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Reviews Categories | Receivers: General Coverage | Realistic Star Patrol DX-120 Help

Reviews Summary for Realistic Star Patrol DX-120
Realistic Star Patrol  DX-120 Reviews: 4 Average rating: 4.3/5 MSRP: $69.99
Description: Four band general coverage radio.
Product is in production.
More info: http://
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KAPT4560 Rating: 4/5 Dec 13, 2014 03:38 Send this review to a friend
Nostalgia from when I was a boy.  Time owned: more than 12 months
I remember these receivers from my travels to Radio Shack with my dad and getting to try one on the demo shelf. (I also fondly remember the trips to Lafayette Radio).
To me this was where the good life was at, even though it probably picked up mostly the fluorescent lighting inside the store across the bands.
A friend found one at a thrift store about 6 years ago and presented it to me. It was in remarkably good cosmetic condition and worked, but had distorted audio and band 4 was quite deaf. At first I thought that the voice coil was rubbing in the Jensen speaker, but the reason turned out to be that the electrolytics had all dried up.
After replacing the electrolytics, cleaning switches and controls and peaking the coils and trimmers, the receiver became more impressive. Band 4 came back to fairly acceptable levels.
There were a couple of revisions in the front end with component changes (RF FET/OSC) that is covered in the service manual (available online). They may have changed the design to reduce images and improve band 4 sensitivity (mine is the earlier version).
Another thing I noticed was a constant slight hum in a quiet room whenever it was plugged in. I was always hearing the hysteresis of the 'always on' power transformer which was part of the design allowing mobile/emergency 12 volt operation as well. The power switch only switches the supply low voltage side.
All in all, it is a nostalgic receiver with features that would classify it as a communications receiver. For SWL use, it is OK but it's lack of stability would be frustrating for ham use. Especially if you are spoiled rotten by more professional receivers. Still for what it is, it is a simple, capable and listenable receiver.
For a kid in 1970, it was a wish-list receiver that you had a chance of talking the parents into getting if you were extra, extra good.

W2DDG Rating: 5/5 Feb 3, 2011 19:29 Send this review to a friend
Excellent and simple  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have had this radio since I first bought it in 1970( well, my Dad helped).Still listen to it from time to time. Excellent basic SW and MW receiver. I checked the alignment a little while back, and really didn't have to "tweek' it. Audio sounds great through the internal speaker and a lot of people rate the sound as the best on the Realistic DX Yahoo Group. I also have the DX-160 and the audio on this 120 is better. Keep a log and use the logging scale to come back to the frequency later. Simple. It helped me confirm 100 countries as a SWL when I was a kid. Larry, now W2DDG
WA7PVE Rating: 5/5 Jul 22, 2009 07:43 Send this review to a friend
fun. realable little rig.  Time owned: more than 12 months
As a kid just out of high school and heading to college this receiver was part of my first radio station. I coupled it to a Viking Ranger. The excitement of hearing a Ja station comming back to me on 15 meters will never be forgotten. Later as a Technician Class operator I acquired a Viking Ranger II and a nuevister receiving converter and bingo I was on 6 meter am. Workd abt 30 states in two years. Definately a fun rig to operate. lots of memeries.
KA8DLL Rating: 3/5 Mar 23, 2009 18:50 Send this review to a friend
The star patrol is a budget , well made communication receiver.  Time owned: more than 12 months
This is a budget communication receiver made by Radio Shack. Made in the mid 60's with a proud statement on the front, solid state. This is a four band communication receiver that turns up at garage sales in the ten and fifteen dollar range. The construction is generally good and it has a BFO pitch control and a RF gain control. This is an economy radio that still gives good results without too many parts. It has a fairly stable BFO for the ham bands and the RF gain control is very useful for a long antenna. It even has a very small S-meter in the upper right hand corner. A standby switch can be noted on the right hand side. The band spread control has a direct drive which must be tuned quite slowly to tune in SSB signal. But it can be done fairly easily. Like it's bigger brother the DX-150 series, the back piece is mostly cardboard.
This radio shows that pretty good results can be produced on a quality budget. All in all, this is a nice beginners radio and does the job of wetting the feet of a potential new ham. Good sensitivity, fair selectivity, quality circuit boards, nice product from the Orient.

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