I think this is easily one of the best looking boomboxes out there. It's the Sharp GF-1000 and is part of the famous Sharp four woofer family of boomboxes including the GF-767, GF-777, and GF-999. It was only offered for sale in Japan in the early 1980's so it is very rare to find one in the U.S. While it looks good with the cobalt blue speaker grills on, it looks even better with them off.
The white speaker cones and chrome dustcaps really stand out and give it a sophisticated and clean look. The GF-1000 has four 16cm woofers and two horn tweeters. It also has two cassette decks both capable of playing normal, chrome and metal cassettes.
- 29.6 x 14.9 x 6.5 inches
- AM/FM Stereo Radio-Tape Recorder
- Double-Cassette deck
- APSS (Auto Program Search System)
- Normal, Metal, Chrome Tape Capability
- 30-18000Hz (Metal)
- Speakers: 2x 160mm Woofer, 2x 160mm Sub-Woofer, 2x Horn Type
- Power Source: DC 15V or 10 "D" battery
- Weight 28 lb
It has a four-channel power amplifier with adjustable bi-amping and Per-channel power control for super-woofers. Another interesting aspect of the GF-1000 is that it's FM tuning range is from 76MHz to 108MHz which is not normal for a domestic Japanese boombox as their FM dial only reaches 90MHz.
Here's a video of the Sharp GF-1000 in action:
Alright, so I may be pushing it a little here by calling this Panasonic RX-ED90 a vintage boombox. But, it was manufactured in the mid 90's which is now almost 20 years ago so it is definitely bordering on vintage. And, while it does have a CD player it also has two cassette decks. The values of some of these 1990's CD playing boomboxes have been climbing steadily meaning that people are collecting them and they do have their place on a site such as this. That being said let's get to the details.
The RX-ED90 is also referred to as the Cobra Top. You can see from the picture above why that is the case. The flip top display and control panel look vaguely similar to a cobra's head when in the upright position. I believe this model was the last of the flip top line and some consider it the best. Below you can see the two cassette decks inside the flip top panel area. Both decks have auto reverse.
The illuminated control buttons and panel add to the look of the RX-ED90. The box has what's called a Spatializer for 3 dimensional sound or S-XBS.
The Spatializer even has its own LED display on the front panel that pulsates with the music output which this model pumps out at about 86 watts.
The ED series of cobra top boomboxes consisted of the RX-ED50, RX-ED77, RX-ED90 and RX-ED707. They also manufactured a flip top line under the RX-DT designation as well. Many feel the RX-ED707 is the best sounding of the ED series, but you'll find quite a few that prefer the RX-ED90 as well. Some other features of the RX-ED90 are:
- FM/AM RADIO
- AUTO REVERSE DECK 1-2
- AUTO TAPE SELECTOR DIGITAL
- PRESET EQ
- TIMER ADJUST/CLOCK ADJUST
- CD PLAYER
- CD REC MODE AUTO/1TRACK
- CD REC LEVEL
- AUX FOR IPOD OR MP3 PLAYER
- MIX MIC INPUT
- LINE OUT
The Panasonic RX-ED90 does have an Aux In line so you can hook up your iPod. And, as I mentioned earlier it has both a CD player and cassette players so different media formats won't be a problem with this unit. Most functions on the unit can be controlled with the remote control as well. However, while the tape decks doors will open via the remote they must be closed manually as they are not motorized.
If you like the looks and styling of the RX-ED90 then you'll probably want to take a look at the RX-ED707 as well because it has the same cobra top but the speaker grills give it an alien look.
The ED series of boomboxes including the Panasonic RX-ED90 are fast becoming very collectible. Since they include CD players and Aux In lines for mp3 players they are very useful. They are built well and sound great as well. Prices have been climbing for units in good condition. In fact, an RX-ED90 in mint, out of the box, condition sold for $1275.00 in August of 2014. Obviously that's a top end price. Models in used condition or not fully functional can sell for a couple hundred dollars. Overall they are great boomboxes and prices are climbing.
Here's an interesting video showing some of the functions of the RX-ED90...