homey HR-408 Recorder

Ingersoll XK505 TV, Radio

International HP-1000 Radio

Internet Radio S-11

James Bond TV Watch

Jasa AM Wristwatch Radio

Juliette LT-44 Tape Recorder

Jupiter FC60 Radio

JVC GR-C1 Camcorder

JVC GX-N7E Video Camera



King Folding Binoculars

Kodak Brownie Starflash

Kodak 56X Instamatic

Kodak 100 Instamatic

Kodak EK2 'The Handle'

Kodak EK160 Instant Camera

Kodak Pony 135

Kvarts DRSB-01 Dosimeter

Kvarts DRSB-88 Dosimeter

Kvarts DRSB-90 Geiger Count

Kyoto S600 8-Track Player

Magnetic Core Memory 4kb

Marlboro Giant  AM Radio

Mattel Intellivision

Maxcom Cordless Phone

McArthur Microscope OU

Memo Call Tape Recorder

Micronta 3001 Metal Detector

Microphax Case II Fiche

Mini Com Walkie Talkies

Minolta 10P 16mm Camera

Minolta-16 II Sub Min Camera

Minolta XG-SE 35mm SLR

Minolta Weathermatic-A

Minox B Spy Camera

Mohawk Chief Tape Recorder

Motorola 5000X Bag Phone

Motorola 8500X ‘Brick’

Motorola Micro TAC Classic

MPMan MP-F20 MP3 Player

Music Man Talking Radio

Mystery Microphone

Nagra SN Tape Recorder

National Hyper BII Flashgun

National RQ-115 Recorder

NatWest 24 Hour Cashcard


Widget Of The Week

Philips CD 150 Compact Disc Player, 1985

The launch of Compact Disc in 1983 by Philips and Sony, changed everything and almost certainly marked the beginning of the so-called ‘Digital Revolution’. Up until that point virtually all household audio and video products, gadgets and appliances relied on venerable analogue technology.


Of course digital electronics had been around for some time but it had little impact on the consumer market, until the arrival of CD. It didn’t happen overnight, though, and CD got off to a rather slow start. First generation players were expensive, well above what the average Hi-Fi equipment buyer would be prepared to pay, and for the first year or so the small number of discs available lacked popular appeal, showing a strong bias towards worthy classical pieces..


Performance and the supposed indestructible nature of discs also came in for some stick and a lot of audiophiles and Hi-Fi stalwarts dismissed it as a passing fad. It did have one or two eye-catching features, though. Small size, convenience and the facility to play album tracks in any desired order was a revelation, and it avoided the main weaknesses of vinyl, namely vulnerability to dust and scratches. Even so, two years after launch, price was still a major obstacle with most players selling for between £500 and £1000. Then along came Philips with the CD 150, costing under £240, which was still quite pricey for an audio component, but it gave the new format a welcome kick-start. 


Those early CD players were large and heavy items with complex die-cast metal chassis and multiple circuit boards, densely packed with discrete components. The CD 150 did away with all that; almost all of the metalwork was replaced by plastic, which did wonders for the weight and the many individual electronic circuits, needed to control deck and laser servos, and the spindle motor, were bundled together into a small number of purpose-designed chips. The weight and component count fell dramatically, as did the price, and other manufacturers who had been quietly waiting on the sidelines, quickly jumped on the bandwagon, further driving down prices.


The CD 150 had one other thing going for it, it worked really well and a fair few contemporary reviews compared it quite favourably with players costing two and three times as much. Philips clearly hadn’t skimped on the important technical bits and pieces, but there’s no getting away from it, it is quite basic, and not much to look at. It had actually been designed as part of a system and an infrared remote control was sold as optional extra (it has a socket on the back for a wired remote control link to other Philips audio products). All of the standard functions were there though, with a programmable 20-track memory, 3-speed forward and reverse search (audio on the first two speeds), a simple track, time and index LED display and a nifty Pause mode with a countdown display, apparently for the convenience of DJs. The deck mechanism was advanced for the time. It’s possible there had been collaboration with the designers of portable decks that were soon to appear. It worked at any angle, even on is side, and was surprisingly stable with a good deal of immunity to knocks and vibration.


