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Reviews Categories | Receivers: Weather Alert | C. Crane Co. CC Radio Help


Reviews Summary for C. Crane Co. CC Radio
C. Crane Co. CC Radio Reviews: 14 Average rating: 1.7/5 MSRP: $$165
Description: Has the weather alert function, good AM FM TV radio too
Product is in production.
More info: http://www.ccrane.com I think
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N7AG Rating: 2/5 Jun 4, 2015 21:32 Send this review to a friend
Slow death  Time owned: more than 12 months
Have had mine ABT 17 yrs. On-off button tempermental. Now knob tuning doesn't work. CC says send it back. Perhaps radios just fail after 20 yrs. Except the all American five in the basement.
 
KD6SWA Rating: 5/5 Jun 4, 2015 18:21 Send this review to a friend
Mine has been great  Time owned: more than 12 months
Owned this radio for 14 years and not a problem until the sound would not come out of the speaker last night. When I read the reviews I could not believe how lucky I was to get a good one. Called C Crane about a schematic and parts and felt they were evasive - other than telling me a schematic wasn't available. I am a radio guy ( hate TV) and use this everyday. Sorry for all that had problems.
Mine really brings in the stations and I have been happy with it as I tend to keep things a long time.
Mine has only been in the house so not subject to heat, cold or vibration.
While moving some electrolytics around looking for a value and date code, the sound came back. This is on the board near where the wires go to the speaker.
 
KC6RCM Rating: 1/5 Mar 3, 2015 12:55 Send this review to a friend
It's junk  Time owned: more than 12 months
Overpriced, cheaply made and comes with the infamous LCD display issue as a bonus. Also included is the C. Crane Company customer no service award.
 
PJR Rating: 3/5 Oct 25, 2013 03:30 Send this review to a friend
An OK radio with some flaws.  Time owned: more than 12 months
I am not a DXer. These radios were/are used for otherwise ‘normal’ use. I wanted something beyond the ordinary cheap-build, portable AM/FM radio.

I have owned and used these radios over many years. I still use one of them currently, as I write this review. I have both the Black and Silver radio. I first bought the Black Mica Edition – then later, the Platinum Edition. However, some years ago, both of these radios developed a problem. The operation of the On/Off button and the switching between memory-stored stations became problematic.

Example, if I hit Memory Button 4, Memory 3 station comes up. If I try to turn off the radio, another stored-memory station pops up. It got so bad with the Black Mica Edition (Dark Gray) as the months flew by; I had to use the Sleep Button to turn off the radio. I put the Black Mica Edition in storage. The problem is more or less subtle with the Platinum Edition and I still use it, currently.

If I remember correctly, the problem was with an electrical connector(s?) and a sealant or ‘glue’ that over time becomes conductive causing this problem. Upon searching the Web, I found this site – hence I am writing this review. So far, I have not found any detailed info about the problem and how to fix it. I shall keep looking, but either way, I may attempt to dive in and see if I can fix it.

Sensitivity and Selectivity: I also have the GE SuperRadio II and still use it. I did a few daytime and nighttime AM DX comparison testing years ago. They both are close, by my ears, for sensitivity and selectivity. By a slightest of hairs, the CCradio appears to be better. With nighttime signal-fade distortion, the CCradio ‘clearly’ wins. On a deep fade, I could not hear what one talker said on the SuperRadio while it was intelligible with the CCradio.

FM: Overall, the SR and the CCradio were the same, except for selectivity on some weak stations. The CCradio has the slight edge here.

I normally do not use the TV band anymore, since analog VHF TV is gone, but I do pickup WLFM-LP Cleveland, OH on channel 6 and on the FM band on 87.75 30 miles away with the telescopic antenna. (I did switch around the antenna rods with the “SuperRadio I” and the Platinum Edition CCradio’s shorter antenna some years ago.)

Tuning: Over time, using the manual fine-tuning knob gets quite erratic. When tuning up or down in frequency, the tuning jumps in the opposite direction. Is this oxidation with copper contacts? I do not know, but what I do, is slide the digital lock button on, and then spin the tuning dial one way for about 10 seconds and the same for the opposite direction. It does help. This needs repeated if it is going to days and weeks before you fine-tune again.

