Re: [Bulk] [softrock40] Reverse Nostalgia
- I also had the HR-10B and paid $100 new in 1978. Soon after I found the DX-60 used for $35 used. I was 16 at the time and I remember it all. I hear that Heathkit is back and will be offering ham 'stuff'again. Wonder what they will have?Ken VA3ABN----- Original Message -----From: PeterSent: Saturday, October 08, 2011 8:57 AMSubject: [Bulk] [softrock40] Reverse Nostalgia
I was first licensed as a Novice in 1971 at age 15, and my first rig was a Heathkit HW-16 CW-only transceiver covering 80, 40 and 15 meters. I think it cost $99.95, and took about 2 weeks to build after school and homework. Heathkit also offered a matched receiver (HR-10B?) and transmitter (DX-60) for Novices covering 80-10, AM and CW. I think they sold for about $100 each, but I could be wrong. The other day I started wondering what those prices would be today, adjusted for inflation. I found a calculator for that on a U.S. Government website, which told me that $100 in 1971 is equivalent to $559 in 2011. Arguably, the U.S. govenrment inflation figures are "somewhat" understated, so keep in mind that the actual 2011 equivalent might be considerably more than $559.
A couple of years later my parents gave me an HW-101, also from Heathkit. That was a SSB and CW transceiver, 80-10 meters and 100 Watts output. I think those sold for about $300 when you included the external power supply, which would translate to $1677 today.
One could compare an Ensemble RX II kit to the HR-10B. Of course, the Softrock requires a computer, but nearly everyone already has one anyway. The Softrock is more versatile, and probably performs better. The kit costs $56 in 2011 dollars, which is equivalent to $0.10 in 1971. $100 for an HR-10B vs. $10 for a Softrock.
Compare the RXTX Ensemble Kit to the HW-101. OK, 1 Watt vs. 100, but the SDR is again more versatile. The $74 price in 2011 is equivalent to $13 in 1971 vs. $300 for an HW-101.
One can buy a fully assembled, 160-10 meter, 5-Watt SDR transceiver today for around $400, which is equivalent to about $72 in 1971.
The point is that amateur radio doesn't have to be an expensive pursuit. In fact, it's gotten a lot more affordable over the years.
Pete Goodmann, PE, MSEE, NI9N
Inconveniently located 110 km from Radioville, Indiana