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Reviews Categories | Receivers: General Coverage | Philips D2999 Help

Reviews Summary for Philips D2999
Philips D2999 Reviews: 10 Average rating: 4.9/5 MSRP: $(missing—add MSRP)
Description: Portatop HF full coverage plus FM receiver
Product is in production.
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PJMM Rating: 5/5 Aug 21, 2016 01:11 Send this review to a friend
Upgraded to extend SW coverage up to 29999 Mhz  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Just an update to my previous Philips D2999/02. I have upgraded the SW coverage from 26,100 MHz to 29,999 MHz. Really happy with my toy. Great engineering piece from the 80's
KA3RCS Rating: 5/5 Oct 8, 2014 09:22 Send this review to a friend
Exquisite example of 80s technology  Time owned: more than 12 months
Around the time I became a ham in the late 80s, I saw this model in Passport to World Band Radio as well as the Sears catalog. I always wanted one, but couldn't afford one when they were available. It took close to 20 years until I finally found one at a hamfest (and later a second). Both are Magnavox variants, which only cover up to 26100 kHz. They are both in very good condition.

This is one of the coolest looking radios I have ever seen; an absolutely quintessential example of 1980s technology at its finest. And not only does it have looks, but it sounds better than just about any of the other receivers I have ever used (literally dozens). The switchable 7 inch top-firing speaker sounds incredible when receiving high quality AM signals, such as those from various stations on 75 meters. Like most shortwave receivers, it isn't really optimized for SSB or CW, but it is quite capable of receiving them decently. Unlike some other receivers, not only does it have good low end frequency response, but also high end. The Grundig Satellit 800, for example, has nice bass response and a large speaker, but even the widest filter is far too narrow to provide pleasant audio (though it is more optimized for SSB).

Though it is capable of operation from batteries, the D2999 really eats through them quickly. AC operation is definitely the preferred way to go. Then again, the audio amp is rated at 7 watts (!), so this isn't really surprising.

I found the service manual for this model, and located a jumper connected to one of the two (!) processors which is shorted for one version and open for the other version. I suspect that this may allow one to restore full coverage up to 29999 kHz. I plan to try this at some point. I can only imagine how some of the hi-fi 11 meter stations might sound (yes, there really is such a thing!). ;) The service manual even details running the diagnostic code built into both processors...this is one advanced radio.

In summary, this may very well be my favorite shortwave receiver ever. Absolutely gets a 5/5 rating!
RADIOFREAK Rating: 5/5 Mar 5, 2013 17:41 Send this review to a friend
Great !!!  Time owned: more than 12 months
Magnavox D2999 / Philips D2999.

