Just for the record, I do not own the featured image on this page, nor is it the actual image of the product I am reviewing in this piece, but it is close enough and it is related.
I was born in the late 1980s and was a child throughout the 1990s.
Therefore, like most people born during this era, I have an appreciation for the boom box.
As I’ve mentioned before, whilst I was married, my then-wife, now ex-wife, and I would frequently do laundry at the house of her ex-brother-in-law.
We would then cook and run errands for him, in exchange for using his washer and dryer.
His deceased daughter (actually the aspiring writer whose death compelled me to launch this blog), had purchased a Sylvania Boombox from the Ruble, I mean, the Dollar General sometime before being killed in a traffic accident. After her passing, her dad (my ex-wife’s ex-brother-in-law) kept that boom box on his back porch and frequently listened to Classic Rock stations with it.
I would use it to listen to NPR while doing laundry. My then-wife would watch television with her nephews.
I was surprised by the tuning accuracy, especially on FM, despite using the power cord as an antenna and having a fairly simple rotary tuner.
It wasn’t long before I wanted one.
In the late Summer of 2017, I drove to the local Dollar General to purchase one for myself. Of course, there were none in stock so I probably made my frequent remark on how it isn’t the Dollar General but rather the Ruble General. Subsequently, I ended up buying one on eBay.
The one I purchased on eBay didn’t perform as well, so I ended up donating it to charity.
In January of 2018, I left my wife, after years of a tense and faulty marriage, and in May of 2018, I moved into my own apartment after spending the prior three months with an older friend.
From this nicer Dollar General, I purchased a television antenna, a portable fan, and a new Sylvania Boom Box, which is the one shown in the featured image but not the actual model that this piece will be a review thereof.
This model could filter out the interference from a nearby FM transmitter despite having a seemingly simple rotary tuning system.
I used it for about a year, then gave it to a neighbor.
In March of 2021, as I had planned, I purchased the updated version which features Bluetooth.
The model number is a Sylvania SRCD202DG-BT-EO and this will be the product reviewed in this piece.
I have yet to use the CD player feature because CD’s have become mostly obsolete.
I haven’t tried the AM radio feature either, because I have other radios for AM listening.
I tried the FM feature because I was hoping that it could filter out the nearby transmitter like its predecessor models. It does to a degree, but the power cord doubles as the FM antenna and it needs to be in a certain position to catch the NPR station I want.
Unless I was anticipating a hurricane or other disaster that results in an extended power failure I wouldn’t like to purchase the 6 C batteries needed to power this off the grid.
If I had a device that didn’t feature Bluetooth, there is an auxiliary in jack that allows this to be used as a set of speakers.
The speakers put out decent audio, but nothing like a more powerful stereo system.
The Bluetooth feature is where this is a winner.
I have downloaded some scanner and radio apps for my tablet and I pair it with his device.
With this setup, I can hear scanner feeds and radio broadcasts both locally and around the world.
And, yes, NPR is among those feeds.
So is the BBC World Service.
So are some interesting railroad and marine scanner feeds.
As a Christian I know I must needs be careful whilst listening to NPR.
Like one of my recent characters, I listen to NPR mostly because doing so enhances my vocabulary. I don’t particularly care for their biased reporting and I find it is getting worse since I began listening in the Summer of 2017. Case in point, as I’ve mentioned before, it was after hours of listening to NPR for the first time that I began referring to the Dollar General as the Ruble General. Some of the content on there does indeed enrich my mind.
I used to romanticize finding a better woman than my ex-wife and she and I moving into the neighborhood where I used to do laundry, then she and I would sit at home and listen to NPR. We would later have a daughter who would sing in the school choir. This dream almost came true when I met my ex-girlfriend but sunk after she called it quits on me a year and some months later.
There is still something I romanticize about sitting on a back porch in the later afternoon and listening to NPR, but the biased reporting is getting to be too much for it to be enjoyable. NPR is supposed to serve the entire American public, not just certain political factions. I would consider myself politically moderate and so was NPR at the time I began listening. But now, I find, it is leaning way towards the left and that isn’t fair.
All right, let me get off of my soapbox because I doubt it does any good.
My one complaint about this boombox is that the FM reception could be a little better, but at least it appears to have an AFC circuit, though not as well-performing as its predecessor models.
I keep it in my living room on a shelf next to a vintage scanner, a Realistic Pro 2022. That scanner may be slow, but it has the best audio quality I’ve ever seen in a scanner.
The feature I use most is Bluetooth, which provides significantly better audio quality when streaming on my tablet.
I would give this a 4.6 out of 5-star rating because I wish the FM reception was a little better and I wish the speakers could be a little louder.
This particular model is sold only at The Ruble, I mean, The Dollar General for $26+taxes. Considering the build quality and all that it does, I would say it is a fair price, provided one is actually in stock. Some Dollar Generals are notorious for product shortages, long lines in checkout, and cluttered aisles, hence me calling it Ruble General, to begin with. For those who don’t know, the Ruble was the official currency of The Soviet Union and I’ve heard countless reports of the shopping experiences there similar to what I’ve seen in some Dollar Generals, hence me coming up with that idea.
All in all, I guess this, therefore, concludes my review on the Sylvania Bluetooth CD Boombox.
I hope that you, the reader, have been informed and entertained.
May God richly bless you!
PS, Here are some YouTube videos of this device in use: