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Reviews Categories | Receivers: General Coverage | Sony World Band Receiver ICF-SW7600GR Help


Reviews Summary for Sony World Band Receiver ICF-SW7600GR
Sony World Band Receiver ICF-SW7600GR Reviews: 79 Average rating: 4.3/5 MSRP: $$180
Description: Portable shortwave receiver.
Product is in production.
More info: http://
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SHORTWAVELISTENER101 Rating: 4/5 Mar 5, 2015 10:24 Send this review to a friend
Simple Radio With a great synchronous detector  Time owned: more than 12 months
Overview: Having owned this radio for over seven years, the Sony ICF SW-7600gr has proven itself to be a solid overall performer on all the bands with its SSB reception that outperforms all of my radios (except for the Tecsun PL880). Here is my review:

Pros: Simplistic design, 100 easy to use presets with memory scan (see cons), contains the most functional synchronous selectable sideband of any modern portable, provides excellent single sideband reception with a LSB/USB switch located on the side panel (see cons) , Japanese FM, sleep timer that can be turned off, tone switch (see cons), adjustable attenuator.

Cons: Images appear 900khz above any strong signal (even though it supposedly has "dual conversion"), mediocre audio through internal speaker, single sideband fine tune wheel difficult to use with precision, keys wear out over time, no automatic tuning storage, pricier than some more sensitive Tecsun radios, only one bandwidth (almost completely remedied by synchronous detector).

Verdict: is a simplistic receiver with an excellent synchronous detector that performs well in most aspects. However, if you are a regular FM listener or an AM shortwave DXer you might prefer Tecsun's more sensitive 660/680/880 receivers.

Note 1: Shortwave sensitivity seems to be better above 15 megahertz than on the lower bands.

Note 2: The built in telescopic antenna is very fragile and great precaution should be taken in extending it.

Note 3: Although I have never had the chance to test this (I live in North America), longwave stations supposedly come in very well on this radio.

Note 4: The sensitivity on this receiver is somewhere between that of the Kaito KA1103 and the Sangean ATS 909x
 
F4GFT Rating: 5/5 Mar 18, 2014 13:46 Send this review to a friend
A true classic, the last of the great Sony SW radios  Time owned: more than 12 months
I cannot review the ICF-7600 without some nostalgia. I vividly recall the day when the original model, the 7600D, came out in 1983. I bought the export model in 1985, because I wanted the citizen band included, and being a student without a budget, it cost me dearly. I was very fond of my 7600D, and remember nights listening to BC DX and amateur radio. A truly impressive radio, which only Sony could produce.

Time went on, and almost 10 years later the radio suffered severe damage at a car accident. My then-girl friend (who had the accident) decided to keep it for FM reception, and live went on. I replaced the 7600D with an ICF 100, which was just as impressive (but for other reasons), but which got stolen shortly after. Considering that I had bad luck with SW receivers, I gave up.

But as it is with old love affaires, I never really could forget the 7600D. When my wife complained about the horrible FM reception in the kitchen or the bathroom (we live in a big european city with lots of FM stations on very close frequencies), I thought that the 7600 would certainly perform better than the average radio. I got one from ebay, and must say that it is an excellent FM radio, with very good selectivity, even in the presence of a large number of strong stations on adjacent channels. I had to test the SW capabilities, of course. My amateur radio transceiver, although only average, does perform better on SSB, and I must admit that the 7600 is too wide band to copy CW on a busy day, but that's not the point. If a radio conceived more than 30 years ago is still on the market, there is a reason - I consider the 7600D, DS, and the later G and GR models a timeless classic, and a reminder of the days when Sony was simply the reference. Thank you Sony!
 
N3UFJ Rating: 5/5 Jan 16, 2014 20:20 Send this review to a friend
Solid Radio  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have had this Gem for a bit over a year now. I find that overall this is a great radio for the $130 price point +/- $20.
I really do not think there is a rig made that does everything at an exceptional level.
I find it to be a very solid build, it will pull in signals quite well, with a little "fiddling" with the buttons you can "fine tune" what it is you want to hear.
I also own the Grundig Sattelit 750, Sangean ATS-909X, and an Eton E-10, each one has its own little quirks. It is very easy to "pick nits" at each different radio with this one better here than that one and so on. So I leave that to the "Nit pickers".
Overall I am very pleased with this radio, it seems to do everything quite well and is a solid build. I would buy another one should this one break or get stolen.