One of the best looking portable radios EVER made,and also a very good receiver.
...what i can say,eye-catching design and well-positioned control buttons.
Today's radio manufacturers should learn from this receiver's design!!!
This is one of my favorite radio-gems in my collection.
I bought mine at a very reasonable price of 270 and it's really GREAT condition!
The radio itself is wery sensitive and the sound....WOW superb!
Big and easy to read s-meter.
If I compare it with my own Sony 2001D receiver,
it performs just as well .... but the sound quality is in d2999 completely totally different will win a Sony without a doubt!
If you want to find better sound receiver,you have to look for it a long time!
FPX77 Rating: 5/5 Mar 29, 2012 04:24 Send this review to a friend
Great radio  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have got two D2999,one very nice (260 euros) and a second not very nice but working for about 50 euros.Both are very sensitive ,even only on the whip antenna.Compared with my Sony ICF2001D the Philips perform as well.Refering to Service manual there has been several improvments on this radio,position of the mains transformer(vertical to horizontal) and new PCB.Both are improved versions and have exactly the same PCB.There is a mystery:
the Philips at 50 euros receive very well SSB,without decreasing RF gain,as well as on a communication receiver (except for selectivity),even on strong signals.
The other (the nice),receive well on all bands ,except on 41m,on this band it is necessary to decrease RF gain.
The noise floor is low and weak stations are readible.Although there is no preselector the front end is good,the two sets do not overload on external antenna,even on 49m band at evening here in France.The set use several dual gates MOSFETS.So I keep my two sets,one for ham listening,the other for dx broadcast.I precise that the two sets run till 29999khz (German versions are limited at 26100khz).The ceramic filters on 468khz are not standards,and it is difficult to find better replacements.All I can heard on my JRC NRD525 is heard on the D2999,except for selectivity as already mentioned .In fine a good radio for dxing,avoid early samples which works poorly.
W4ARZ Rating: 4/5 Apr 19, 2009 11:46 Send this review to a friend
You never know  Time owned: more than 12 months
You never know what you'll find at a hamfest. I found one of these several yrs ago at the SVARC Hamfest in Berryville Va for $100 in excelent condition. It sounds great, performs well for casual shortwave listening. The 1 and only thing I do not like is typical of many modern sets is the chuff chuff chuff sound when you are tuning thru the frequencies. Otherwise the receiver is very collectable and is a rare piece.
KA2SHU Rating: 5/5 Jan 3, 2009 07:20 Send this review to a friend
The Hidden Nugget Radio  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I was fortunate enough to buy a real clean example of the Magnavox/Philips D2999 portable receiver. As others have pointed out, it's hard to believe that this radio has passed notice in the SWL world. I own several communications receivers and this radio, with a few exceptions stands in there as a venerable SWL receiver. The sensitivity on HF,LW, and FM are ALL excellent using just the radio's whip antenna. The D2999's audio is superb. The radio has a large well lit signal strength meter and the digital display is large enough to be be easily read. The front firing monitor speaker's sound is excellent but when you switch in the top woofer, the quality is full, rich, and pleasing.
This radio can operate from D cells, the mains, or an external 12 volt car battery. An external speaker can also be added if desired. There is provisions for external antennas for FM and AM. There is a top row of band buttons that can immediately get you to practically all of the standard SW bands. The radio has 16 memories that store only frequencies. It's a pleasure to operate this radio. Given the year this radio hit the market, it's hard to believe how advanced it was for its time. Listed below are a few of the points that would separate this radio from a much more expensive communications receiver:
1) SSB reception is tricky and takes some getting used to. The BFO on my example did not have a real clean sound. You must first turn down the RF gain and crank up the audio. Stability in this mode was marginal.
2) The external connectors for this radio are the European type (Kirsh) and must be ordered for a first rate installation.
3) The selectivity is not narrow enough for code copy on a crowded band.
3 )There is no user selectable AGC, notch, or noise blanker.

There are however, features that would make this an excellent bedside radio. These are clock, alarm and search function. If you are an SWL and should be fortunate enough to locate one of these radios, GRAB it! Forget about the "Fisher Price" Sat 800. It's an oversized mediocre shoe box with lots of flaws.
DX4NZ Rating: 5/5 Dec 24, 2006 23:48 Send this review to a friend
Classic port-a-top!  Time owned: more than 12 months
Have had mine (D2999) for a couple of years now, very hard to find examples of this radio!
Nice receiver with excellent audio and great ergonomics. Great performance with its whip antenna. One of the reasons I have enjoyed this radio so much is the fact it is completely portable, albeit very large! Even after 20 odd years it still looks every bit a modern radio.
I too cannot understand how this receiver has been passed over until recently. If you can find one, buy it.
For those who have one or who are interested there is a yahoo user group at URL
W0LC Rating: 5/5 Mar 21, 2006 09:43 Send this review to a friend
One of the best kept secrets!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have owned and used mine for a few years and it isn't a cheap shortwaver receiver to be sure. Typically, I have seen them for over $400-500 on the market. Great features, wonderful audio and easy to use. No lightweight receiver either. It may look portable, but could pass for a base unit. Check out the website:

