Usually I only test radios, which I personally own. But because I do not always have access to every receiver, I decided to review radios which are on loan to me as well. Again a warm "Thank you" to an anonymous hobbyist.
Although the Eton E1 is not in production anymore, it is still in high demand because it is the best portable radio since the manufacture of the Sony ICF-SW77. Looking at the Eton 1 and holding it in your hands, the knowledgeable SWL might even think that it was produced in China. Wrong! It was made in India. The American company R.L. Drake had a role in the development of the E 1. Just like some other radios by Degen, the E 1 has a rubber surface. Technically, the receiver is quite good. For the first time, Pass Band Tuning (PBT) was put into a portable receiver. A well- functioning synchronous detector, which offers selectable sidebands including double sideband, is rare among portable radios. There are lots of memories: 1700 memories, 500 of which are alphanumeric. The others are linked to a special "Country Data Bank", i.e., you can allocate frequencies to specific countries. That makes sense and thanks to a large display is easy to do. As a fully fledged world receiver, the E1 sports FM, LW, MW and of course the entire shortwave range with the usual modes AM, AMS, LSB, USB. Interestingly, the E 1 does not have a ferrite antenna for LW and MW! All frequencies are received with a telescopic antenna; instead the E1 has an amplifier, which can be switched on, if necessary. Of course, the E1 has a jack for external antennas, which is non-standard, though.
…is convincing! There were no overloads using the telescopic antenna. I compared the E 1 to the Sony ICF-2001D. The audio comparisons can be found here.
Sensitivity is very good. The synchronous detector locks in on the signal, even if it is weak. Thanks to the very narrow tuning steps of 10 Hz, reception of amateur radio and SSB is outstanding. Tuning causes no noise, either. Super! Because of the three band width filters of 2.3 KHz, 4.0 KHz and 7.0 KHz you are well-equipped for every situation. The filters are high quality, in thin plate encapsulated ceramic filters made by Murata. No effort was spared here.
The sound of the rather large loudspeakers is pleasant. With the bass- and treble control you can adjust the sound to your liking. The E 1 gives you a real treat! A portable radio with almost all technical subtleties. The large, clear and back-lit display makes easy operation possible. What's lacking is a RDS function for FM and PC-programmable memories. A negative point is the fact that the battery holders are badly or even not all padded. If you move the radio, the batteries are rattling in the battery tray. You can hear that very noticeably.
But still a great radio, which deserves much praise.