AC Operation: I have nothing to report, as 99% of the time I use batteries.

Battery Operation: What I like about the analog SuperRadios 1 and 2, is the long life with batteries – right down to the last drop of juice. There is plenty of time (warning) for changing to a new set of batteries. Right now, I have six weak batteries in my SR2. I thought I was going to change batteries soon. That was 6 months ago! I can tell the batteries are weak by the excessive drift at first after power-up and audio distortion at higher volume and bass settings. Usually, at least one of the six batteries would completely die ahead of the others. Not this time, hence the extended operation – I have plenty of double-digit hours beyond the ‘norm’.

The CCradio uses four batteries. The only warning before the batteries ‘die’ for this digital-tuning radio is the one remaining battery icon. There is still plenty of hours left at this point, but no warning with these CCradios when the batteries are low enough where it suddenly turns off. (There is plenty of battery life remaining with these ‘dead’ batteries when used in the GE SuperRadio.)

Weather Alert: Do not use it much since the S.A.M.E. feature of other wx radios is available.

I am sorry for those that have this and other reception, audio, and the display problems with the CCradio as I search the Web. I have not noticed these other problems with these two CCradios.
 
K7MJG Rating: 0/5 Jul 25, 2013 14:34 Send this review to a friend
Failed LCD - Terrible Customer Service  Time owned: more than 12 months
This radio has been disappointing since I purchased it at what I've come to realize was a horribly inflated price.

Like many others, the LCD panel has failed, rendering the radio mostly useless. If the sound quality and reception were passable, I might have dealt with it and permanently left it on a favorite station, but it just isn't worth it.

I called C Crane customer service and they were unsympathetic. They said they can't fix it but that if I snapped off the plastic LCD cover and sent it to them, they'd send me a coupon for another one of their over-priced, under-supported, under-performing radios. No kidding. They want me to deface their radio for a coupon? To me, that's an indication of how little they care about their radios and their image.

Nice that eHam has a zero rating, which is well-deserved.
 
WB1AAL Rating: 1/5 Sep 1, 2012 19:38 Send this review to a friend
Yet Another Failed CC Radio 2  Time owned: more than 12 months
I did like the CC Radio 2. Honestly I did. Reception wasn't a problem for me on any band (I do live with line of sight of the NWS radio transmitter and no local AM radio station runs more than 5 KW.) With a decent sized speaker, the sound was certainly acceptable. The addition of the two-meter ham band was a plus. And they said such nice things about amateur radio operators in the radio's manual. How could you not like the C. Crane folks and this lovely radio?

Things change because, as likable as the C. Crane folks might be and as enjoyable as it may be to use this radio, it is far from reliable. That has been my experience and apparently the experience of others as well. In fact, all was fine until one day recently when the radio stopped working.

Nothing was wrong with the batteries and the radio was plugged into an AC outlet anyway. The lock switch was unlocked as it should be. But no button worked, there was no display on the LCD panel and no sound. It is dead as the proverbial door nail. And the radio isn't that old. I bought it new perhaps 12 or 18 months ago.

How can my 52-year old Hallicrafters SX-110 receiver continue to run flawlessly while a 18-month radio fails without obvious cause?. My only explanation is that the Hallicrafters is built like a tank but this radio is built like what it is--a cheap Chinese product. The only thing is that this radio really isn't cheap--in fact at $160 or so it's rather expensive.

Crane folks, given my review and the others here on eHam it sounds like your lack of quality may be huring your reputation and that's a pity.
 
WX4C Rating: 1/5 Mar 3, 2012 06:48 Send this review to a friend
Very poor receiver  Time owned: more than 12 months
The CC Radio has a very poor receiver on AM and FM. Also the WX Band is useless unless you are within 25 miles of a WX Transmitter. I ordered this Radio because of the Ad on Coast to Coast
Radio and it is nothing like it was advertised.
I do not like to post a negative review but because of the poor reception, I would not advise anyone to purchase this Radio.
 