Much more info and a nice pic as well. What can I say. It worked perfectly for me and it a real treasure. Good luck finding one!
KA2EEV Rating: 5/5 Feb 18, 2006 13:24 Send this review to a friend
The Phillips / Magnavox D2999 is frequently not recognized and somehow has become lost in the shuffle over the years. Its being overlooked has resulted in it becoming a very rare commodity to find one anymore that's in good working condition. This radio has without a doubt been grossly underestimated and has thus missed out of earning its rightful place among the arena of fine quality receivers. The D2999 not only looks very impressive, it comes out an easy winner in performance that matches up to its good looks! Featuring a smart sleek style that is designed for portable operation, it also serves equally well as a stationary base receiver. A somewhat large and heavy radio, measuring 12.5" long x 10" wide x 4.25" high and weighing 11 lbs, it is sturdily made and comes with a detachable handle. The controls and buttons on the front panel are nicely arranged for easy and convenient operation. It features an extra large S meter and LCD both which are illuminated. Audio quality from this radio is excellent as a result of its dual speakers with a 3" front firing speaker and top mounted 7" woofer. The audio can be tailored for taste with separate bass and treble controls, and there is a line output at the rear for connecting an external audio amplifier. Private listening is also available through the headphone jack on the front panel. The receiver has a continuous tuning range that covers the longwave band 150 - 519 KHz, AM (medium wave band) 520 - 1608 KHz, and shortwave bands 1.6 - 29.9 MHz. Tuning into a station can be accomplished by using several different methods. A rotary dial allows for conventional manual tuning with 3 tuning speeds...Frequencies can also be exectuted via direct keypad entry...Frequencies can be searched via the scan search function...Frequencies can be accessed via the band selection...And, 16 frequencies can be stored for recall via the memory function. On top of the set there is a world map with a time zone chart as well as a frequency guide. Also on top is an extra long telescopic antenna that measures 62" when fully extended. The sensitivity of this receiver, incidentally, is equally on par with many of the more sophisticated or far more expensive sets that are currently on the market. It also features a selectable 3 KHz / 6 KHz bandwidth, variable gain control, BFO control for sideband reception, a built in clock with on / off timer and alarm function. The Phillips / Magnavox D2999 is truly a pleasure to operate and it is amazing how such a fine receiver has never gained full recognition!
DAROBIN Rating: 5/5 Jun 1, 2005 10:17 Send this review to a friend
Quiet Portable Blockbuster  Time owned: more than 12 months
It's somewhat surprising that the D2999 space on has gone unfilled for so long, because this is a radio classic which is frequently overlooked in debates about portable development and design.

The D2999 was produced under the Philips and Magnavox name, as everyone familiar with the radio knows. This receiver got some very good reviews in the 1980's, and then interest in it dropped off and it was kind of forgotten.

D2999s are available on Ebay in varying states of cosmetic and mechanical health. Most important, if you are looking for one, is to make sure all pushbuttons (which are the small square type) are functioning and have not been pounded by the previous user(s). Also check to see that the lights are working for the S-meter and LCD display and of course that antennas are not broken.

I have my Magnavox D2999 hooked up to a 100 foot longwire in parallel with some other receivers, including a number of gold plate specials by JRC and Drake. Sensitivity is the big standout on my D2999 -- this radio really pulls stations in, and combined with its dual bandwith option and the glorious sound from the front and top-firing speakers, it's a joy to listen to hour after hour.

The S-meter is large -- in fact, one of the biggest seen on ANY SW receiver, comparable to the Grundig 800 meter, and old fashioned analog. The radio tunes with "detents" or clicks for every turn, but unlike the annoying feature of the Grundig 650, you continue to hear signals as you tune. The radio has BASS and TREBLE controls, and has AGC Manual/Automatic option, but here is the big cautionary note. This is not the best receiver in the world for SSB, as one needs to reduce the RF gain a bit and go to manual AGC for stable SSB reception.

Antenna connections on the back are BNC for AM/SW and FM, similar to Grundig 700/500 which is a bit of a pain, but not insurmountable.

On some days, I'll be tuning on my JRC or Kenwood or Drake receivers, and then just switch the D2999 to the same frequency and it performs superbly. If you acquire a good condition D2999 I'm sure it will become one of the keepers in your collection.

While not on the same par as as a Grundig 700, chiefly due to the lack of synchronous detection, the D2999 is certainly as sensitive and looks fantastic!

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