This particular machine was an early pre-production review sample supplied to me by one of Philips's PR agencies. This would have been a few weeks before the UK launch and as I recall Philips were handing them out at a rate of knots to fellow journalists working for the then numerous audio and consumer electronics magazines. This was quite a bold step for a new product so they must have been pretty confident that it would get favourable reviews. It came with a number of test CDs and in addition to classical standards there was a small assortment of what have now become classic rock and pop albums, from the likes of Dire Straits and Marillion. Several of those first edition titles have gone on to become collectibles in their own right and one or two of them may even be worth more than the player…


Philips never asked for it back and it remained in fairly regular use for a couple of years, providing a useful benchmark for the other CD system and entry-level players that I was reviewing at the time. I don’t recall exactly when it was retired but it would have been when the features and performance of other manufacturer’s players had become noticeably better than the CD 150, which says a lot for the resiliance of  the original design. I suspect that I couldn’t bear to part with it so it went into storage in my garage, under a large pile of other stuff that might come in handy one day... I stumbled across it recently in an abortive attempt to tidy up and was amazed to find that it still powered up and played discs, at least as well as it ever did. Back in the 80s Philips still had a well-deserved reputation for design and build quality and even managed to give top name Japanese manufacturers a run for their money.


What Happened To It?

Philips obviously didn’t waste much time on the cosmetics -- compared with previous models -- but at the time it was exactly what the market had been waiting for and it helped propel CD from an expensive novelty into the Hi-Fi mainstream. The trouble was, although Philips blazed the trail for affordable CD players it couldn’t keep up with the Japanese, who savagely undercut them, sometimes at the expense of sound quality. Sadly that often didn’t matter; even a low-end CD player could sound better than a poorly set up or maintained record deck and Hi-Fi system playing scratchy records, and CD had the convenience factor. However, in the end, for the mass market what really counted was price, but Philips was never a serious player in the bargain basement, budget sectort. Numerous sucessors to the CD 150 followed but in audio, at least, Philips never strayed far from its safe and familiar mid-market, euro-brand image. By the early 90s Philips had drifted even further into mediocrity, lacking the innovation and boldness that we saw throughout the 60s and 70s with genuinely ground-breaking products like its all-transistor colour TVs, Compact and Micro audio cassettes, Laserdisc, the first home VCR,  the Video 2000 recording format, and of course, CD.


Nowadays CD 150’s attract little attention; the real collectibles are first generation models, like the Sony CDP-101 and the classic Philips CD100. They sometimes sell for truly daft prices on ebay, though if you hang around long enough you might be able to find a fixer-upper for less than £100. Working CD 150s generally go for between £20 to £50, and that’s helped by the fact that there was very successful mod, involving replacing a chunk of the output circuitry that significantly boosts performance. It’s never going to have the status of the earliest models but it’s still a bit of a milestone, and worth a punt if you come across a cheap, presentable runner.      


First seen                1985

Original Price         £240

Value Today           £25 (0216)

Features                 Track, time & Index display, pause countdown, 3-speed forward & reverse search (audio on first two), 20-track program memory, cable remote option

