Pye transistor radio, c 1960.
3 3 c m
actual image size: 32cm x 25cm

Pye transistor radio, c 1960.

© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library


In 1948, William Shockley (1910-1989) invented the transistor, and in the 1950s, transistors began to replace thermionic valves in radio receivers, allowing much smaller, more affordable portable radios to be produced. This radio illustrates the trend towards smaller radios and an altogether more casual attitude to sound broadcasting than had existed in earlier decades.

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