Tom French N3UFJ
 
KB1LHE Rating: 4/5 Dec 16, 2013 10:47 Send this review to a friend
A great performer in its price range!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
A great radio for its price range.


After reading the many reviews from several sites such as this one, I decided to purchase the 7600GR primarily for its long battery life (45 hrs+) on standard alkaline cells, its good sensitivity on all bands and pretty good sounding audio at low volume. There are many other pluses I could get into but will only mention the one major problem with this radio and no, its not the absence of a tuning knob.

The telescoping whip mount has had some serious seizing problems after several months or years of use. Its the part of the mount that allows the 360 degree swivel of the whip that starts seizing up after time. I wonder if this stiffness is done to support the fully extended whip when the radio is used with its table stand extended. In any case, I plan to solve the seizing problem with some forced lubrication into the mounting base with heated synthetic oil. This problem is an important one since once the whip base starts to seize, forcing it can snap the mounting screw part of the back cover.

Otherwise, I feel this radio is well worth the money and with all the vast positive reviews at several sites on the web, I feel that all the reviews have told the truth for the most part and this is why I decided on the 7600GR.

By the way, the only other main complaint on reviews of this radio is the "warbling" audio when the sync detection circuit is used on AM. The fix is easy because the cause is just a dirty SSB fine tune pot which can be fixed with a good quality contact cleaner with a lubricating formula. Time will tell about this radio with more use but I am confident that it will please me for many years to come. I gave it a "4" rating because of the two problems cited above...perhaps a "4 1/2" would better describe my rating.

Other radios I have thought of purchasing was the Grundig G3 and the Tecsun 660, which both have had either mechanical or electronic problems reported in many reviews.
 
NASSAU Rating: 4/5 Jul 28, 2013 08:08 Send this review to a friend
Good portable, though not perfect  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I bought a Sony 7600GR for SWLing as I travel a lot with my work, and am reluctant to take my Elecraft KX3 to some of those countries given the it is a transmitter, which some countries may consider subversive (Saudi Arabia, Lebanon,...).

It replaces my Roberts 876 (a.k.a Sangean 606A). From this perspective, the Sony offers all of the Sangean's (limited) abilities and adds: SSB, AM Sync Detection, variable RF attenuator.

I am not concerned about memory presets or timers, etc. Just radio reception and perhaps station scanning. I typically scan the bands to listen and dig out a distance broadcast station.

Overall, the Sony is a solid performer as a portable receiver. A bit dated (originating in the 80s), with some tiring ergonomics (all buttons and side switches); it is a sensitive and useful radio to carry around the globe.

Not looking to overly analyse the radio in comparisons and reviews elsewhere on the Internet, there are 'better' receivers in various categories, and depending upon your preferences and what you value as more important, will likely sway you to consider hard other receivers.

I can only directly compare the Roberts 876 to the Sony 7600GR: both receive almost all SW broadcast stations to the same extent off whip antennas or roll-up external wire antennas (supplied). However the Sony handles strong signal overload distortion very well, which degrades the Robert's results noticeably. The external speaker tone of the Sony is, to my ears, far too muddy and bassy and lack the crispness of the Roberts (smaller) speaker sound - this makes a large difference in resolving spoken words: the Roberts/Sangean is great here.
Pop on headphones and the Sony sound is good and well-balanced in bass and treble.

The Sony Synchronous AM Detection is often cited as a significant addition to portable radios and would seem to offer a panacea for most propagation distortions: but I cannot claim that from my experience. Switching on 'Sync' can marginally attenuate the signal heard, but seems only to tame some distortions, and certainly does not minimise or smooth out the propagation swings in signal strength to any large degree. Perhaps that is not the intention of Sync Detectors, but it seems to be the expectation of reviewers and the buying public/advertising. In short, Sync is another switch to throw that may offer some signal improvement, but it is not a strong effect.

