As stated before, I have been both afraid of as well as fascinated by the weather since I was a toddler.
I’ve also been fascinated by all sorts of technological devices since then.
I’m not sure if this interest was acquired or is it in my blood.
All in all, because of this interest, I frequently shopped at Radio Shack, until I no longer could.
In February of 2015, the Radio Shack in Southland Mall was shutting down and going out of business.
I went there to see what sales I could find.
I found an $80 for around $8, a Radio Shack 12-996.
In September of 2018, this radio is still going strong.
This particular model gets the AM (Medium Wave) and FM broadcast bands in addition to the Weather Radio channels.
It is “Public Alert” certified, meaning I can program the SAME code for any County or Parish and have it only go off for when there is an alert for that specific administrative division
It also has an alarm clock.
For power, it runs on either four AA batteries or an AD/DC wall adapter.
The front firing speaker on this radio has superb audio quality.
The entire controls on this radio are controlled by a touchscreen interface, something which required me getting used to. At the time of purchase, I didn’t even have a touchscreen phone.
However, once I had gotten accustomed to this device, it has become a faithful companion.
When I lived with my wife, this was a very useful bedside radio.
After her and I split up, and I moved out, I kept it and it became an equally useful kitchen radio.
As of now it rules my kitchen counter and keeps me entertained and informed while cooking, washing dishes or doing anything else that requires me to be in my kitchen.
Aesthetically, it reminds me of one of those kitchen radios that housewives had during the Golden Age of Radio. Granted it has an integrated circuit instead of vacuum tubes, a touch screen instead of knobs and buttons and a PLL tuner instead of a dial tuner, but the form factor still reminds me of one of those antique radios from that era. I’ll go as far as to say how I frequently think of a woman walking home with her family from church on December 7, 1941, then going into her kitchen and listening to the radio as she prepares Sunday Dinner. Soon she hears about the Japanese bombing Pearl Harbor, then walks back to her church to pray for the victims and her country.
The radios of those days only received AM, however, this radio also gets FM and Weather.
Hopefully, it will keep me entertained and informed for years to come.
It faithfully picks up every weather alert I have programmed it to and blares a loud siren.
It also picks up every AM and FM station within reason and range.
This is one [recent] Radio Shack product that, I feel still has a superior quality.
There are only two things I don’t like about this radio and they are:
I wish the backlight could be turned off when the radio is on standby.
I wish the AM and FM tuners could have an international mode where FM tunes in 100 or 50 KHz steps and AM could be set to tune in 9 KHz steps while in other countries, but have the default 10 KHz when being used in North America.
I know the radio isn’t really designed for AM DXing, a better AM antenna should have been internally installed, but I myself am an AM DXer, so that is why I suggested this feature.
I would have never bought this radio at its MSRP, but since I got it on clearance, I do not regret my purchase at all.
These are a bit hard to find brand new these days, but eBay frequently carries them.
If you can get one, you will enjoy it.
All in all, I give this product a 4.5 out of 5 stars!