K7RTA Rating: 1/5 Mar 3, 2012 05:02 Send this review to a friend
not a good choice  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
i owned two of these radios, gave them away to the goodwill after the liquid crystal displays
went belly up on both of them. if you enjoy am-fm broadcast radio the sangean LB-100 is top gun at a fraction of the price, built tough, very hefty
and has a physical appearance that definitely catches the eye.
 
K0IC Rating: 0/5 Jan 15, 2010 03:46 Send this review to a friend
It is a cheapo!  Time owned: more than 12 months
Since I am not blessed with a 50 kW AM station nearby it could be my radio works better than it should. My LCD display crapped out also after a few years. Since C.C. Crane Co. apparently does not repair it this is the last C.C. Crane Co. product I am buying from them. I prefer the GE Superradio but I see it is no longer in production sad to say. We are in a bad way when electronics is good enough to get out the door that does not hold up or is repairable.
 
ANDREW_P Rating: 0/5 Jan 14, 2010 21:27 Send this review to a friend
It's crap  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I just got a reply from C. Crane Co. regarding repair of a friend's CC Radio with non-working liquid crystal display (LCD). Their customer service representative wrote, in part:

"In response to your inquiry, the display needs to be replaced when number digits are missing. The parts are no longer manufactured or available for the Original CCRadio. We handle repairs here at C. Crane for the CCRadioPlus and we can replace the display on this model. Your friends may email us or call our toll free number to arrange repairs if they own a CCRadioPlus."

So, no parts available and a CC Radio can't be repaired. What now? Superficially, the LCD looked like it was in good shape; no cracks or bleeding of the liquid crystal, no darkening or fading typical of exposure to temperature extremes. The only problem was that some of the number segments and icons no longer displayed at all. Although I know my friend isn't particularly gentle with possessions, this radio wasn't abused since she bought it several years ago. I decided to open 'er up and take a look for myself. What I found inside the plastic case was a $15 transistor radio that was being sold for ten times what it was worth.

The circuit boards (2 ea.) are single-sided phenolic/paper, typical of cheap Asian construction. One board has the RF components, the other, call it the control board, has the display, a quad flatpack (QFP) ASIC and various miniature snap-dome switches that are actuated by the front-panel control buttons.

The LCD is inside a thin sheet metal bezel that is attached on the second side of the control board such that the attachment tabs are inaccessible under a shield soldered to the first side of the control board. Once the half-dozen solder fillets were removed, the shield came off easily, revealing part of the problem. The LCD flex circuit appears to be high-carbon ink, literally printed onto a strip of plastic; no etched copper foil on Kapton here. I was expecting to find a zero-insertion-force (ZIF) connector or elastomeric zebra stripe compression connector for the LCD, but, no, the flex circuit is threaded through a slot in the circuit board and _glued_ to the first side of printed circuit board. Very likely, if I were to untwist the LCD bezel tabs and try to remove the LCD, this glued joint would disintegrate, as well as a similar glued joint on the back of the LCD glass. (I had a similar experience trying to replace the battery on a $1 Chinese desk calculator last week.)

I've worked in the disk drive industry for over 20 years, and have been involved in many flex circuit designs. We typically use some type of compression connector that provides reliable, gas-tight connections and can be disassembled and reassembled a couple of dozen times, at least. The flex circuits are copper foil on Kapton, and are designed for cost sensitivity. By the late 1990's, the bill of material (BOM) cost of 3.5-inch disk drives had fallen to around $10-$12, and a disk drive is _far_ more complex than the CC Radio. The way the LCD is installed in the CC Radio is simply inexcusable; it seems to be the main reason these radios fail. All functions are displayed on the LCD, and when it fails, the radio is essentially useless. Simply put, it's a disposable product, albeit a rather expensive one. To correct the design deficiency in the LCD installation would have cost somewhat less than $1.00 per unit in volume, a cost increase that would have been easily covered by the price C. Crane was asking for the product. Selling a product like this is a black eye for the C. Crane Company: They saved a buck and damaged their reputation. I haven't had the pleasure of analyzing a CC Radio Plus, but if it is constructed anything like the original CC radio, it should be avoided at all costs.
 
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