SSB is fine: not wonderful, not bad - dial in the BFO (nice smooth dial to control this sensitive setting) and USB/LSB signals are heard clearly.
The fully variable RF attenuator is very useful: when auto-scanning the HF bands, the ability to vary the threshold of when the auto-scan stops on a signal means you can scan efficiently across bands which contain misleading noise signals, which would otherwise stop and start the scanning at every 1Khz or 5Khz (the increments used).

The buttons: this unit should come with a VFO, but the design of the 1980s, as well as the need for minimal protuberances in a portable radio, means tuning is slow work. Further, the delay between pressing a button to increment the frequency by 5Khz and the heard signal is 0.5 or more seconds...those delay-seconds add upon across an entire HF band. The Roberts/Sangean is near-instant. Of course, scanning blanks out the heard signals until the new frequency is established.

The display is ancient and offers only the bare bones: AM or FM, the frequency (in KHz), the page (for presets) and a 'Tune' indicator to show a 'strong' signal.
No S-meter, no band name (e.g. 19m), no UTC timing/clock - you need to press two buttons to get the time for 10 sec in the Sony display.

In practice, I listen on headphones, with the Sony reclined on its back stand, both hands holding it like a book: right hand switching attenuator on/off; left hand adjusting volume, sync, usb/lsb and bfo. It's a bit like riding a motorcycle, rather than being driven in a car. The proactive handling of the Sony receiver becomes second-natured, but could be a nicer experience with rotary encoders and less sync/ssb juggling (to filter interference, etc.).

Overall, a good, well-built portable, but not ideal and likely surpassed by newer machines: e.g Tecsun PL-660. I actually got this Sony as a gift with vouchers, so am not averse to buying something else since this Sony cost me nothing.



 
W8YT Rating: 5/5 Jul 19, 2013 03:32 Send this review to a friend
Very Pleased!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
High quality radio in every respect; I've only had it three days, but am using it very much. Receiving good CW on 40 meters and 15 meters that is easy to copy and stays stable. Previous speaker complaints by others must have been addressed in the new radios because mine sounds great on FM and AM. Well thought out ergonomics in such matters as the stand that presents the radio in a fashion for easy control input. At $129 on Amazon, this radio is definitely a keeper!
 
W2WP Rating: 5/5 May 22, 2013 11:17 Send this review to a friend
Awesome Receiver - Great on HF SSB  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I recently purchased this after selling my AOR 8200 MK3. I purchased the AOR a few months back hoping to be able to listen to the HF bands. It was a bust! I've heard more in the first 10 minutes of owning the IFC-SW7600GR than a month of AOR listening. It's about 80% of if I went into my mobile and fired up the ICOM 7000. Yes, it hears that well. I'm still shocked. The only band I have not heard any chatter is 160m. I haven't even tried the included wind up wire antenna. I haven't needed it. This is one off those purchases that far exceeded my expectations. GREAT JOB SONY 6 STARS!
 
K8KAS Rating: 5/5 May 10, 2012 05:36 Send this review to a friend
Nice SWL and Compact  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have used thie 7600 for almost 10 years, all over the USA and Europe when I travel. It works fine on SSB and I listen to HF BC stations all over the world. I wish it had a tuning knob on it, other wise it is great. PS use the wire antenna on the reel if you want more signal otherwise the whip works fine 95% of the time..
 
KC5UUS Rating: 0/5 May 9, 2012 12:13 Send this review to a friend
Worst receiver ever  Time owned: more than 12 months
Can't believe the positive reviews on this receiver,It will not receive s w broadcast stations at all.The grundig mini 300 is light yrs better. Except it drifts off freq.
SKIP this receiver go with a Grundig G-5 or something , any thing other than this Sony!
 
KF2YD Rating: 5/5 Feb 19, 2012 07:14 Send this review to a friend
Excellent Radio!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I really like my Sony ICF-SW7600GR radio. It is a very well designed radio and it is a much better radio then the cheap feeling and bad performing Chinese radios such as the Kaito, Tescum and other Chinese brands out there. I know that this radio is not perfect but it is a solidly built, performs well and the SSB is great and does not warble when you turn the light on and you do not have to go to page 9 to receive SSB like the Kaito 1102. If you want a better radio your going to have to dish out a lot more cash. If I didn't already own one I would buy one in a flash especially at the low price of $135 from Amazon.com.
 
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