I pulled a Sony WM-1 off the shelf today and checked eBay to see if it was selling for anything. I bought it at Goodwill for maybe five bucks. Plays music well but forward and reverse aren’t happening any longer. Loud as heck (produced before makers realized they’d get sued for killing kids ears–has that happened?).
To my surprise, there is one there on eBay now bid to $122. Unworking! I expected maybe $20 for working models (and that is what sold listings generally show). I wouldn’t part with mine for $20, but north of $100?
Apparently there is a Sony TPS-L2 in the movie Guardians of the Galaxy. The TPS-L2 was the first commercially available portable cassette player. The TPS-L2s are getting bid above $500 right now. Cosplay anyone? Crazy. So maybe the WM-1 (the first portable cassette player to carry the Walkman name, but the third product of this type from Sony) is also getting a Guardians bump. Or maybe just a general cassette bump.
I’m not walking and listening these days, but it is fun to pipe the WM-1 into the hifi (early Nirvana just earned a request for lower volume from my two legged housemate). That’s how I used my Sony D-5 CD player (the world’s first portable CD player). A very small and attractive unit until you slid it into the protective battery case to take it with you. If memory serves the battery case took four C cells and was as big and heavy as a hardback War and Peace. Needless to say, I rarely took the CD player out of the house. It also came with (or I bought) a dock for home use, giving the unit power in and a line volume out. Too bad I don’t have that anymore. eBay could fix that (they come up fairly often and sell for $50-300), but better to live with the nostalgia than another thing.
Frida is doing well. Enjoying something each morning from the home garden. The only things there now are arugula, parsley and crabgrass. I can’t catch her in the act to know which of the three are tickling her fancy. When I approach, she stops nibbling and looks up innocently. Might need to get out the binoculars!
I have’t shown you my new to me binoculars! I decided I’d enjoy some vintage optics gear. Old cameras rock, but I won’t get involved with film (gelatin in film is sourced from animals). Binoculars seemed to be a perfect fit. Awesome construction. Quality optics. Nothing but the binoculars to fill up the house (you see the image and then remember it or not). The ones from the known makers sell for quite a bit, but still very good examples from lesser known makers can be had for very little. I acquired this swell pair of Hertel & Reuss 8 x 30 for $40.
Eight is magnification (bigger number makes things seem closer, duh) and thirty is the diameter of the objective lens in millimeters (bigger number lets in more light for a brighter image). Binoculars with bigger numbers sell for bigger bucks, but vintage examples (without image stabilization) may be harder to use and are too big and heavy for bicycle adventuring. The 8 x 30 seems about right to me.
Like many owners, I am not sure when I will use them. Nephew’s football game this fall? Concert on a lawn? Post apocalyptic surveillance? Probably none of the above, so they may remain in their case, preserved for their next owner. No matter. I’ve done sillier things with $40.
That’s enough nonsense about old stuff. Lunch time! Take care.