Emergency Radio

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Of late I’ve become somewhat more aware of the fact that we don’t have an Earthquake Kit in our apartment, so I’ve decided over the next few weeks to get something together as based on the notes on the UKNow website, and the official Japanese recommendations.

First up was the tech toys of course. We don’t have a small portable radio so I thought I’d go to Bic Camera and start there. First I looked at what I call the ‘ojiisan radios‘, the small credit card sized radios with one earphone which so many older salarymen have, I suppose for news and sports results. The would fit the bill, and were priced between 3,000 and 11,000yen generally going from analogue tuners to digital ones. However, I thought there must be something out there, and whilst a small size and power efficiency would be useful, their receptions weren’t great, and I just thought we could live with something bigger.

At the other end of the spectrum were larger multi-tuners, some with cassettes – a bit too large and power hungry I thought. Then, I saw something which completely fitted the bill, and then I realised that it was made by Sony!

The catchily named ICF-B01 is exactly what I wanted: not too big, AM/FM/TV tuner, and on top of that, a built in torch, soft light, and converters to charge mobile phones from the unit, and to top it off, you can run it from the built-in winder if the batteries die. I’ve already tried the winder out, and it really does work as advertised. Basically then, I’m very pleased with it – and it’s my first Sony hardware purchase since my Playstation 2.