Power req.                    240 VAC

Dimensions:                  245 x 295 x 85mm

Weight:                         3.1kg

Made (assembled) in:    Belgium

Hen's Teeth (10 rarest):  6




Dusty Navigation

About Dustygizmos

Crystal Radios

Transistor Radios

Mini Tape Recorders


Sinclair TVs


Tape Recorder Gallery

A - C    D- M     N - Z








More Gizmos A - Z


Nife NC10 Miner's Lamp

Nimslo 3D Camera

NOA FM Wireless Intercom

Nokia 9210 Communicator

Novelty AM Radio Piano

Olympia DG 15 S Recorder

Optikon Binocular Magnifier

Oric Atmos Home PC

Panda & Bear Radios

Panasonic AG-6124 CCTV VCR

Panasonic EB-2601 Cellphone

Panasonic RS-600US

Parrot RSR-423 Recorder

Pentax Asahi Spotmatic SLR

Philatector Watermark Detector

PH Ltd Spinthariscope

Philips Electronic Kit

Philips EL3302 Cassette

Philips EL3586 Reel to Reel

Philips PM85 Recorder

Philips P3G8T/00 Radio

Pifco 888.998 Lantern Torch

Pion TC-601 Tape Recorder

PL802/T Semconductor Valve

Plessey PDRM-82 Dosimeter

Polaroid Automatic 104

Polaroid Land Camera 330

Polaroid Supercolor 635CL

Polaroid Swinger II

Polavision Instant Movie

POM Park-O-Meter

Prinz 110 Auto Camera

Prinz Dual 8 Cine Editor

Prinz TCR20 B&W TV

Psion Organiser II XP

Pye 114BQ Portable Radio

Rabbit Telepoint Phone

Quali-Craft Slimline Intercom

RAC Emergency Telephone

Racal Acoustics AFV Headset

Radofin Triton Calculator

Raytheon Raystar 198 GPS

Realistic TRC 209 CB

ReVox A77 Tape Recorder

Roberts R200 MW/LW Radio

Rolling Ball Clock

Rolls Royce Car Radio

Ronco Record Vacuum

Sanyo G2001 Music Centre

Sanyo M35 Micro Pack

Satellite AM/FM Radio

Satvrn TDM-1200 Sat Box

Science Fair 65 Project Kit

Seafix Radio Direction Finder

Seiko EF302 Voicememo

Seiko James Bond TV Watch

Sekiden SAP50 Gun

Shackman Passport Camera

Sharp CT-660 Talking Clock

Shira WT106 Walkie Talkies

Shira WT-605 Walkie Talkies

Shogun Music Muff

Simpson 389 Ohmmeter

Sinclair Calculator

Sinclair Black Watch

Sinclair FM Radio Watch

Sinclair FTV1 Pocket TV

Sinclair Micro-6 Radio

Sinclair Micromatic Radio

Sinclair MTV1A Micovision TV

Sinclair MTV1B Microvision TV

Sinclair PDM-35 Multimeter

Sinclair System 2000 Amp

Sinclair Super IC-12

Sinclair X1 Burtton Radio

Sinclair Z-1 Micro AM Radio

Sinclair Z-30 Amplifier

Sinclair ZX81

Speak & Spell

Sony Betamovie BMC-200

Sony CFS-S30 'Soundy'

Sony DD-8 Data Discman

Sony CM-H333 Phone

Sony CM-R111 Phone

Sony FD-9DB Pocket TV

Sony MDR3 Headphones

Sony MVC-FD71 Digicam

Sony TC-50 Recorder

Sony TC-55 Recorder

Sony Walkman TPS-L2

Sony Rec Walkman WM-R2

Speedex Hit Spy Camera

Standard Slide Rule

Starlite Pocket Mate Tape

Staticmaster Static Brush

Steepletone MBR7 Radio

Stuzzi 304B Memocorder


Talkboy Tape Recorder

Taylor Barograph

Tasco SE 600 Microscope

Technicolor Portable VCR

Telephone 280 1960

Telex MRB 600 Headset

Thunderbirds AM Can Radio

Tinico Tape Recorder

Tokai TR-45 Tape Recorder

Tomy Electronic Soccer

Toshiba HX-10 MSX Computer

Triumph CTV-8000 5-inch TV

TTC C1001 Multimeter

Uher 400 RM Report Monitor

Vanity Fair Electron Blaster

Vextrex Video Game

VideoPlus+ VP-181 Remote

Vidor Battery Radio

View-Master Stereo Viewer

Vivalith 301 Heart Pacemaker

VTC-200 Video Tape Cleaner

Waco Criuser AM Radio

Waco TV Slide Lighter

Wallac Oy RD-5 Geiger Counter

W E Co Folding Phone

White Display Ammeter

Wittner Taktell Metronome


Yamaha Portasound PC-10

Yashica AF Motor 35mm

Yupiteru MVT-8000 Scanner


All information on this  web  site  is provided as is without warranty of any kind. Neither nor its employees nor contributors are responsible for any loss, injury, or damage, direct or consequential, resulting from your choosing to use any of the information contained  herein.

Copyright (c) 2006 - 2016



counter statistics