Manager - NA4M
Manager Notes

Reviews For: Sony SW100S Receiver

Category: Receivers: General Coverage

eMail Subscription

Registered users are allowed to subscribe to specific review topics and receive eMail notifications when new reviews are posted.
Review Summary For : Sony SW100S Receiver
Reviews: 15MSRP: 399.95
Miniature portable shortwave receiver
Product is in production
More Info: http://
# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
N2MDV Rating: 2019-01-19
Still a great portable, if you can get past the downsides. Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I love this little radio, too bad that I bought mine in 1994, with the now known ribbon cables problem. In 1999, I bought a ribbon kit from Sony and swapped the cables myself and filed the clam shell edges. I guess that I didn't file them down enough, as the problem of severed cables reared their ugly heads again a few years later. For over a decade, this was my Swiss Army Knife radio, now that falls to the Kenwood TH-F6A HT. Great features are the green LED screen lighting, direct entery keypad, fixed audio out for recording, synchronous AM detection, FM down to 76MHz for analog TV channels 5 and 6 listening, and that small size. The down sides are IMD from strong MW, HAM, and CB, stations, limited audio bandwidth, even with stereo headphones, SSB drift, poor battery life, receiver susceptibility being close to AC transformers, and of course that darn ribbon cable delemma. Still, a neat radio to have otherwise. Another repair post is,
KQ4KK Rating: 2017-01-23
a CLASSIC sw receiver Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I've had one since they fist came out. Had the door, ribbon cable problem. The solution is at this page

Fantastic radio after you fix the ribbon cable issue.

Earlier 5-star review posted by KQ4KK on 2007-06-18

Bought one when they first came out. Not a 2001 but for its size can almost beat a 2001. Used it riding on a train 3 hours a day for 2 years. The ribbon cable broke. Ordered one from SONY and replaced it. Last year I found out that SONY has a complete repair/mod kit to fix the ribbon cable problem. Includes a new top cover, ribbon cables and such that solve the clearance probleme that was cutting the ribbon. Works great now. SYNC has worked OK since I bought it. A keeper.
W0XXX Rating: 2017-01-23
The BEST! Time Owned: more than 12 months.
The poster below encouraged me to post on this as well.

I'm lucky enough to have two of these. Bought my first one in Singapore in the 90's and the second one off the used market in 2005.

You must be very careful with this rigs, because they don't do well when dropped. I dropped my original and broke one of the battery compartment tabs. It broke my heart, and it can no longer hold a battery, so a wall wart has saved its life.

I've taken mine into war zones, and hurricanes. The size is perfect, and travels very well in a carry on.

The speaker will never win any awards, but it works in a pinch, earbuds or headphones are the key.

Get the external wire which coils up into a round case, and clip it to the antenna for SW use...its wonderful.

These are becoming difficult to find now, and if you can, just grab one. I'll keep mine for the rest of my life.
RAHOBIT Rating: 2017-01-22
Great performer in a tiny package Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I bought mine in the 90's and its been a travel companion ever since. Extremely sensitive, so just about any length of wire will enable it to drag in lots of stations.

There's a really bad flaw in feeding the flexible cables between the lid and the base. Mine broke this year and I managed to fix them by shortening them (not for the faint-hearted). I hate the throw-away society and this challenge paid off. I like hearing about others epoxying and clipping the case too. I had to smear some around the battery compartment door.

Performance is nearly as good as my 2010/2001D and that's saying something. SYNC is good on mine and there are adjustment instructions on YouTube.

Latest issue - I discovered the main power on/off has major influence on power to the backlight and with some deoxit and exercise its now bright again.

Given nothing is forever I still award it a 5 due to its incredible miniaturisation and performance.

KJ4NWZ Rating: 2011-03-05
Mini Titan! Tour Du Force! Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I bought my Sony ICF-100S new for $360 in early 2003 and it's been a winner ever since. It's been out of production for a few years but I have seen some folks hawking it as "new" on eBay for twice as much.

It's bullish on battery power so I generally stock up on a good supply of AAs. The AN-100A was a winner too but it failed after a while and I replaced it with the Sony AN-LP1 loop active indoor antenna years ago. Still going strong.

Recently the battery compartment lid broke under stress and I lamented on not being able to use the radio. I flirted with the idea of buying another one from eBay but the prices are nothing short of extortion "maximus". I found a little metal clamp in my toolbox that saved me a wad of money to fix the lid. The clamp keeps the battery lid closed on the outside, the radio now works and I'm happy on the inside.
RADIOLOVE Rating: 2008-06-29
Greatest unique minature portable and made in Japan Quality Time Owned: more than 12 months.
One of the best and most unique smallest pocket SW ever made. This is a classic and a collectors piece. I travel around the world with it and love the reliability and the technology ahead of it's time it represents. Too bad most manufactures today are just focused on lowering costs and building cheap junk in China. This is a high quality superior built made in Japan radio that will go down in history as the most sophisticated pocket radio ever made. Too bad Sony discontinued yet another excellent SW radio.
OE3SGU Rating: 2006-10-15
Good but to expensive Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I had this Receiver for about a year and it was a very good travel companion. Very light and small and a decent reception. The only downside in my opinion was the very high price in Europe compared to bigger and better units.
N1YYH Rating: 2006-02-22
Still one of a kind!! Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Still a wonderful shortwave radio after more than ten years! I owned the early version, which had a few problems with sync alignment, and now own a current (likely last production) version, which does not have ANY sync issues. Splendid radio! And, that's without the "S" model active antenna. One word of caution: If you plan to enjoy the radio in the future, order a spare (or two) ribbon cable, the weak point of this radio. They were available still, in recent months, but there is no guarantee for the future. A broken ribbon cable could permanently sideline an otherwise exemplary shortwave radio. Since I have two spare cables, mine will will be a keeper!!!
2E0AYQ Rating: 2006-01-06
A mini marvel Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I have recentley purchased one.Here in the uk
the active ant and power supply are not suppiled
with the reciever it is the sw100e.
I think it is great. ideal if you travel butI also
use it at home.
don't be put off by its small size they say good things come in small packages.
this receiver performs flawlessly I think that
the audio is good outstanding through headphones
I picked up several stns in the states and
canada with just the telescopic ant.
it is very well made full sw lw mw fm coverage
fm stereo through the headphones
lsb usb cw modes also syncronos am which works a
lot better than the sync on my expensive com reciever
25 memories
Sony discontinued it several years ago but if you shop around you can still buy a new one here in the uk at a much reduced price £149

GEIIM Rating: 2004-06-10
Good Reception - too small & AC makes Noise Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Very nice receiver, with good performance. The AC adaptor makes too much noise, radio is quiet when running on batteries.

The controls are small and a little difficult to use. The speaker is too tinny and though it's a very good speaker, it lacks the oomph necessary to make the sound enjoyable. If you are travelling, this is the radio to bring, but I wouldn't use it on a regular basis.